Chambers v. God

Nebraska State Senator Ernie Chambers filed a pro se lawsuit in a Nebraska state court last week seeking an injunction prohibiting God and his followers from making “terroristic threats” and engaging in “deleterious conduct.” The senator’s complaint (pdf, 5 pages) is verified, meaning that he affirms that the allegations therein are true to the best of his beliefs.

According to this article, Chambers filed the lawsuit in part as a protest against tort “reform” efforts on the part of his fellow state legislators:

Senator Chambers says, “This is a way to show that anyone can sue anyone including God. It’s an object lesson too. It demonstrates that the mere filing of a lawsuit doesn’t guarantee a win.”

. . .
Chambers says he decided to file the lawsuit in part as a response to other lawmakers who have tried to prevent lawsuits from being filed over the years and in part due to a high profile sexual assault case in Lancaster County.

That’ll learn ’em, all right. Protesting tort “reform” by filing a baseless lawsuit strikes me as akin to expressing displeasure over a proposal to tighten restrictions on public defecation by taking a gargantuan, steaming dump in a public park full of mothers and children.

On the bright side, the court might ultimately hold as a matter of law that the Defendant doesn’t exist. In any event, it’s a damn good thing Chambers isn’t seeking money damages. The judge assigned to this case is a career insurance defense guy.

UPDATE – 9/21/07: Teh intarwebs are all abuzz with news that God has filed not just one but two responses. The AP article indicates that The Almighty is both challenging the court’s jurisdiction and asserting the substantive affirmative defense of immunity. So far I haven’t been able to track down the actual filings online, but you’ll be the first to know when I do.

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Comments

  • illusory tenant  On September 19, 2007 at 10:20 am

    [T]he court might ultimately hold as a matter of law that the Defendant doesn’t exist.

    Don’t get your hopes up. I recall a suit naming Satan and his minions that was dismissed not on the non-existence of the named defendant but because his whereabouts were unknown, Satan was thus unable to accept service of process.

    His minions shouldn’t have been all that difficult to locate, however.

  • genghishitler  On September 19, 2007 at 3:42 pm

    I recall a suit naming Satan and his minions that was dismissed not on the non-existence of the named defendant but because his whereabouts were unknown, Satan was thus unable to accept service of process.

    That’s true, but in this case the court might be willing to entertain a motion for substituted service on anyone who claims to have a “personal relationship” with the defendant.

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