Katrina Relief: A Modest Proposal for Random House
While we filed our notice of appeal on Friday, I have instructed my attorneys to tell Random House that if they and Dan Brown would contribute to hurricane relief the equivalent of what they will spend on legal fees to fight my appeal, (perhaps $500,000 in cash or the equivalent in books to affected schools) I would drop my claims.
The fight would go away. I would go away, the victims would receive additional aid and Random House et.al. get the charitable deduction and the "feel good" buzz that comes from helping people in need.
I suggest that their $500,000 can be used to restock the books in the Gulfport, Mississippi public library.
For a look at the need, go to this page: wjtv.com/
scroll down until you get to "PHOTO GALLERIES " in the right-hand column.
Then click on: Gulfport, Miss.
Then, within that series of photos, go to number 24 and 25.
The library has been destroyed.
$500,000 worth of books (NOT at cover price, NOT at wholesaler price but at publisher's COST) will go a long way toward restoring this. They can put up a plaque at the new library thanking Dan Drown and RH ... much great PR, no need to mention me or why they did it.
To reiterate: if they do this, I'll withdraw the appeal and go away.
For reasons stated in earlier blog posts, we are prepared to take this to the Supreme Court.
We have an excellent chance of getting a hearing there given the vast disparities in the standards employed by courts of appeal.
Random House will not grind me down in the legal fee situation. My earlier representation was handled on a contingency fee basis and the coming appeal is based on a very reasonable cap on legal fees. I mention this to emphasize that I am ready and -- thanks to the commitment and generosity of my legal team -- to take this as far as the process will allow in my quest for a trial.
There are many who believe my legal fees (limited, capped and affordable) and that much, much, much larger amount which Random House will expend are far better spent directed to the victims of Hurricane Katrina. I agree with those people.
I'm blogging this because I want Dan Brown and everybody associated with Random House at every level to know about this. I don't want it to get bottled up in a legal wrestling match with people trying to work the angles and maneuver for some sort of advantage.
The need is real, it is vital and its significance transcends this infringement issue. Yes, I still believe in my case and know that I will win once I get to a jury. But in a national catastrophe, we need to put self-interest aside and help those in need.