Radio DJ David Mueller, who attempted to sue Taylor Swift for $3 million in damages claiming she falsely accused him of groping her, told The Associated Press that he’s finally paid the singer’s countersuit of $1. However, David Mueller paid Taylor Swift the symbolic dollar in a way intended to take a jab at the Look What You Made Me Do singer; by sending her a Sacagawea dollar, which features a prominent female Native American on the coin.
Swift, who was named one of TIME’s Person of the Year, was commemorated as one of The Silence Breakers for speaking out about her assault. Long before the Harvey Weinstein allegations fueled the #MeToo campaign, Swift had taken a stand against Colorado radio DJ David Mueller after an incident when a photograph was being taken where Swift says Mueller reached under her skirt and grabbed her rear end. After privately reporting the incident to Mueller’s work from which he was subsequently fired, Mueller sued Swift for defamation and the singer countersued for the symbolic $1 and won.
In her interview with TIME, Swift tells the magazine that she still hadn’t received the dollar, saying “the act of defiance is symbolic in itself.” But according to The Associated Press, it turns out David Mueller paid Taylor Swift the $1… but still up-kept the “act of defiance” part. Mueller even provided a letter to The Associated Press to prove the payment was sent on November 28, 2017, although it’s possible the TIME interview was conducted before the payment was sent. Regardless of the outcome, Swift’s court case became a very early milestone in the present stand against sexual harassment, sparking the #MeToo campaign and TIME magazine naming The Silence Breakers The Person of the Year for 2017.
This is why many are upset over Mueller’s decision to send Swift a Sacagawea dollar in an attempt to “poke” at the singer. “I mean if this is all about women’s rights. … It’s a little poke at them, a little bit,” he told The Associated Press. “I mean, I think they made this into a publicity stunt, and this is my life.” Many found the way David Mueller paid Taylor Swift to be offensive, pointing out that the ex-DJ’s attempt to get the last laugh after losing in court defeats the purpose behind the case and the symbolism behind the $1 countersuit.
Swift had already expressed her disdain for the court proceedings, sharing that by the time she testified she was so angry she could no longer focus on courtroom formalities: “I had already been in court all week and had to watch this man’s attorney bully, badger and harass my team including my mother over inane details and ridiculous minutiae, accusing them, and me, of lying,” Swift said.
“My mom was so upset after her cross-examination, she was physically too ill to come to court the day I was on the stand.” Swift stated, “I was angry. At that moment, I decided to forego any courtroom formalities and just answer the questions the way they happened.”
Many applauded the singer’s blunt testimony in court. “This man hadn’t considered any formalities when he assaulted me, and his lawyer didn’t hold back on my mom—why should I be polite? I’m told it was the most amount of times the word “a**” has ever been said in Colorado Federal Court,” shared the singer.
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