Let's talk about an unusually despicable, ridiculous, bigoted, and potentially dangerously unbalanced and violence-threatening lawyer — Jason Lee Van Dyke.
Why do I say those things about him?
Potentially dangerously unbalanced and violence-threatening:
Jason L. Van Dyke, Texas attorney (for now), likes threatening violence against people who make fun of him or criticize him or question him online. Recently he's been getting questioned, ridiculed, and criticized a lot, since he filed suit seeking to force Victoria County District Attorney Stephen B. Tyler to explain why he rescinded a job offer to make Van Dyke a deputy prosecutor. (Probable answer: Tyler didn't do any due diligence before making the offer to Van Dyke and belatedly discovered he appears to be a bigoted lunatic.)
Take this weekend. When Twitter-user Asher Langton criticized, questioned, and ridiculed him, Van Dyke resorted to physical threats. He referred to Langton's home town of Omaha and discussed attacking him:
This is not the first time Van Dyke has extravagantly threatened violence in response to people writing about him and his behavior. Observe:
It's not the first time he's threatened @AsherLangton, either. Consider this email from a few months ago:
Yes, an all-around charmer.
And great with clients and potential clients!
Nothing but good times.
Guns appear to make up a very prominent part of Van Dyke's life. That's fine, in the abstract — many Americans are fond of guns, and the vast majority of them aren't threatening thinskinned freaks, but responsible. Let's hope Van Dyke doesn't kill anyone in the throes of the sort of pique that seems to be his defining characteristic.
Why do I call Texas attorney Jason L. Van Dyke fraudulent? That's my opinion of him based on these facts: he misrepresented a joke to a court in an attempt to get a bogus default judgment against a defendant.
Back in 2014, Van Dyke sued a revenge porn site called PinkMeth on behalf of one of its victims. Suing a revenge porn site is a mitzvah. Revenge pornsters are scum, and if there is a lawful and constitutional way to take them down and inflict life-destroying consequences on their creators and users, decent people should. But the enemy of my enemy is not my friend, and not everyone who fights evil is good. Van Dyke is not good.
Neither is Van Dyke's pal, Kyle Bristow. Bristow, who was rejected by Young Americans for Freedom as too nuts, is a dreamy-eyed writer of white nationalist slashfic, an aspiring early retiree from an unpleasant squalor of the "urban" [cough] world, and someone who shared Van Dyke's outrage at revenge porn, mostly because it targeted nice white girls.
“Revenge pornography is nothing more than a manifestation of liberalism,” Bristow said. “Most victims on revenge pornography websites are young, white, blonde, middle class, American women. Women who the pornographers can link to conservatism or Christianity are especially targeted for harassment.”
What a buddy comedy this is shaping up to be!
Anyway, at one point in the course of typical online back-and-forth shittalking, PinkMeth joked that its lawyer was Kyle Bristow and even swiped Bristol's photo as its Twitter image to troll people. Bristow, in fact, was helping Van Dyke with his case, not representing the defendants. But Van Dyke pulled what can only be called a short (and dumb) con on the court — he purported to serve PinkMeth by giving the complaint to Bristow at Bristow's office address and sought a default against PinkMeth on that basis, misrepresenting to the court that PinkMeth's listing of Bristow was sincere rather than obviously trolling. Now, a very unusually careful clerk might have caught it based on the tone of the documents about Bristow that Van Dyke attached, but that's unlikely.
This sequence of events shows that Texas attorney Jason L. Van Dyke committed fraud on a court. Trolling stops at the courthouse door — the fact that PinkMeth (which, let's not forget, is a revenge porn site run by scum who should be used to mulch lawns) was trolling does not excuse misleading a judge.
Why do I call Texas attorney Jason L. Van Dyke a vexatious litigant? That's my opinion based on his history of litigation and threats of litigation. Among other things:
In suing PinkMeth, he also sued the Tor Project, which produces free open-source software that protects online anonymity. Is the Tor Project engaged in revenge porn? Only in the sense that the California Department of Transportation is engaged in bank robberies if I flee one on a public road, or Verizon is engaged in interstate threats if I use a cell phone to make one. It was a riotously frivolous and probably sanctionable argument, as discussed here and here and here and here and here and here. He quickly dropped the suit with a mostly incoherent non-apology.
Then there's the lawsuit-threatening. He's into blustery, extravagant, agitated threats of lawsuits, and boasts about past threats and lawsuits, particularly over imagined defamation. Consider how he reacted with fury and threats to an Above the Law post about his little pal Kyle Bristow:
Not to mention Van Dyke's frivolous attempt to sue a sitting District Attorney to force him into a deposition explaining why he rescinded Van Dyke's job offer. It's possible to feel a little sympathy here for Van Dyke — he closed his practice and sold a home — but his theory is ridiculous. The issue is that District Attorney Stephen B. Tyler did an abysmally poor job of vetting Van Dyke before offering him vast power as a prosecutor. But Van Dyke thinks the issue is that nobody ought to be allowed to say "hey, maybe don't hire a bigoted lunatic to be a prosecutor, huh?" and that anyone who says that (which, by the way, would be classic petitioning the government, protected by the First Amendment) owes him money. No, Jason. No. Ask a real lawyer to explain how that works.
Before I explain why I think Texas attorney Jason L. Van Dyke is a bigot – and a cowardly, cringing one at that — let me explain how it matters. Bigotry in the abstract isn't against the law, and shouldn't be. Most of the bigoted things Van Dyke allegedly said are obviously protected by the First Amendment, as is his right to associate with awful people. It's only an issue for two reasons. First, overt bigots shouldn't be hired as prosecutors. Only genteel people who will let the criminal justice system's manifest structural bigotry take care of business should be hired as prosecutors. Second, Van Dyke threatens people — physically and with litigation — when they comment on his bigotry. That's news.
Van Dyke's been a conservative bomb-thrower for a long time, but that's not the same as bigotry. His rhetoric, though, gradually veered in that direction. Years back he filed a truly execrably writen amicus brief in a gay marriage case.1 His activism — including that and some work on behalf of Young Americans for Freedom — earned some pushback from gay rights activists, including one who published documents relating to an expunged criminal proceeding against Van Dyke. Van Dyke tried, belatedly and unsuccessfully, to have his old records sealed. When he failed, he flamed out in classic Van Dyke style on a blog he has now memory-holed:
AIDS Infected Faggot and his Moonbat Buddy Are Playing With Fire
AIDS-ridden highway rest stop bathroom connoisseur Todd Heywood may not like what he gets when he plays with fire. When I first heard that he managed to convince a judge to essentially ignore the law and the clear intent of the Michigan legislature, I thought about just letting this one go. The truth of the matter is that Todd Heywood will die a horrible death due to complications from AIDS and will be screaming and rotting in Hell before I am even halfway into my career. Unfortunately for him, I don’t think there are any reststops on the road to the Malebolge – although I am sure he will find himself in the company of an entire legion of faggots.
Suffice to say, I am not going to let this stand. I plan on filing an Application for Leave to Appeal with the circuit court by the end of next week. In the interim, I am nearly finished compiling the information needed for a lawsuit that I intend to file against these two moonbats. Maybe, after spending a fortune on legal bills only to end up paying a hefty judgment, they will think twice before they tangle with me again.
Earlier this year, curious about where else Mr. Van Dyke had been expressing himself, @AsherLangton did a little digging. He found that someone posting on the notorious white supremacist site Stormfront under the name "WNLaw" (White Nationalist Law, one presumes) had remarkable parallels to Van Dyke. These screenshots are reprinted with his permission, and the investigative work is all his:
This began Van Dyke's campaign of threats — both ambiguous and explicit — against @AsherLangton.
In April, spurred by his threats, I wrote to Mr. Van Dyke seeking comment about @AsherLangton's discoveries — both inquiring whether he did, in fact, post on Stormfront, and asking whether he thought that had a bearing on his suitability for working as a prosecutor. He responded with what I would characterize as evasive, contradictory, game-playing, and increasingly agitated emails, which included him promising "swift and certain punishment"2, a statement that he would make an example "in Court or otherwise" of me or anyone else who "damages his career" with a story, and saying "prepare for full retaliation." Judge the emails yourself in a footnote.3 — I have removed only references to a third party who attempted to mediate between us. I would characterize them as denying he was WNLaw at Stormfront, arguing that there was nothing necessary wrong with posting on Stormfront depending on the content, saying that he'd need to see the posts to comment, saying that the media misrepresents what racism is, and (as far as I could figure) saying that someone else was posting stuff pretending to be him.
Subsequently Mr. Van Dyke has become a vocal Proud Boy:
Proud Boys are proud of not masturbating except within approximately five feet of a woman, ritualistic public tickle fights, and — notwithstanding the foregoing — Western Culture and their imagined role in creating it.
I find the evidence persuasive that Van Dyke is and always was WNLaw. My view is that a willing resident of Stormfront is, in fact, a bigot. My view is that the Proud Boys are not Stormfront, but largely because they aren't brave enough to be Stormfront in public. Your views may vary.
What do you call an unbalanced, violent-threat-spewing, vexatious-litigating, bigoted, court-defrauding proudly-unethical simple-minded lout in Texas?
A member of the Texas State Bar, apparently.
Most of what Van Dyke is doing (apart from the fraud on the court and, perhaps, some of the threats) is legal. More vexatious lawsuits will be dealt with with appropriately, in court, using Texas' quite good anti-SLAPP statute. Anyone threatened with litigation should feel free to reach out for help finding pro bono counsel. More florid threats, or actual violence, will be handled by appropriate authorities, who respond well to thorough documentation.
Edited to add: New threats since I wrote this will appear here.
- Representative sample:
The reason why banning same-sex marriage is a legitimate state interest is because the State of Michigan’s inherent police powers authorize the government to promote the health, safety, morals, and public welfare of its people, and it is respectfully submitted that same-sex marriage is an affront to the health, safety, morals, and public welfare of the residents of the State of Michigan — which is why the Western and American legal traditions have proscribed sodomy — much less same-sex marriage — for thousands and hundreds of years, respectively.
- That was on April 26, 2017, and it is July 9, 2017 as I write this. ▲
Mr. Van Dyke:
I'm an attorney and writer on free speech issues.
I have seen evidence suggesting that you post on the Stormfront under the name WNLaw. Are you willing to comment on that?
If, hypothetically, you do post on Stormfront, do you feel that has any bearing on your suitability as a prosecutor? Do you fee that considering that as a factor would violate your rights?
I read a story that quoted you as saying you would sue anyone who told the prosecutor's office not to hire you. If someone did tell them not to hire you, do you believe that would be actionable? Under what theory?
I will be writing about the story and will welcome any comment.
1) Given that, by an odd coincidence, I have gotten a number of e-mails from some other guy named "Asher Langton" about this same issue, I am not willing to comment at this time because it would appear that a number of people have already made up their minds with respect to this allegation. Because I feel that is the case, I decline to comment.
2) I frankly have no idea what goes on at Stormfront aside from that fact that, on occasion, I have had some clients that have stated to me that someone from the website gave them a referral. I don't read it or post to it and my understanding that is that it is a website that promotes white supremacy. Since the definition of white supremacy is pretty wide, I am guessing based upon the nature of your question that its typical member espouses views that go well beyond what the editorial pages of places like The Huffington Post, Salon, Slate, and MSNBC would refer to as "white supremacy." With those assumptions on mind, I can state that it would absolute be a problem for a prosecutor to espouse views like, for example, holocaust denial or the mass disenfranchisement of all non-whites. The reason is because the Texas Disciplinary Rules of Professional Conduct set forth special obligations for prosecutors and such views would call into question whether that prosecutor could perform his job in accordance with the rules. For example, I wouldn't trust a prosecutor to hand over exculpatory/Brady material if that prosecutor's view was that Jews belong in prison simply because they are Jews. You also can't have prosecutors who are going to sponsor evidence or testimony suggesting that someone's race makes them a future danger to society (as was the case in this article: http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/supreme-court-overturns-duane-buck-death-sentence-murder-texas-racism-a7594286.html)
That having been said, there is also a point where it's clearly inappropriate to terminate someone's employment because of their political views. The examples I cite above are far different from someone saying "I disagree with Obergefell and don't think gay marriage should be illegal", "I think all illegal immigrants should be deported", or "There is an anti-white bias in the media and in higher education." The line may be unclear, but I think the ultimate issue is: "Does this person espouse views that will hinder them from performing their duties as a prosecutor in a manner consistent with the rules of professional conduct?" If the answer is no, I don't think it's relevant. Finally, I would add that everyone makes mistakes in their life. Everyone has done and said things that they regret, and that includes me. At some point, I think they have a right to move on with their lives. The "right to be forgotten" that we are seeing take shape in Europe's court's is something we desperately need here.
3) That story is accurate and I fully intend to take additional legal action in this matter. The legal action that is currently pending exists solely for the purpose of obtaining evidence to determine whether I have a legal claim against third parties for defamation, tortious interference with contract, tortious interference with prospective relations, public disclosure of private facts, false light, and similar torts. I have documented this entire incident very carefully. At this point, I have sufficient documentation to prove damages in the amount of $163,425.00 (and I haven't even finished going through all of the documentation). I would also note that those damages are only the liquidated economic damages that I have calculated so far. If I am able to discover evidence sufficient to bring a claim, I anticipate that my economic damages will be somewhere in the neighborhood of $200,000.00.
Although I am not going to comment about the other instance, this incident actually marks the second time (not the first) since January 2017 that I have learned about someone sticking their nose in my private affairs. I am no longer going to tolerate it. If, as I suspect, someone stuck their nose into my business with Victoria County, there are going to be dire consequences. That's a promise. If I accomplish nothing else at the end of the day, people are going to learn that the days of "strategic patience" with those who butt into my personal affairs are over. From this point forward, there is going to be swift and certain punishment.
Jason L. Van Dyke
Attorney & Counselor at Law
Mr. Van Dyke:
I don't interpret that as a denial. I have to say that the evidence that it's you on Stormfront appears overwhelming. In addition, I take your threats and attempted intimidation as corroborative.
I will be happy to print any statement from you when I write about this.
The only reason I agreed to answer your questions is because [third party] vouched for you. I deny, and continue to deny, any affiliation with Stormfront. If you, or anyone else, makes the decision to damage my career with your story, they will be made example of in Court or otherwise.
[Third party] & Ken:
The simple fact of the matter is that this Asher Langton (real name Jacob as it turns out) asked me about this right around the same time that Mr. White contacted me about the story. I answered Mr. White's question promptly and in a courteous and respectful manner. It would appear that Mr. White had his mind made up about me before he posed the questions, which to me begs the question of why he bothered asking for my side of the story in the first place. Who the hell is this Langton guy (other than a professional troll that I am now on a collision course with) anyway and why is he sticking his nose in my business?
Furthermore, I have no idea just what the hell I am being accused of aside from having an account on this Stormfront website and posting to it. What I propose is this: I deny, and continue to deny, any type of affiliation with that website. That having been said, it appeared to me that Mr. White was asking for my opinion with respect to the other articles concerning the DA job clusterfuck. One of the three questions posed was this: " If, hypothetically, you do post on Stormfront, do you feel that has any bearing on your suitability as a prosecutor? Do you fee that considering that as a factor would violate your rights?"
Seeing as how I did not make these posts, I have no access to them. Seeing as I have no idea how many posts were made by this guy, when they were made, on what topic they were made, or what was posted – I am being asked to offer an opinion on something while being kept completely in the dark. Does Mr. White have copies of content that was posted by whoever this "WNLaw" character is which contain racist, anti-semetic, or otherwise scandalous content? If he does, he is free to send them to me, at which point I will look at them and offer my comments. I think I have already been quite clear that, on the question of a website like Stormfront, the question of whether posting on there has bearing on one's suitability as a prosecutor really depends upon what was posted. Are we talking posts about holocaust denial? Or are we talking posts about law (as the account name would suggest) and what not.
Bottom Line: If the person that Jacob (and now Mr. White) believe to be me has done nothing wrong aside from being a member of this Stormfront website and potentially taking my identity as his own, then we are really arguing about nothing since my position would simple be "it doesn't matter." However, seeing as how I have no idea what this guy has posted or over what period of time, any request that I evaluate that is unreasonable.
Jason L. Van Dyke
Attorney & Counselor at Law
The pattern of threats of litigation and physical violence is worthy of a story. I'll be writing one. I will be happy to include any comment Mr. Van Dyke wishes to offer.
That's fine. I have tried to make an offer in compromise. Prepare for full retaliation.
Here is another example of a website that I didn’t create and which was created without my permission or knowledge.
As with all of this Stormfront stuff, there isn’t a damn thing I can do about it.
There are only two social media accounts that I currently use: Facebook and Gab. The Facebook is set to private and I only rarely use Gab. I previously used Twitter, but do not anymore. All other social media accounts, purported blogs, message board accounts, etc. are fraudulent.
Jason L. Van Dyke
Attorney & Counselor at Law
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