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Judge dismisses lawsuit claiming Miley Cyrus' pic discriminated against Asians

Miley-cyrus A judge today dismissed a discrimination lawsuit against Miley Cyrus that argued that Asians were harmed by a photo that showed the teen idol and her friends pulling back their eyelids.

The novel legal claim was filed by Lucie J. Kim in a class action suit against the singer earlier this year that sought $4,000 in damages for each Asian and Pacific Islander living in Los Angeles County. The suit argued that Cyrus, 16, violated a state law that prohibits businesses from discriminating against people based on race, gender, ethnicity and other traits.

The picture appeared on websites like gossipteen.com in February, and Cyrus repeatedly apologized. Cyrus’ attorney, Bryan M. Sullivan, referred all inquiries to Miley's spokesperson, who declined comment.

Henry M. Lee, Kim’s attorney, said his client is considering appealing the case. The fact that the judge did not order Kim to pay the tens of thousands of dollars in legal fees Cyrus was seeking shows that the judge thought his client made a good-faith argument, Lee said.

-- Seema Mehta

Photo: The image of Miley Cyrus and her friends pulling back their eyelids that sparked the controversy. Credit: Gossipteen.com

Comments () | Archives (27)

I'm a plaintiffs' attorney and even *I* think this attorney should be sanctioned for bringing this case. Seriously? You can burn the American flag and it's protected by the First Amendment but this guy thinks you can't take a racist picture? How did this guy pass the bar?

Lucie Kim should be ashamed. That is the stupidest most frivolous lawsuit I have ever heard. Ms. Kim should be required to pay for wasting the courts time.

Ms. Kim's lawsuit shows once again that we are a nation just waiting to be offended.What a waste of taxpayer's money especially at a time when California needs it the most. Shame on Ms Kim and her lawyer, or should I say Ambulance Chaser!

This case was rediculous. That it was not "dismissed with prejudice" outrages me. This Party In The USA that cost $60k+ in legal fees I guessd should teach Miley something. Where else but in the US? The American legal system is the laughing stock of the world community. It is not the legal systems responsibility to teach our children proper manners or mediate social behaviors such as this.

I hope the Plaintiffs appeal. If the picture in question was of Miley doing a Nazi salute next to a Jewish "friend" (with friends like that, who needs enemies?), I guarantee you it would be all over the news... but I suspect Miley knows that would be too offensive, however, with Asians, who the @#%! cares!!! Well, I hope Miley will learn otherwise, not through some cheap apology, but with cold hard $$$ as it is the only way any celebrity will learn.

I don't see why Miley would do this she should be more careful with what she does, because shes a celebrity and people are watching her every move

Miley's not the brightest teen. Not too many teens that are. Now she'll have ninja assassins out to get her.

I see 7 people in that picture. Why single out Miley Cyrus? Cause she's rich?

I'm an American currently living in Japan. Last May I was in Kyoto Japan on a city bus with many Japanese High School students. They were speaking Japanese and joking around. They noticed our group and after awhile a few of them made "big eyes" by pulling their eyelids upward and laughing. I had never seen that before and actually thought it was kind of funny. They noticed the difference between our eyes and were fooling around. Did I feel discriminated against? No way...they were kids having a laugh and no harm was done. It's absurd to take everything someone does as personal and expect reimbursement for damages.
What a joke of a case.

Her actions--and those of her friends--was asinine and puerile. I agree the lawsuit should have been thrown out, as a country where anyone can sue anyone because they feel insulted would be a hard place for even us liberals to live in. However, I certainly would not blame any Asian-Americans if they no longer felt Miley was the best role model for their kids. And that, more than anything, is the correct response to this kind of idiocy.

Wow, this is the definition of frivolous. Looks like Lucie Kim is in the business of promoting thought control. The mere fact that our court system observed this nonesense is unsettling to anybody that values free thought and liberty.

Using the arm of the state to quash ANY expression is petty and disgusting, Lucie Kim would probably feel more at home in North Korea. By the way, does that Asian guy in the photo get any money if she did win the case?

Come on Ms. Kim, why stop with Ms. Cyrus? Round up the other "victims" and refile as a class action. Have you even looked at that picture? Just imagine the possibilities...

Three people are clearly squinting, they are obviously discriminating against the visually impaired. All blind people should be paid!

One guy even has a drink in his hand. That's not right. He can drink but alcoholics can't. All drunks should be paid!

I don't see any African-Americans in the picture, pay them too!

How about the guy mocking American Indians with that pow-wow pose, sign them up!

The guy on the left is wearing a cross, atheists will be outraged. They may not believe in God, but they believe in money like everyone else. Cah-ching!

You should broaden your horizons, don't isolate yourself in victimhood, share it, that's right, soak it up good -- because that's what leaches do.

That pretty much defines a stupid lawsuit. The First Amendment allows Miley and friends to act like idiots. Besides, no one who saw the photo suffered any financial or emotional harm.

As an asian, I am offended by her actions. $4,000 is hardly suffcient payment for my loss.....

These judges and lawyers are such crooks...why did it take so long to dismiss this lawsuit, causing her to pay thousands for her defense...

It not illegal to make slope eyes or Hitler salutes, although obviously inappropriate. Now the offended parties have an option of not hanging out or not engaging in photo ops, but not extorting money from these people...

silly, stupid plaintiffs...

At least there's a picture of them so employers can use appropriate desecration during employment procedures...

amazing, absolutely amazing. this is an utterly disgusting display of human existence.

It's outrages that such a suit would even make it to court. This girl Kim, is looking for fame and fortune through the courts. Kids do stupid things and live to regret it. They come to this country to escape the brutality of government intervention then do the same thing. I am so sick of people trying to tell other people what they can and can not do. 4,000 for each asian. Who does she think she is the behavior sheriff. And her lawyer is a scumbag for even accepting the case. I was about one thing Money! Grow up MS. Kim, A lot of things are objectionable but people do not sue over it. What an embarrassment Lucie Kim is.

like that little brat can't afford to pay her legal fees! people here are ignorant to the fact that racism is a slippery slope.
i even read that the Hitler salute is LEGAL ?
even Germany remedied that!
i am Not white but i won't bother saying anything more, i know i would be jumped upon.
your country is racist.
hate crimes are up! i read it in YOUR newspapers!
wake up america.
you are living in the filth that is "stars" like miss "Miley" here create.
i hope you drown in it.

My reaction to something like this would be just instant violence. It's equivalent to calling an African American the "N" word.

This lady was in it for the money. Thats it. And what business was Miley representing that they could sue her for discriminating, even if that was what she was doing? People these days.....


As an Asian person, I'm at a loss for how I should be offended by this picture. Am I missing something here?

when you mix races like the social engineers in this country have done, don't be surprised if you end up with race riots.it's human nature.look at obama, the blacks love him, the fat white women love him, asians, hispanics love him, but we white men hate his guts. he is not one of us, he doesn't claim to be half white.

As a proud American of Asian descent, I think both sides of this incident are a bit saddening. I don't think what Kim did was a good idea. She took a public stand against casual racism for symbolic reasons, but in a way that made little sense and could garner no one's support. All she ended up doing was making herself - and by her self-association, all Asian-Americans - look petulant and litigious, which is especially ironic because Asians use courts much less than average.

However, it's also amazing that a white teenage celebrity today would still think it's fine and "just a joke" to mock the features of a race who as far as I know have done nothing wrong to her. I do think that racist views of Asians are more publicly condoned than those for any other group, as I've seen online for this issue and sometimes in real life. Asian-Americans still are seen as "exotic", odd, or not really American, and hence it's only a joke when they mock their strange feature. The fact that the singer probably didn't mean to be very racist makes it even more bothersome as it's so casually accepted. This seems to be true even though all the Asians born here I grew up with, some of whom have had families going back into the 1800's, are damn proud to be Americans.

My college friend, who is of Japanese origin going back 4 generations in the US, did ROTC and has now serving in Iraq for three years in a field artillery unit. He won the trust of his platoon, who were at first skeptical of him, by being a tough ass, 5'7" SOB. He's now a respected captain commanding a battery over there. But once when he was back in the states on leave, he was at a nightclub with a past girlfriend he had reconnected with and nearly had to fight a couple of rednecks. This was because he was Asian and she was white, so they started shoving him and insulting his buzz cut, not realizing that he had it because he was back from fighting for the country they lay their filth on. He decided, though, not to beat all three of them they deserved, because as an officer he could not draw a public incident a fight may have led to. So he walked away from it honorably. He's probably less mad than I am about it because he's seen it all before and worse in Iraq, but I do wonder how he keeps up morale when he's seen that back here. Like I said, I'm proud to be an American as he is, but certain things about how we view and treat all Americans of all colors have to change.

Although the lawsuit is silly and frivolous, pictures like these do make me cringe a bit. Try growing up Asian in a non asian neighborhood. Childhood traumas do last a long time.

I wonder what would happen if Miley and friends did a Nazi salute or put blackfaces

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