Taylor Swift is suing former radio DJ David “Jackson” Mueller for $1, a symbolically low amount for the alleged sexual assault that took place backstage while he was taking a photo with her. Fans speculate Taylor wants to set a precedent for victims of assault. She doesn’t need the money, but it’s an act of solidarity to other women in similar cases of assault that go unheard.
Taylor filed the lawsuit against the David after he sued her for $3 million. The DJ claims he was fired from his job after the singer went public with her accusations. The GRAMMY winner’s case centres around a photograph, taken in 2013, showing the then 23-year-old singer, David and his girlfriend posing together during a fan meet-and-greet. The 51-year-old’s hand is pictured behind Taylor, just below her waist. Taylor claims he lifted her skirt and grabbed her rear end.
Both David and Taylor appeared in court on Aug 8 in Denver, Colorado. Douglas Baldridge, the singer’s attorney, shared that she is “absolutely certain” she was sexually assaulted by David and is prepared to prove it. Her attorney also pointed out a serious flaw in the way people view assault allegations, saying, "What's wrong with this picture? A woman gets assaulted, a woman reports it, and she gets sued.” This is Taylor’s way of showing women that “you can always say no,” Douglas added.
Unsurprisingly, many Taylor fans lined up outside of the courthouse to show their support for the popstar. The Guardian spoke to Vega Zaringlee, a 12-year-old fan, who backed up the singer by saying, “I love how she’s suing him for $1 because she doesn’t need the money but she wants to make it a point that women don’t need to take this.”
A similar case occurred in 2014 when popstar Kesha sued Sony Music and producer Dr. Luke (born Lukasz Gottwald) after claiming Lukasz sexually assaulted and abused her. The 43-year-old countersued her for defamation and breach of contract. Earlier this year, Kesha’s attempt to amend her lawsuit against Dr. Luke was rejected by a New York judge.