[Nifong’s] acts tore his own city apart, in a racial/class divide, allowing people on both sides of the racial divide who live to exploit racial tension, for no other purpose than their own self-aggrandizement or personal advancement—allowed them a stage from which to spew their self-serving but pathetic hatred.
And some of you in the media call them community activists.
As if responding to Cheshire's cue, a headline from yesterday’s Herald-Sun: “‘Innocent’ Declaration Angers Local Activists.” [emphasis added] The story: Nifong citizens’ committee co-chair
I don't really care what you think, if you think that the girl was lying or telling the truth, but what happened to the judicial system we have in this country where the jury is the only one who can say if someone is innocent? If he thought there wasn't enough evidence, he could dismiss the charges, but this man [Cooper] took it a step further, he said “We believe these three are innocent.”
Peterson seems unaware that under “the judicial system we have in this country,” a jury declares someone guilty or not guilty. Innocent is not among the options that juries consider.
That such preposterous declarations came from Peterson, who’s nothing more than a professional race-baiter, is no surprise. (Nor is it surprising that the H-S described Mangum as a “victim” in the article.) Stunningly, however, Lavonia Allison also attended the affair. As chair of Durham Committee on the Affairs of Black People—the city’s most powerful political action committee—Allison can hardly be dismissed as a crackpot.
While some key Durham African-Americans, such as state senator-elect Floyd McKissick, have publicly rebuked Mike Nifong, others seem determined to go down with the ship. At the April 11, 2006 NCCU forum, Pastor John Bennett demanded that Nifong promise not only to arrest three players, but to parade them before cameras in handcuffs.
Last week, after Cooper publicly declared the players innocent, Bennett was not satisfied. “I do believe that something out of the ordinary did happen in that house,” he told WRAL. “I’m not saying it was rape. I'm not necessarily saying it was them.” Of course, if we believe Mangum’s final story—that she was at one point suspended in mid-air—then something out of the ordinary did happen in that house.
In a post-press conference interview on MSNBC, Georgia Goslee personified those who “live to exploit racial tension, for no other purpose than their own self-aggrandizement.” Declared the former federal prosecutor (and fitness instructor):
Something in the back of my mind still tells me that something occurred in that house on that night that the—that the victim [sic] said that she was raped. If the legal authorities inThen there’s Houston Baker, who’s now at Vanderbilt. A student considering taking Baker’s class e-mailed the former Group of 88 stalwart yesterday, noting Baker’s comments on events at Duke and wondering whether he could be treated fairly in the class if he disagreed with Baker’s views.
have so ruled, then I as a lawyer, we don't have a choice but to accept it. But I just still believe that something happened that wasn't quite right in that house that night. North Carolina
I still will always believe—and it’s just my opinion, as an attorney who's tried many cases, investigated [sic] many cases, I just still believe—that something happened more than a false accusation.
On a night when 32 pople [sic] have been slaughtered. When the Chancellor of Vandebilt [sic] has issued an amazingly compassionate statement about the horror, you write to me about fairness? Shame on you.
What the Virginia Tech massacre has to do with Baker’s fairness toward students at his school the tenured professor of English did not reveal.
But perhaps the most appalling example of “self-serving but pathetic hatred” came from an April 12 interview with Julianne Malveaux. Malveaux has been a regular commentator for the past decade on national politics and cultural trends. She also was recently named president of
When asked about the case on National Public Radio (slide ahead to 11.09 on this recording), Malveaux stated,
Those kids don’t deserve an apology. They hired strippers . . . They were known for hooliganistic behavior separate and apart from what happened to this woman. So, no, they don’t deserve any apologies at all . . . Not from the professors, not from anyone else.
Furthermore, obviously the woman—the victim in this case—has changed her story a couple [sic] of times . . . Well, frankly, I believe that something did happen there. We know that something happened. We know [sic] that these guys lied about their names, so she had difficulty identifying [them]. Something happened to this woman and she deserves a lot of our compassion.
, you know, offered to pay her way through school, and I think that’s a fine offer. I hope she takes him up on it. But I really, you know—I think something happened here. I think these guys are bad apples. They may not—you may not be able to prove rape; you may not be able to prove anything. But something did happen there, and it was something that was wrong. Jackson
So speaks the president of a