Monday, December 10, 2007

Q&A

Q: How difficult was it to maintain a timeline/deadline while writing the book given the constant new developments in the case? It seemed that things continued to change and develop right up until the publication. Was it difficult to format the book given the swings in the case?

A: This wasn’t as much of a problem as it might have seemed at first glance. The book involved considerable research beyond the blog, so many of the shifts in the case I could anticipate in advance. That said, this was a case that always had more than its share of surprises, and both Stuart and I were working very hard keeping up with things right up until the book went to press.

Q: Just how much more could be written with what has developed since publication? It almost seems as if a second edition is possible…ie Nifong disbarred, Meehan fired, City Council vote to investigate the case, Durham insurance company threat to drop them, the bogus initial responses from DPD and Baker, the civil suit, the feds deferring to the state of NC, Gottlieb, Himan, Chalmers fade that is currently DPD, appeals, proposed changes in Durham, where Crystal wound up? etc.

A: Comparatively little, in the grand scheme of things, because—for purposes of length—any item added would needed to have been complemented by a subtracted item. There were a number of items from the Gottlieb and Himan depositions that I would have liked to have included in the text—but they’re in the notes (as extended notes). We have the disbarment and the Baker/Chalmers report in the epilogue, which was most fortunate: the book would have been incomplete without mentioning those events. All told, I would guess that the post-book material would have entailed around 5 pages of additions.

Q: Whose idea was it to write the book?

A: Stuart’s.

Q: How did you and Stuart end up working together?

A: I had never met Stuart before this case—though I was a regular reader of his columns. I e-mailed him after his first column on the case, and we had regular exchanges after that. Once it became clear in December that the case was moving toward a rapid conclusion, he asked if I wanted to co-author the book, and I said yes.

Q: And how did you allocate the work?

A: Mostly on the basis of who did the original research. For instance, Stuart attended the DC trial, so he wrote the first draft of that section. I had done most of the research on the medical (Levicy) issues, so I wrote the first draft of those sections. The book went through 10 or 12 drafts, however, and our writing blended as each draft proceeded.

Q: After further reflections are there any changes that you would make to UPI?

A: The book had three errors of fact (which we corrected in the notes); obviously, it would have been better had those not appeared in the book.

The only other issue I might have changed (and this applies to the blog as well) is to have comprehensively examined the alcohol section statistics of the Coleman Committee report. Two sources whose judgment I very much valued repeatedly pressed me to look at the figures that the committee used (which were supplied by Dean Bryan), on the grounds that they were weighted against the lacrosse players. I didn’t do so, because the issue struck me as irrelevant—I always considered the report an exoneration of the assault on the players’ character. Had I anticipated that Coleman would have, more than a year later, taken a far more aggressive public stance on the issue, I would have done more to examine the statistics behind the report.

Q: Did you and Stuart Taylor disagree about anything in regards to the writing of UPI? How was it resolved?

A: We didn’t disagree on anything of consequence. There were lots of issues that we discussed; in each case, we reached consensus, usually by e-mail discussions.

Q: Based on what we have learned to date about the Duke lacrosse rape hoax, would the creation of faculty Truth and Reconciliation Committees at universities across the country be an appropriate effort to protect students, prevent abuse and promote faculty/student communication?

A: Yes. Which is why, unfortunately, figures like the Group of 88 will adamantly oppose any such move, or anything that shines a spotlight on their teaching or research practices.

Q: The central theme of your book is the threat to justice (and therefore to all of us) from mindless "political correctness". Is there anything further you wish to add to the theme now, 18 months later?

A: To me, the most striking elements of the case came after it was clear that Nifong and Mangum had perpetrated a fraud. Yet even then, not only could the Group of 88 not apologize, but they continued to offer absurd defenses (“drunkenness” happened, the Piot article) of their behavior. Similarly, people like Bob Ashley or Byron Calame provided bizarre rationalizations of their papers’ approach to the case. That record suggests an extreme closed-mindedness that should concern anyone who cares about the academy or the media.

Q: Many of us are dissatisfied with the discovery, through your help, of the danger our children face from the world of injustice thriving on many of our campuses. Not much has changed, not even on the Duke campus. Is there any follow up you would recommend?

A: One easy answer: the situation is not going to get better on its own. One purpose of the Group Profile series was to provide a sense of what passes for “scholarship” in many disciplines, with an eye toward pointing out that such professors control future hires as well. The academy, in short, is likely to get more extreme: if this case occurred in 2016 rather than 2006, with the likely hiring patterns at Duke over the next decade I suspect we would have dealt with a “Group of 188” rather than a Group of 88.

The response, therefore, needs to come from other stakeholders in higher education: trustees, alumni, and parents. Bob Steel has made it clear—for whatever reason—that he has no problem as Duke BOT chairman with a faculty whose personnel policies produce figures like Wahneema Lubiano. Hopefully, future Duke trustees will look differently on the situation. Engaged alumni can influence enormous impact on a university environment—as has occurred, most recently, at Dartmouth.

Parents, however, tend to be passive on academic matters—in part because that’s the way it’s always been, in part for practical reasons. Higher education is a seller’s market—every elite university has far more applicants than it can accept. So it’s my sense that most parents are grateful that their sons or daughters get into a good school, and don’t rock the boat. (In this respect, the Dowds are among the heroes of the case—rather than quietly going away, they stood up for principle, and won.)

I hope that, at some point, a group of parents will start approaching higher education from the standpoint of consumers—perhaps by asking why they should spend nearly $50,000 a year to have a university employee call their children “secret racists” (Farred); or suggest without foundation that their children advocated genocide against Native Americans (Wood); or disseminate information about their children that the professor either knew or should have known was false (Holloway).

Such pressure, right now, doesn’t exist. But it’s not hard to imagine even small, media-savvy groups of parents (20-30) exercising considerable influence.

Q: If you had it to do over again, would you? Are the results you have seen worth the effort you have put into it?

A: Yes; and yes.

Q: Did Duke, or anyone acting on its behalf, threaten you with litigation for any of your postings?

A: Yes, a threat arrived several months ago from one member of the Group of 88. It claimed that the blog had said defamatory things about her that the blog, in fact, had not said.

Q: Did Jim Coleman ever respond/apologize to you and/or Stuart for his letter to the Chronicle?

A: He did not apologize, nor did he supply evidence to substantiate his claims. He has, however, come under attack for similarly overblown rhetoric in another post-case development.

Q: Are you considering a second book that details your blog experience and the responses to it?

A: No. In this respect, the blog stands on its own.

Q. Looking at the current status of this case as an historian, do you think this has been a significant historical event, and by that I mean do you think this case and its aftermath will produce significant changes outside of Durham, and/or will be a topic in history textbooks in years to come?

A: I’m going to post some closing thoughts tomorrow about the historical legacy of the case, and will discuss this question then.

Q. Although there have been many comments about racial factors that fueled these events, do you think any longer-term systemic changes resulting from these events will benefit one race more than another?

A: To the extent that this case leads to due process-friendly changes in the North Carolina criminal justice system, such changes would disproportionately benefit minorities, who are disproportionately criminal defendants. This fact, of course, makes the pro-Nifong stance of the state NAACP in the case all the more inexplicable.

Q: Who was the nexus between Duke and the DPD during the early phase of the hoax investigation, supplying information to the DPD that could only have been accessed by University personnel?

A: The answer is unclear. The State Bar depositions suggested a closer relationship than Duke had previously acknowledged. Duke has, of course, never provided a full accounting of the DPD’s performance in the case (beyond the embarrassing Bowen/Chambers report), and it’s unlikely the University will ever do so.

Q: Who provided Ryan McFadyen's email to the DPD? And who released it to the public?

A: This is one of the great unanswered questions of the case. Based on the information now available, it appears as if someone at Duke is the most likely culprit, but there’s no hard evidence one way or the other. Had a federal investigation occurred, this question might have been answered. Absent one, however, I suspect we’ll never know.

Q: How did the pressure brought to sign the original and subsequent statements from the faculty manifest itself? It would seem to ripple out from a few ring-leaders.

A: That is my sense. The ringleaders were Lubiano, Karla Holloway, and then-AAAS chairman Charles Payne. Not every faculty member on campus was asked to sign: Lubiano appears to have solicited signatures only from departments and professors she considered ideologically predisposed to back the statement’s agenda.

Q: Given that both the blog and the book contain information that could only have come from Duke faculty, without naming names and citing specific information, what was the nature of the cooperation you received from Duke faculty after your prominence in the case became known?

A: I developed a cooperative relationship with many sources, including quite a few people at Duke. Many of my sources were in a difficult position: they were outraged by the Group of 88's conduct, but at the same time, publicly criticizing the Group could expose them to retaliation--on the job front for those without tenure, in future events on campus for those with tenure. I wholly understood their dilemma: if this case proved nothing else, it was that the Group of 88 couldn't be counted on to behave in an ethical or a professional manner.

Q: What type of reactions (negative or positive) did you receive from Duke faculty?

A: It ran the gamut. With one (private) exception, the Group of 88 followed the lead of William Chafe, Alex Rosenberg, and Charlie Piot. On the other hand, I had positive reactions from 40 or so Duke professors who wrote me at various points in the case. I also had a perfectly professional relationship with the Duke administration, especially John Burness, even though I grew increasingly critical of Brodhead's decisions as the blog progressed.

---------

Blog-related questions:

Q: What first aroused your interest in the case enough to start this blog? Did you ever think your work would bring so many readers?

A: The Group of 88’s ad stimulated my initial interest in the case—it struck me at the time, and continues to strike me, as a betrayal of the signatories’ duties as professors, and I can’t think of a similar document (where so many professors rushed to judgment and in the process increased the vulnerability of their own students) in the history of American higher education.

I initially estimated that the blog would attract 100 readers a day; I would have considered a 1000-viewer week well beyond expectations. As it turned out, since 8-28-06, the blog has had just over 3.5 million unique visitors and just over 6.2 million hits.

Q: What motivated you to keep posting every night at midnight?

A: Pragmatic concerns. I believed (correctly) that the only way for the blog to develop a consistent readership was through consistent posts. I settled on the 12.01 idea by imitating the Times and Washington Post, which always do their first daily editions on-line at midnight. I had been a regular reader of both for some time.

Q: Did you interview or attempt to interview Crystal Gail Mangum?

A: I never interviewed her. I tried to contact her, though I didn’t expect a positive response, and didn’t receive one. That said, I doubt an interview would have been productive. This is a woman with deep psychological problems who spent a year constantly changing her story—and therefore anything that she said, on any issue, wouldn’t have had a shred of credibility.

Q: Did you ever get a response, comment or threat from Nurse Levicy?

A: No, no, and no. I did make several attempts to interview Levicy; she repeatedly did not respond.

Q: How important do you think DIW and UPI have been in putting things right in the public eye?

A: That’s not a question I can really answer. The fact that both the blog and the book received positive reviews, however, is an encouraging sign.

Q: What is Gaynor’s problem?

A: No comment . . . :)

Q: Why do you think they promoted Cpl. Addison?

A: Because the DPD still hasn’t come to grips with the fact that it spent months in a conscious attempt to frame three innocent people and send them to jail for 30 years.

Q: Do you think North Carolina was ripe for such a hoax, or was it just a “perfect storm?”

A: I don’t think this was a North Carolina issue—this is a state, after all, which has very good procedures on many criminal justice issues (open file discovery, emphasis on good lineup techniques). Duke and Durham, however, were ripe for such a hoax; indeed, it would be hard to imagine more fertile grounds.

Q: Have you enjoyed DIW?

A: It certainly was an interesting experience. I learned a tremendous amount—both about criminal justice issues and about media matters. In this respect, the experience will be a great help to me in the classroom, as well.

Q: What was the most frustrating issue in this case for you and how did you deal with it?

A: The most frustrating issue was seeing the far left (Piot, Robyn Wiegman, a few Group members) imitate the O’Reilly/Limbaugh argument and suggest that stray, extreme, anonymous comments reflected the viewpoint of the blog author. In part, this criticism came from a Luddite perspective—a fundamental misunderstanding of the nature of blogs. In part, the criticism suggested a bankruptcy of ideas from the far left on this case.

I resolved the problem, of course, through comment moderation, which I imposed with greatest reluctance.

Q: Do you believe that discovery in the civil case will be so incriminating that the feds and/or NC Atty. Gen. will no longer be able to pass the buck on an investigation?

A: Unfortunately, no. I would be amazed if Durham doesn’t settle before the discovery process gets going fully—for this very reason.

Q: Do you believe that Judge Smith telegraphed a message to the Atty. Gen and the Feds when he opined in the Nifong contempt hearing that he did not believe a conspiracy had taken place between Nifong and other parties.

A: No. It’s worth remembering that at the criminal contempt trial, Meehan offered what was at least the fourth distinct version of his interactions with Nifong. Smith, therefore, was operating from a contradictory evidentiary base. And Meehan wasn’t on trial, so a finding against Meehan would have been gratuitous.

Q: Have your conversations with the attorneys in the case led you to believe that Nifong made his first mistake (so far as the alienation of the legal community goes) when he "asked why one needs an attorney if one was not charged and has done nothing wrong."

A: Yes--there were two particularly egregious Nifong statements, remarks that cut to the core of the legal profession. This was one; the other, uttered during the campaign at a time when the Grievance Committee was considering whether or not to bring immediate charges against him, had the then-DA claiming that community disagreement over the merits of a case in and of itself was a reason why a case needed to go to trial--effectively rationalizing political trials.

Q: What has been your most thrilling experience while working on the lacrosse case?

A: In the courtroom on Dec. 15, 2006, hearing Brian Meehan say "yes" when Jim Cooney asked if the lab director and Mike Nifong had entered into an intentional agreement not to report all of the DNA test results.

61 comments:

Gary Packwood said...

hope you can find a way to post this Q&A section on the web site for UPI.

Wonderful questions and as always, strong straight to the point answers.

Thank you for all that you do for the academy and for the youngsters who are now students or will be students in the future.
::
GP

LieStoppers said...

Thanks from the LieStoppers Crew

Anonymous said...

Q: What has been your most thrilling experience while working on the lacrosse case?

A: In the courtroom on Dec. 15, 2006, hearing Brian Meehan say "yes" when Jim Cooney asked if the lab director and Mike Nifong had entered into an intentional agreement not to report all of the DNA test results.

Excellent question and answer! That was the perfect way to end a post. Thanks, K.C. Johnson!

miramar said...

KC, you mentioned that the alcohol statistics supplied to the Coleman committee were stacked against the lacrosse players. Can you explain this in a bit more detail? Do you believe that the administration was hoping for a more critical report on the lacrosse team's behavior?

sceptical said...

I posted this on Liestoppers Forum:

"KC Johnson has done a heroic job in his (formerly) daily midnight blog posts on the case and, with Stuart Tayor, in "Until Proven Innocent." He has a keen intellect that quickly cut to the core of the issues involved in the Duke lacrosse frame-up.

Perhaps with the exception of Joe Neff of the N&O, he did more than anyone to bring out the truth about this hoax. For example, KC'S analyses of the line-up issues played a key role in discrediting the April 2006 line-up staged by Gottlieb.

I have not always agreed with his conclusions (e.g. giving a pass to Inv. Ben Himan, who was the only police officer who appeared before the grand jury which indicted Dave Evans), but more than anyone KC Johnson has been right time after time in this case.

Reade, Collin and Dave owe KC a debt of gratitude (which was acknowledged at the post exoneration press conference), but so do all of us for teaching us about the importance of proper procedures and of academic standards. Like many of us, what started as an interesting academic case became more than that-- a struggle for justice that continues.

KC Johnson is a professor in the original sense of the word-- a teacher who espouses truth."

-- sceptical

no justice, no peace said...

Inre: Blue Committee Report...nothing more than a kiss.

"In The Godfather: Part II, Michael Corleone gives, in Havana, an unnaturally aggressive kiss on the mouth to his brother Fredo, effectively telling him that he is disowned from the family because he betrayed its interests. Michael has Fredo killed. This kiss has been called by mafia movie fans as "the kiss of death."

traveler said...

Professor Johnson, I thank you for all your time and effort put forth for your D-I-W blog. UPI and the HBO movie, are bonus successes, that I hope reward you well.

I think I have the subject for your next book, an autobiography. I read a large file about your tenure battle, lots of good stuff there.

Now you have your book, blog, and your trip to Israel, all of interest. In the future, how the CUNY faculty reacts to your academic criticism, and fame. I think your liberal cohorts will be frosty, and jealous!

You can add the upcoming civil trial events as well. If you have some interesting personal life stories, all the better. I even have a name for your next book, AND movie.
“Rebel With a Cause:
Duke-ing it out with 88½
Nincompoops.”

Anonymous said...

Off topic but of interest.

WRAL is now reporting that Durham police officers traded sex in return for not arresting prostitutes. At least one of the prostitutes saved DNA evidence. (Remember the blue dress)

Perhaps our friend Gottlieb was one of the officers.

Anonymous said...

Additional question, Do you think that additional legal problems may arise for the Gang of 88, Duke, DPD, or others as a result of continued comments on this case?

My particular concern is the various defenses many who supported this case still give, even though a reasonable person would know the facts.

This blog has been very instructive for me. I have a son participating in a different minor sport at a different university. My interest is not to tear down Duke, but to learn how I can help protect my son if the need arises.

Texas Mom said...

A big thank you from me, as well.

As long as higher education is disconnected from it's "customers" it will not respond to parents' concerns. The endowments of elite institutions are so huge and the money from the government is so readily available that the institutions need not be accountable. I have little hope about the future of higher education.

Fan-in-Maryland said...

I haven't posted before till now. I have been following this remarkable blog for over a year. My sincerest heartfelt thanks for what you have done in the name of truth. To say I am impressed is a woeful understatement. Maybe a better word is "WOW". The incredable difference between you and the pathetic G-88 is truly amazing. My your future career shine as brightly as your book and blog.
Best Regards
One who deeply appreciates your words

Anonymous said...

JLS says...

WRAL has an article on the search warrant concerning the "close" relationship of some DPD officers to some Durham hookers:

Search Warrant Reveals Details on Durham Police Sex Probe

Let the speculation begin on whether this affected the treatment of Mangum by the DPD.

Anonymous said...

I envy your writing ability. The quality of your arguments and the astounding quantity of your output are impressive, to say the least. Thanks for your efforts.

R.R. Hamilton said...

KC said...

Q: Do you think North Carolina was ripe for such a hoax, or was it just a “perfect storm?”

A: I don’t think this was a North Carolina issue—this is a state, after all, which has very good procedures on many criminal justice issues (open file discovery, emphasis on good lineup techniques). Duke and Durham, however, were ripe for such a hoax; indeed, it would be hard to imagine more fertile grounds.


I want to flesh out KC's answer a bit, because clearly he leaves the reader to wonder, "What to do you mean 'ripe for such a hoax' and 'hard to imagine more fertile grounds'?"

Durham County vote for Kerry in 2004: 68%
The rest of North Carolina: 43%

Every state seems to have at least one of these wacky "blue" counties that seem to invariably produce the most breathtaking injustices orchestrated by elected officials. My own home state has my beloved Austin, site of The University of Texas and located in Travis County.

Travis County vote for Kerry in 2004: 56%
The rest of Texas: 37%

May I point out that in 2000, in an election about as close as they come, Bush was winning rural counties that McGOVERN WON in the 1972 landslide rout? I want to share with DiW readers the site I consider the best on the U.S. presidential elections.

As the Democratic Party becomes increasingly a captive of the urban herd, all the psychological studies dealing with "mob mentalities" need to be applied to that party. I believe it is this phenomenon which created the "fertile ground" to which KC refers.

mac said...

I wonder how many people in the courtroom - (attorneys especially) - also said, under their breath,
"YESSSSSS!!!!!" when Meehan said yes?

"Thrilling" might not even be the half of it. That's what one might call a "Kaopectate moment."

mac said...

KC,

Your commendations should be many, some of them these qualities you've shown:
Diligence
Integrity
Wearilessness

I'm amazed at your accuracy and the sheer number of details you've assembled, both on DIW and with Stuart Taylor in UPI. And your ability to stay with a good story - (something an ADHD like myself has trouble with.)

I'm most amazed at your energy!

And most surprised at your generosity, sharing space with so many people.

It has been a pleasure to be on board the good ship DIW.

Mac

Anonymous said...

To add to r.r. hamilton's point re the political landscape in Durham: among voters who declare a party affiliation, there are approximately 3.3 Democrats for every Republican. Moreover, the Democrats in Durham are no longer of the "conservative", home-grown, southern type. Most are "true believer" leftists, and many are transplants from other regions. Durham has become a neo-liberal enclave (much like Chapel Hill) and the rich, white, liberal demographic is embedded in all aspects of life in Durham (with neo-liberal Duke connections of vital significance). It is not the Durham I grew up in in the 60's and 70's.

Debrah said...

H-S:


DNA collected in investigation of two officers

BY RAY GRONBERG : The Herald-Sun
Dec 10, 2007

DURHAM -- Investigators say the woman who's apparently at the center of allegations that Durham Police Department officers engaged in sexual misconduct gave them DNA evidence that could implicate two officers.

The claim appears in a search warrant filed late last week that detectives used to secure a sample of the woman's own DNA requested by State Bureau of Investigation.

In an affidavit supporting the warrant, Detective Art Holland said investigators have been talking to the woman since at least early October, and that they're looking into allegations that she'd had "numerous sexual encounters with Durham police officers."

During an initial interview on Oct. 4, she elaborated by telling investigators from the Police Department's Special Operations Division that she'd performed oral sex on and had intercourse with officers who were on duty, Holland said.

The affidavit focused on the actions of two officers, referred to only as "Officer 1" and "Officer 2."

Police Chief Jose Lopez and other city officials have declined to identify the targets of the investigation, contending that doing so would unfairly tarnish the reputations of the officers involved if the allegations don't prove to be true.

After the first interview, the woman -- termed by Holland a "known prostitute" -- told police of two subsequent encounters.

The first allegedly occurred on Oct. 27 with "Officer 1." Holland said the woman told police she talked with the officer while he was on patrol, and in the course of that conversation agreed to meet him again in Sherwood Park.

The park is off Cheek Road, between Fidelity Drive, North Miami Boulevard and Robinhood Road. It lies in the jurisdiction of District 1, the Police Department unit that covers eastern Durham.

Sources had previously indicated the misconduct investigation's targets were District 1 patrol officers. Initially, five officers were under suspicion, but three have been exonerated.

According to Holland, "Officer 1" parked his car on the west side of the park and walked to a spot near the park's tennis courts, about the length of a football field away. The woman met him there and performed oral sex on him. Afterward, the officer allegedly threw $10 at her.

The woman kept a condom allegedly used by the officer and later turned it over to investigators from the Special Operations Division.

The second encounter involved "Officer 2" and allegedly occurred on Nov. 4 in a house on North Briggs Avenue, Holland said. The street is also in District 1.

The woman was sleeping in a bedroom of the house when "Officer 2" showed up and asked where she was. He also checked to see if police were holding any unserved arrests warrants on her and a man Holland said was sleeping on the bedroom's floor.

There were no warrants on the man, but there was one for the woman, under an alias, Holland said. The officer then told the man to leave the room.

After the man left, the officer told the woman that her handling of the situation "would determine if she went to jail." She responded by performing oral sex on him to avoid detention, Holland said.

"Officer 2" didn't wear a condom. Holland said the woman spat the semen onto a washcloth she later gave to investigators.

Word of the investigation surfaced publicly on Nov. 8, but Holland's affidavit indicated that police hadn't been rushing to complete it.

The detective swabbed DNA samples from the mouths of the two officers on Nov. 28 and Nov. 29, and handed the samples and other evidence over to the SBI on Tuesday for testing.

SBI analysts told him to get a sample from the woman, as her DNA might appear in the evidence gathered from the two incidents.

Holland's warrant didn't explain why police hadn't already gathered a sample of the woman's DNA, but they quickly honored the SBI's request. Superior Court Judge Ronald Stephens signed the warrant on Thursday and Holland served it on Friday.

The woman by that time was in the Orange County Jail in Hillsborough, for reasons not explained in the warrant. Orange County Sheriff's Office records indicate that she's been in jail since Nov. 12 and is being held on an alleged probation violation pending a $30,000 secured bond.

N.C. Department of Correction records indicate that she has an extensive criminal record that goes back to 1991 and includes offenses in Durham, Person and Caswell counties.

According to the state, she has been in prison three times, and has been convicted of an assortment of charges including larceny, fraud, bad checks, forgery, driving while her license was revoked and unauthorized use of a conveyance. She has never been convicted of prostitution.

Holland is one of the Police Department's top detectives. He was the lead investigator in the Michael Peterson murder case, and more recently handled the fraud probe that yielded a guilty plea from Anita F. Bennett, the woman behind the city's small-business loan scandal.

It nonetheless was unclear why Holland or Special Operations Division personnel were handling the misconduct investigation. They work for the department's Investigative Services Bureau, commanded by Maj. Steve Mihaich.

The department has a separate internal-affairs unit in its Professional Standards Division. Capt. Ed Sarvis commands the Professional Standards Division and reports directly to Lopez.

Debrah said...

H-S letter:

How does Alleva survive?

I am flabbergasted to learn that Joe Alleva is still the athletic director at Duke University. Apparently, Duke lacked the moral courage to fire him. What's even more telling is that he lacked the moral fortitude to resign.

Alleva, you'll recall, was one of the leaders of the lynch mob that rushed to judgment on the three real victims of the lacrosse scandal. He shrugged off already overwhelming evidence that the players were innocent, saying, "It's not about the truth anymore. It's about the faculty [presumably the Gang of 88, who, it would not surprise me to learn, also retain their jobs], the special interest groups, the protesters, our reputation, the integrity of the university."

Not about the truth? Imagine that!

Duke's reputation? It's in the toilet, all the more so because many who stormed the lacrosse program, torches in hand, still have their jobs.

Duke's integrity? Nonexistent. How does an educational institution turn its back on that most fundamental concept of jurisprudence, "innocent until proven guilty?"

I would hope Duke's recruiters find it extremely difficult to talk any athletic prospect into committing. Would you play for a man who will exploit your talent, revel in your success, and turn his back on you the second you need his support?

Were I still teaching high school and one of my students asked me what I thought of Duke, I would be happy to share my opinion. That is, after I picked myself up off the floor from laughing.

David Highlands
St. Petersburg, Fla.
December 10, 2007

John said...

UNIVERSITY OF PC
As a Republican, I'm on the Fringe
By Robert Maranto
Sunday, December 9, 2007; Page B01
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/12/07/AR2007120701618.html

John said...

In Maranto's piece in today's Post, he states:

Ultimately, universities will have to clean their own houses. Professors need to re-embrace a culture of reasoned inquiry and debate. And since debate requires disagreement, higher education needs to encourage intellectual diversity in its hiring and promotion decisions with something like the fervor it shows for ethnic and racial diversity. It's the only way universities will earn back society's respect and reclaim their role at the center of public life.

Debrah said...

Very interesting Q&A.

Had no idea that anyone at Duke had covertly corresponded with KC.

Realizing that in the every day grind of the real world one must compromise to avoid negative external factors as well as negative career factors, I still could not live with myself if I were working in an environment like Duke where I could not express my opinions.

Many say that's just life; however, if I were a Duke employee and had any substantive information to add during the Lacrosse Hoax, I would have come forth unshielded by anonymity.

In all professions, most think of the pedestrian pursuits---wholly acknowledging how vital keeping a roof over your head and eating are (LIS!)---like advancement and salary before they think of the true purpose of their professions.

And having a family to support makes this type of situation even more precarious.

I often wonder if KC were married with a family would he have taken on this case along with other issues he has taken on previously in his career.

I believe that he would have.

There are still some people who will risk all for what's right.

Anonymous said...

To Miramar

I can explain why the alcohol statistics were stacked against the lacrosse team. The answer is very simple. The most targetted neighborhood-Gottlieb's beat-is Trinity East where there are the houses now owned by Duke rented by Duke students and passed down year after year. The lacrosse players rented three houses in this neighborhood and they passed them on to rising Senior lacrosse players. They were the only groups of athletes who lived in Trinity East. The other houses were rented by variopus Duke students and actually these houses had many more alcohol violations than the lacrosse houses. But because there were no other team houses in this targetted neighborhood, the lacrosse players had a greater # of alcohol violations than other teams ONLY because they lived in this neighborhood. Trinity East is right off East Campus where the Freshmen live so the houses in these neighborhoods draw Freshmen which further increases alcohol violation statistics.

Anonymous said...

I have no idea whether other parents think this way, but the Duke case, and the fact that schools such as Cornell and Vanderbilt have hired some of the more rabid G88ers, has had a huge effect on the list of schools we are letting our daughter consider. We have also come to understand that picking a college is just the first step; we will also need to pay careful attention to course and professor selection. Less fun for our daughter, perhaps, but if it saves her from spending four years (or even a semester) with a target painted on her back, it's worth it.

Ralph Phelan said...

Texas Mom said...
The endowments of elite institutions are so huge and the money from the government is so readily available that the institutions need not be accountable.

As voters, the second factor is something that we can influence.

Debrah said...

TO RRH--

IMO, it's not only politics that makes Durham so ripe for this kind of hoax.

Durham is just plain corrupt.

Corruption so obvious, distinct, and clear that it has become acceptable, apparently, to those who live there.

Chapel Hill is only ten miles away and is more Liberal than Durham in the true sense of the word.

Raleigh, which rounds out the Triangle, if you will indulge a round allusion alongside a triangle, is a place with a multitude of lifestyles like Durham, yet it is not a corrupt place and is not known for sleaze.

To be fair, Chapel Hill does not have many of the challenges of Raleigh and Durham because it is basically a quaint college town--(similar to Georgetown and areas of San Francisco on a smaller scale)--built around the university (UNC-CH)....although it is growing far too rapidly now and might lose some of this flavor.

Almost every city in the U. S. with a large and powerful black community has a reputation and a factual record of corruption.

This cannot be ignored.

The reason is because all rational rules of procedure are most often thrown out the window in favor of race-based methods.

This is a recipe for disaster and is a carbon copy of the mentality of Duke's Gang of 88.

Durham is basically run for black people and by black people......however, they fully expect a bottomless well of taxpayer cash delivered each time it is desired.

When you have people who live, profess, and teach a way of life that constantly implores the world of non-black citizens to cater to them because they are owed.....

......you will have corrupt places like Atlanta, Detroit, Chicago, and Durham.

And yes......(anticipating retorts)......many places have corruption.

Indeed.

However, when you have an environment fed by race, it is virtually impossible to get rid of "leaders" and incompetent employees if they are black.

Simply because "discrimination" will be the refrain as this is used to cover the incompetence. So everything and everyone are allowed to continue just as they are.....as in Durham.

Excuses.

Smoke and mirrors.

Corruption and harm.

Durham.

Gary Packwood said...

Debrah 8:19 said...
H-S:

...DNA collected in investigation of two officers
...BY RAY GRONBERG : The Herald-Sun Dec 10, 2007
...DURHAM -- Investigators say the woman who's apparently at the center of allegations that Durham Police Department officers engaged in sexual misconduct gave them DNA evidence that could implicate two officers.
::
Several of us have been asking about this collection of DNA phenomenon by those who are trying to 'set up' others in beautiful downtown Durham.

Is this a national issue or an issue that is unique to Durham?

Who is teaching these people how to collect DNA samples?
::
GP

John said...

Disagree with one obvious implication of this statement by Debrah - "Almost every city in the U. S. with a large and powerful black community has a reputation and a factual record of corruption. This cannot be ignored."

IMO corruption is color blind.

Kevin White's Boston, Buddy Cianci's Providence, John Rowland's Waterbury, Dailey pere's Chicago, Tweed's NYC (the grandaddy of 'em all), and countless other examples prove this point irrefutably.

As Black people over the decades have moved up, entered politics, created machines, and practiced patronage, sure as shootin, they have proven to be no less free from temptation and venality than anybody else.

So we have Durham, D.A. Eddie Jordan in New Orleans, and on and on.

But Black politicians have no greater propensity for corruption than anyone else - and history proves it. Surely Debrah didn't mean to imply this, but I thought it was worth making the point to others who might misinterpret her words.

Anonymous said...

To John at 10:58: I agree with your general point that local government corruption is color blind in most cases, but in the unique racial/political environment that defines Durham, the response to it is not. The modern incarnation of Durham politics has the black powerbrokers (notably, Bill Bell, my mayor, and Steve Chalmers, my former police chief) in bed with the neo-leftist, white affluents.

For example, Diane Catotti, a Durham council member (and leading vote getter in the recent election) proactively and aggressively stymied an investigation into the Durham Police Department's (mis)handling of the Duke lacrosse investigtion (do you disagree that there was corruption afoot in the DPD's lacrosse investigation?). Such an investigation would have likely proven lethal to black politicos such as Bell, IMHO.

Her reward? Black votes...and plenty of them. This ain't New Orleans, and this ain't Chicago. This is Durham, and corruption has a most markedly racial face.

Debrah said...

TO John as he opines:

"Surely Debrah didn't mean to imply this, but I thought it was worth making the point to others who might misinterpret her words."

I'm on my way out at the moment.

Otherwise, I would love to engage you at length.

Please reread my post.

I deliberately made a huge point of saying that corruption can be found everywhere.

If you can deal with the reality of what our society has wrought since mid 20th century.....

.....you might be able to grasp that corruption is handled differently by different people for different reasons.

RACE MATTERS--to quote Cornel West.......with my on factual interpretation of that phrase.

I made myself clear.

Do I need to explain to you what happened at Duke and in Durham for the last two years?

Don't be coy.

Not at this late stage of the game.

W. R. Chambers said...

KC,

Have you, as an historian, given any thought to your dual role? How often do historians make history in two ways: 1. by creating evidence (someday DIW and UPI will be studied as historical evidence) and 2. by affecting the subject matter under study (hasn't DIW and UPI had an impact on the various issues raised since the Duke case was first reported?)?

I hope you will consider including a CD of the blog with sale of UPI.

I've enjoyed being one of your "students" and wish that you would offer another "course" online or continue this one.

Thank you.

W.R. Chambers

Anonymous said...

Dear KC
A while ago I read about Prof. Potter
on your blog. I went to her blog to see what she had written-recently and in the past-about this Duke episode.
I wrote a responsr to her which she left posted. You might be amused to read my comment and her response.
The comment was made at the end of the Home Again:Driving Dr. Radical
blog and I,m the fourth comment-from anonymous. Her response is to assume I'm a naive student who needs to come in for a chat and be instructed. It cracked me up . Sincerely.

Anonymous said...

for john at 10:58 AM,

I agree, and think that Debrah had in mind the marriage of corruption and incompetence that was absent from Daley's Chicago or Tweed's New York.

RRH

bill anderson said...

Great work, K.C. You have proven yourself to be a hero in every way. Those of us fighting in the trenches of higher education thank you for giving us more weapons and more ammunition.

Your efforts really did make a difference here.

R.R. Hamilton said...

This is a copy of a comment I posted at Duke Prof. Zimmerman's blog site. I repeat it here so that it may not go unpublished.

Prof. Zimmerman says, "But I don’t believe there are any grounds for believing that anyone on the Duke faculty knew about that particularly nasty banner when they wrote/signed the ad. I think it’s irresponsible and pointlessly divisive to suggest that they approve of the threat of castration or actual castration of the lacrosse team–if you really believe that’s an accurate impression of the 88 people who signed the ad then I’m more right about `irrational' than I thought."

I'm one of the many attorneys with too much time on their hands who have become regular members of KC's Sunshine Band. Like you, I would like to believe that no university professor would publicly (or privately!) "thank" people who waved a "CASTRATE" banner outside the house of their students.

However, in the course of this case, I have learned that one of the subject professors told a mother of one of the lacrosse players that she is "the mother of a farm animal". I learned that another of the subject professors published an article accusing students of "racism" for wanting to register to vote (presumably against the railroading DA). And I learned that another of the subject professors tried to initiate, sua sponte, a disruption of an invited speaker (David Horowitz) by having protestors "strip-off" their tops -- so as to mock the speaker's claim to "expose campus radicals".

Thus, taken together, I think we have a basis for believing that the subject professors, as a group, are capable of harboring extremely negative views of students and capable of approving extreme forms of protest. THEREFORE, I don't think I can take the word of you, Prof. Zimmerman, for the states of mind of the 88er professors. If, as you hope, none of the professors intended to endorse the "CASTRATE" banner, then let them say so. I would prefer that they say so under oath, but even an unsworn, public statement would be at least a small step towards the healing that Duke needs.

Ralph Phelan said...

John said...

IMO corruption is color blind.

Kevin White's Boston, Buddy Cianci's Providence, John Rowland's Waterbury, Dailey pere's Chicago, Tweed's NYC....


Did not have the equivalent of the NAACP branding anyone who complained about the corruption a "racist."

Did not have the Feds scared to intervene lest they be called racists.

Did not have the press scared to muckrake lest they be called racists.

Did not have the DOJ/EEOC threatening to sue them if they did not hire enough people from the same ethnic background as the ruling gang.

Did not have nearly as much money from non-resident taxpayers to throw around. They could steer city dollars to those they favored, but not welfare payments and boondoggle grants payed for by the state and federal governments.

Did not have active support from educated "elite" types like college faculty.

I do believe that the current corruption situation is worse than the historical norm, partly because of Federal programs and policies which create perverse incentives, and partly because PC makes it hard to even talk about the problem.

Don in New Orleans said...

Here is the Professor Potter comment from her blog referred to by 11:56 am.

Dear Anonymous,

Don't believe everything you read. I never said those young men raped the woman, and assertions that I did are just wrong. Furthermore, my post (which was about media representation) went up before the students were exonerated. That said, I never said they committed a crime -- only that the actions of the group (hiring strippers, drinking until they lost judgement) put members of the group in jeopardy, that something happened to the woman who made the charges, that the team had a history of drunken and violent behavior and that members of the team were collectively responsible for letting the situation get out of hand. I never made any "charges" against the indicted students - if anything, the charge I made was that as a society we are very quick to assume that privileged, white people are "innocent" and marginalized, poor, black people are lying. That one marginalized, poor black woman actually lied does not change my view of how our culture operates; that those four young men did not rape her does not change my view that they had no business bringing her there in the first place and treating her badly when she wasn't in shape to deliver the pornographic display they had paid for.

Durham in Wonderland is a very peculiar blog, and the man who writes it someone who has a long history of identifying people who disagree with him as enemies and attacking them viciously; and making himself the center of attention by claiming to be the chief authority on controversial issues. I wouldn't form opinions about me or about the past from the postings of the blog author or the reader. As a matter of fact, don't form an opinion about him from this blog either: read DIW, Google his tenure case, and see what you think, if you are interested.

The only reason I am leaving your post up and answering it -- since your comment has nothing to do with the post it is attached to and I generally do not respond to these things at the length the DIW people would like -- is, honestly, you sound like one of my students and far too nice and reasonable to be one of the DIW people. So if you ever want to talk about this phenomenon, or my role in it, I hope you come to office hours.

best, TR

Jim in San Diego said...

It catches the eye that the accuser in the Durham P.D. prostitute case is now in jail in Durham on an old warrant.

Is this deja vu all over again?

Jim Peterson

Anonymous said...

Regarding 11:32's statement that:

"...Diane Catotti, a Durham council member (and leading vote getter in the recent election) proactively and aggressively stymied an investigation into the Durham Police Department's (mis)handling of the Duke lacrosse investigtion (do you disagree that there was corruption afoot in the DPD's lacrosse investigation?). Such an investigation would have likely proven lethal to black politicos such as Bell, IMHO."


As I recall, Bill Bell was the very one who called for an independent investigation after he deemed the Baker report to be inadequate. By doing so, he initiated a process that would have put his own actions under a public microsope. I think that's pretty courageous.

Ken Duke
Durham, NC

Anonymous said...

I replied to the Claire Potter comment quoted at 1:27 pm, pointing out politely that she had in fact accused the players of the crime of physical assault by saying "it was clear" that the dancers were physically assaulted, and even if that accusation "went up before the students were exonerated" it does not explain her determined refusal to retract what she knows now to be a defamatory statement.

Of course, the comment never appeared.

If I thought that she would answer, I would ask her to explain her puzzling references to "those four young men" and ask her what she thinks they did that was "treating her badly when she wasn't in shape to deliver the pornographic display they had paid for." Aside from the fact that Mangum "wasn't in shape" to fulfill a work commitment she had taken money for because she had voluntarily impaired herself with alcohol and muscle relaxant before even arriving at the party, how exactly did the players "treat[] her badly"? Was David Evans trying to retrieve his shaving kit which she was trying to take away with her 'treating her badly'? Was not letting her into the house when she was pounding on the door trying to get back in -- back in to the house where, she would later claim, she had just been brutally raped -- was that the 'treating her badly' that Claire Potter is referring to?

Anonymous said...

Mr. Highlands' letter to the HS raises a good point. I was wondering whether Aleve's (sic) demeanor in the lacrosse case would be a deterrent to hiring outstanding coaches, especially in football, a sport that has more than its fair share of stereotypes.

Gary Packwood said...

Nah, Claire Potter, bless her heart, has been so far removed from students and the rest of the world over the last decade or so that she figured one gaggle of strippers for Dookies would light the fire of outrage in the belly of the American public.

Little did she realize that her own actions lit the fire of outrage in the belly of the American public.

Some folks are slow learners.

So it goes.
::
GP

Anonymous said...

re: part of Potter's response to Don in New Orleans "...Google [KC Johnson's] tenure case, and see what you think..."

Here's what I think:

If anything, it makes KC Johnson look extremely good, and those attempting to seep-six his tenure bid look as utterly ridiculous and contemptible as the Gang of 88 (along with their flunkies, both tenured and untenured).

John said...

Dear Debrah,

I think it's a giant layer cake of sleeze, and with plain old, color blind corruption at the bottom of it.

The tools the corrupt use (Nifong, Catotti) to gain or maintain positions are the ones that play on the biases, received ideas, and ignorance (not necessarily stupidity) of the electorates that can put them or keep them there.

It's a kind of protection racket. Every corrupt power seeker needs the specter of a boogey man from which he will protect you, if you just give him power.

It so happens that in town-gown Durham, in the context of this case, it was creating straw men who were white, privilged, snotty, and rich that rang those social and cultural bells. This is where the racial angle comes in, the second juicy layer. (Since none of it was true, the "buggering a whole community" comment from a recent post has it just right, don't you think?)

In the early years of Dixiecrat ascendancy, of course, it was the spectre of black people overrunning God-fearing white communities that led to so many real-life Babbit's. When my long-dead grandmother was a teen in Providence, RI it was the Irish believe it or not.

Blacks, whites, undocumented aliens, gays who want to marry, evolutionists - the list is long. It's the fertilizer for a lot of political ambition. Someone is always coming to get us and destroy our way of life, just look around.

And even if the demography had been different, any Nifong would still have found a boogey man he could tune to the prejudices of his audience. Nifongs as a class are that unprincipled and that desparate.

Layer 3 - the incompetence, of course.

The top-most layer -- the one with figurines of dancing tenured PC goons atop it -- are the ideologue careerists of academe who could not care less about Durham, any alleged "victim," or some twisted notion of campus tranquility.

I can't claim, of course, to know the details of the case nearly as well as you. Indeed, who could, except perhaps Prof. Johnson, Mr. Taylor, or the principals themselves?

I agree with you most of the time. But I think you've made a stretch on this narrow point that conflicts with political history.

So as to your implicit point that black municipal corruption is somehow more ubiquitous or substantially worse than any other kind, I stand my ground.

Best regards,

Anonymous said...

Ken, It's easy to ask for an investigation that you know will never occur....not so much "courage" as backroom politics (where the hell was big Bill during the lacrosse fiasco anyway?) on a run up to an election....an election, I might add, in which Bell's main opponent, Thomas Stith, criticized Bell for his soft on crime record. Nice try, Ken, but no cigar.

Anonymous said...

11:56AM

Thanks for sharing your comment exchange with Claire Potter.

Once again Professor Potter is tap dancing all over the place trying to defend herself and frankly, she's not very good at it. Someone should get one of those hooks and pull her off stage before she embarrasses herself even more.

I don't believe everything I read but anyone who is even the least bit interested can read EXACTLY what Professor Potter said. No need to paraphrase. She wrote, “… That said, I never said they committed a crime.” She also wrote in April 2006, “The dancers were, it is clear, physically if perhaps not sexually assaulted.”

Hmmm, Professor Potter, you do know that physically assaulting someone is a crime, don’t you?

Debrah said...

If I may say this one more time.

Attempting to turn the corruption we have seen in Durham into garden-variety fare on the menu of history will not play.

We all know the past and the various brands of prejudices and bigotry leveled against one group or another.

This situation is not as simplistic as some want to make it.

The people in Durham are not victims. They are victimizers. It's like a disease that is inflicted on unsuspecting people who think "equality" is enough.

In places like Durham it's a life of draining the coffers for some cosmic justice....or some perceived payback.

And when even that isn't enough, a new "cause that requires redress" will be concocted.

Again, I never said one brand of corruption was worse than another. I am "standing my" very accurate "ground" that the way with which that corruption is dealt differs greatly when certain groups bring race--as they always will--into the mix.

One has only to see how some think that Mayor Bell was "courageous" for appointing the Whichard Committee. LOL!!!

Does anyone know anything about that Committee?

One member has a relative who married Bell's daughter.

One member has a brother very close to the former police chief and who has financial reasons for not slamming the work of the DPD.

We all are familiar with Cattoti and the rest.

That Committee was a joke. It's just as well that it was rendered impotent by the civil suits.

Black municipal corruption is handled differently.

I have plenty of first-hand info that could not be published here.

John said...

Debrah

Race, race, race ...

I lived in Kevin White's Boston for almost 10 years and in Marion Barry's D.C. for another 10. I have some "curl your hair" first-hand experience in both.

Based thereon, I am more struck by the similarities between black and white municipal corruption as I am by the differences, all the latter of which strike me as surface. The instruments are different, but "the song remains the same." [Led Zeppelin, Houses of the Holy, 1973]

While I got a speeeding ticket there in the early 70s, I know nothing about Durham except what I read. So I suppose I should defer to you on the point ... but only with respect to Durham.

Since I don't agree it's a point that can be generalized, if you are right then Durham must surely be sui generis.

Regards,

(BTW, your evident passion, as always, is uplifting)

Ralph Phelan said...

I agree with Debrah that "Black municipal corruption is handled differently."

No other form of civic corruption has anything like the systematic support of the NAACP and its ilk - support that includes intimidating the press and state and federal law enforcement from pursuing corruption in the way they would if the perpetrators weren't black. This was demonstrated a few days ago, when the DOJ declined to get involved with cleaning up Durham on "states rights" grounds, despite requests from the state AG that they come in!

Mad Hatter said...

Re: Debrah, 9:43 am,

You are so right! Having lived my entire life in Chicago, I can say that your comments about the Black Collective are true.

Anonymous said...

4:24PM Not only will it play, but the big boys like Mayor Daley, Huey Long, etc are laughing down at them for being of inept. Durham is small potatoes compared to the big cities.

Anonymous said...

What a bizarre notion to compare Limbaugh and O'Reilly to the group of 88. Do you really listen to them? I really don't hear either of them quote stray or extreme authors. I hear them quote Democratic party leaders and mainstream liberal pundits. These are the same leaders that fail to ever repudiate extremists like the group of 88. A more rational comparison for the Group of 88 might be David Duke (repudiated by the Republican Party), the head of the NRA (repudiated by an Republican President), Falwell or Robertson (who atleast admitted to foolish or inappropriate comments and views) or maybe Ann Coulter (repudiated by conservative leadership). Who so far in the Democratic party or among liberal pundits have validated your views of liberal academia or the North Carolina NAACP? I heard Whoopi Goldberg make an effort but it seems to me that the leadership of the Democratic party isn't really willing to confront the group of 88 or any other liberal extremists. If Limbaugh really is like the group of 88, KC, why don't you write an expose about similar actions on his part? Probably because you would find you agree with him more than you do with the group of 88 which is still a welcome part of the Democratic party you endorse. In most elections, they're voting just like you.

mac said...

Bye Deborah; I'll be checking in at your blog from time to time! Thanks for the local insight, the important links to local news sources and other (and thanks for the occasional entertaining flame-wars!)

Bye MOO Gregory! I will miss your humor in a big way.

Bye Gary Packwood. You had a nice way of holding up a comment and - blam - would take sure aim, as if shooting skeet - (like KC would send up skeet for us to shoot at!)

Bye, Inman. You've proven that not everything from Surrey has gone to the dogs.

Bye Duke Prof. You entered into some conversations at really important times and provided some really important observations.

Bye AMAC. Good insights - (and you must have laughed when trolls confused Mac with AMAC.)

Bye, One Spook. You have a lot of talent and sincere patriotism. I enjoyed flushing out the "one of whom we do not speak" with you.

Bye Ralph Phelan. I enjoyed your views, even when I wasn't entirely on the same page.

Bye, RR Hamilton. I enjoyed your perspective, too, especially when you and Ralph would fire up a stogie.

Bye, Jamal Hussein. You provided a lot of energy, especially earlier in the blog.

Bye Bill Anderson. Your blog contributions on Lew Rockwell have been very, very astute. You've been a real blog hero.

Bye, everyone I missed. You've been good company, and you can't know how much I'll miss you!

Bye, all. Time to put away my hatchet.

Mac

Anonymous said...

Prof Zimmerman says...

I don’t know the states of mind of any other professors. I am familiar enough with a few of the 88 that I’m confident that the three cases you cite are not representative of all, and I think Johnson’s insistence on lumping the 88 together as if signing the same statement makes them interchangable is sheer demagoguery. I don’t and can’t and won’t speak for any of the 88, but I do need to explain the point I made in the email about the “castrate” banner more clearly and hope to have that posted in a day or so.

Just as a little bit of perspective, I’ll point out that #2 of the much vilified Clair Potter’s turkey list was for “students who thought an appropriate response to David Horowitz speaking on their campus was to attempt to restrict his speech by booing, throwing things, and childishly turning their backs on him.” I’m with her 100% on that.

I do appreciate you taking the time to comment.



"I don’t and can’t and won’t speak for any of the 88".

It sure sounds like you are doing exactly that. It's almost like you should complete the sentence with "I don’t and can’t and won’t speak for any of the 88, but I DID stay at a Holiday Inn last night!" :)

You make it clear that because some of the 88 have SPOKEN TO YOU, that you therefore "know" that they did not have any of the bad intent that is sometimes ascribed to them. Alas, we don't have the same privilege of hearing their "side of the case" that you have had, and we can't read their minds. But isn't that all the more reason that they should SPEAK PUBLICLY?

You criticize Johnson for "lumping the 88 together". But by not speaking out individually, haven't they lumped THEMSELVES together? (I have heard that one or two have tried to make private apologies.) Now it may be that the good among the 88ers have convinced themselves that the "forces of evil (like KC and Horowitz)" will twist any thing they say at this point -- or will say that whatever they say is "too little". But may I point out something? Since you say that you "don't know the states of minds of any other professors", and in light of the handful of cases of conduct that I raised in my earlier comment I'm sure you will not eliminate the POSSIBILITY that at least a FEW of the 88 may be at least a bit mentally disturbed. It seems to me as though the "good guys" among the 88 are more afraid that the hardliners will say they've said "too much". In fact, my understanding is that some of them have said exactly this in private communications with the players.

Let me try an analogy: Let's say that I'm an outspoken opponent of drunk driving, and someone comes to accuse one of my children (or, if we have left in loco parentis behind, one of my friends) of causing a drunk driving accident which caused serious injury. Let's say further that I react prematurely, before learning all the facts, and I make a public statement. While my statement's primary theme is about the damnable consequences of drunk driving, it clearly implies that I believe the accusation that my child or friend had gotten drunk, had driven, and caused someone serious injury. Then I learn that my child or friend had only a single drink and wasn't involved in any accident, serious or otherwise, and that the story had been made up by some crazy or extortionate person.

Now what should I do? Should I say, "Well, my statement was about drunk driving in GENERAL, not about any particular incident at all ... AND they DID have a drink and drove!" This seems to be the path of most of the 88ers. Should I instead go privately to my child or friend and apologize? This seems to be the path of a few. Should I ask my child's mother -- or a friend of my friend -- to go make excuses for me? This seems to be the path of your friends. Or should I tell my child or friend, in as public a way as I had denounced them, that I made a mistake -- yes, that what I did was wrong?

What are your friends afraid of? I submit that they are more likely afraid of the hardliners who will condemn them for "breaking ranks" (de-lumping themselves) than they are of providing any "victory" to KC and his Sunshine Band. But you have the advantage over me: I can only speculate why they can't speak; you can ask them yourself.

RRH

Debrah said...

TO Mac, Mad Hatter, Ralph, John and all--

Thank you for your comments.

I've been amazed how the lacrosse case with all its layers has brought out in unusually bold relief some of the pathologies of our world that most people always try to avoid discussing.

I want KC to continue in some way......making these minefields a part of his work. I have a special Diva clairvoyance with regard to him.

There is no way any of us will forget in what we have participated and of what we have been a part inside Wonderland.

I will miss all of you.....even the disgruntled "anony-mice" you guys talk about. LIS!

If any of you have news to share, I hope you'll leave it inside The Diva World. There are a few who stop there to chat on occasion.

Just for fun.

If I see anything newsworthy, I'll link it there.

Yesterday when KC posted the Legacies, I skimmed it and left a light comment.

I then went into another room and just started weeping uncontrollably. It even shocked the Diva!

Jim Valvano used to say that a good cry was a boost to the soul.

Well.....I'm even more soulful now.

Best wishes and holiday magic to you all.

Debrah said...

H-S:


Duke: Ex-lacrosse coach can't sue school

By John Stevenson : The Herald-Sun
jstevenson@heraldsun.com
Dec 11, 2007

DURHAM -- Former Duke University men's lacrosse coach Michael Pressler cannot pursue a lawsuit against the school because he is bound to submit his case to an arbitrator instead, Duke contended in court filings Monday.

Pressler alleges in the suit that Duke violated a confidential settlement arising from his forced resignation last year -- a resignation that came on the heels of the now-ended lacrosse sex-offense scandal.

Specifically, the lawsuit contends Duke officials made defamatory and disparaging public comments about Pressler since the March settlement.

One of those comments appeared in a New York newspaper during April, quoting Duke spokesman John Burness as saying that coaches are responsible for the behavior of their teams, and that the difference between Pressler and his successor was "night and day."

Another comment appeared in a June Associated Press article. In that story, Burness said a coaching change at Duke was essential because of controversy surrounding the sex-offense scandal.

The scandal entailed false felony accusations against three Duke players, all since exonerated.

Lawyers for Pressler, who coached at Duke from 1990 until his ouster in April 2006, could not be reached for comment Monday.

In the pending lawsuit, Pressler says his settlement with the university should be voided, allowing him to take a wrongful termination claim to a jury.

He alleges that his ouster -- officially a resignation -- was a public-relations ploy by Duke.

The case was entered in Durham County Superior Court two months ago.

But in the paperwork filed Monday, Duke said Pressler cannot sue because of a "binding arbitration agreement" that applies to all present and future claims the coach may have in connection with his separation from the university.

Under the agreement, such claims must be submitted to a decision-maker "selected from a panel of neutral arbitrators assigned and administered by the American Arbitrators Association," Duke lawyers wrote.

"The decision of the arbitrator ... is final and binding between the parties," the attorneys said.

They added that Pressler voluntarily consented to such a dispute resolution policy during his employment at Duke.

"The Dispute Resolution Policy is a valid, enforceable contract that is supported by good and valuable consideration," according to Duke's lawyers in the case. "The Dispute Resolution Policy binds both Pressler and Duke, obligating both parties to arbitrate any and all claims that arise out of Pressler's employment with Duke or the termination thereof."

As a result, state judges do not have jurisdiction over the matter, Monday's paperwork said.

The case is one of two pending lawsuits filed in connection with the lacrosse case.

The other is a federal civil-rights action, accusing former District Attorney Mike Nifong, the city, certain police officers and a Burlington DNA lab of conspiring to hide scientific evidence favorable to the three exonerated athletes: Collin Finnerty, Reade Seligmann and David Evans.

The three players already have reached a confidential settlement with Duke.

Anonymous said...

Re: 4:04's "Ken, It's easy to ask for an investigation that you know will never occur....not so much "courage" as backroom politics (where the hell was big Bill during the lacrosse fiasco anyway?)...."

How did Bell know the investigation would never occur? In fact, an investigation began, and would have proceeded but for the lawsuits. Once the civil cases are resolved, the investigation may go on, at which time the Commission that Bell created may yet ask him your question: "Where the hell were (you) during the lacrosse fiasco, anyway?"

Ken Duke
Durham, NC

Anonymous said...

Ken: 4:04 here. I hope you are correct that Bell will have to answer that question, among others, but I'm not holding my breath. Perhaps I am more cynical than you, but I don't believe for a minute that Bell would emerge from the shadows after the facts of the lacrosse case were set (by the NC attorney general) to seek a truly "independent" investigation of the DPD. Sounds good, particularly in an election year, but as we sit here today, no facts have been "independently" gathered. Thank goodness for the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and cross-examination: a little sunshine for disinfection.

Anonymous said...

[re: "Q: Why do you think they promoted Cpl. Addison?"]

Probably for the same reason Duke continues to promote the nincompoops from the Gang of 88. Durham is like Duke - one rises to the bottom and sinks to the top.

Anonymous said...

RRH - That was an exceptional analogy, as it played out honestly through all the twists and turns. Very nice!

DIVA - You're smart and strong, and you'll do just fine. Hang tough!

MAC - That thing you carry on top of your shouldes ain't no hatchet. It's a bloody battle axe!

MOO! Gregory

mac said...

MOO Gregory,

I wondered why I like Zeppelin's "No Quarter" so much...