Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Duke Talk

For those interested, I'll be speaking as part of a panel discussion on the case this Thursday night, sponsored by ACLU@DUKE. The talk is at 7pm, in the Von Canon Center (lower level of the Bryan
Center on Duke's West Campus) . The panel also includes Stephen Miller, whose columns and public appearances helped crystallize Duke student opinion on the case.


Anonymous said...

From Talk Left:
NEWS!! Duke Official: "Considerable Support" Offered to LAX Players
« on: Today at 02:47:49 PM »

A Duke parent (not associated with the lacrosse team) sent an e-mail to President Brodhead questioning why the indicted players had not received more support from Duke University. The parent received the following message back from a Duke official:

"President Brodhead asked me to respond to your email to him about our support for the students and alumnus charged in the case. Let me assure you that we're in regular contact with them and their families and offering considerable support. As you know, for the reasons articulated by the president on numerous occasions, Duke cannot pre-judge the outcome of the case regardless of media accounts."

"We all hopes this ends soon."

Anonymous said...

Believe me, that response comes out of the back end of a bull. The lacrosse parents with whom I speak tell me that Brodhead completely abandoned them to the tender mercies of the Gang of 88 and others.

With a little bit of backbone, Brodhead could have stood up to the Gang of 88 and others, and he could have let Nifong and the Durham police know that they were expected to follow the law. Instead, he encouraged the faculty, Nifong, and the police to use the lacrosse players and their families as pinatas.

William L. Anderson

Anonymous said...

I agree with Dr. Anderson on where that response comes from. What exactly is that "considerable support?" I see no evidence of it whatsoever. When Duke student was arrested in Armenia, Brodhead wrote to the President of Armenia and ask for that student not to be put on trial. Now, that's considerable support. Did Brodhead do anything of the sort for Duke Lacrosse players?
No, after two were indicted, Brodhead said that "...whatever they did is bad enough."

Anonymous said...

We all hopeS this ends soon.
Who wrote that e-mail again?

kcjohnson9 said...

Agree with the 9.06: I haven't seen the original of this email; and assume it actually wasn't sent from Brodhead's office.

Anonymous said...

KC where can I find information on Mike Nifong’s other cases? Do you know of any instances other then this Duke case where he has violated procedural or ethical guidelines?

Anonymous said...

Will be at the Bryan Center with bells on.

DukeGradNCResident said...

It would be outstanding if Steven Baldwin could join you on the dais!

kcjohnson9 said...

Allow me to correct my earlier post--I just heard from a reliable source that the email is, in fact, genuine.

I suppose we're in a Clintonian moment, where it depends on what the definition of "regular contact" is; or the definition of "considerable support" is.

It appears that Pres. Brodhead defines those terms differently than most Americans.

Anonymous said...

The body of e-mail appears to be real.
We all hopes it ends soon-that got to be not from the e-mail itself.

Anonymous said...

Dear Dr. Johnson,
You may know that this weekend (starting the October 27th) is Duke Parents weekend. We have been invited to a reception with President Brodhead on Friday night, and my husband and I would love to have you as our guest!

Judith Beaumont
BS Duke '74 MHA Duke '78 and the mother of two Duke students

Anonymous said...

In addition to everything else it now appears that President Brodhead and his administration are resorting to lying to cover up the huge mess they created. What a pity! What’s interesting about this is the fact that they are now crossing into new territory. When you lie about such trivial things, you are bound to get caught. I am sure they will realize before too long, that this lie was huge mistake – much bigger than the original sin of not providing any support (on the contrary, doing some awful backstabbing).

Here is a challenge to President Brodhead or for any of the members of his administration. Can they list the contacts they have had with the lax families? The letters, notes written? The telephone calls made? The flowers sent? Any contact what so-ever? Show us your list President Brodhead. We will be waiting for it most anxiously. Remember another Duke alum’s downfall for lying – Nixon? Your nose is beginning to grow too just like his did after his fantastic lies.

My guess is Brodhead probably provided support to the lax families in his dreams and when he woke up, he got all mixed up. Darn thing those dreams! Sometimes it is so easy to mix them up as the real thing!

anonymous said...

Having talked to several adminstration officials over the past 6 months, my guess is that the duke official who wrote that email is Larry Moneta. I also think that duke considers receiving a phone call from a family of one of the students as part of their regular contact. If you asked duke how many contacts have been initiated by the administration, it would be close to zero!

Anonymous said...

Brodhead would not return calls to any of the parents of the LAX team. After the indictments he did not return or take calls from the parents of the indicted players. Professor Wood actually hung up on one of the parents when he tried to explain away his slanderous remarks about one of the players. When he was pressed to correct his statements he hung up. So much for support.

Anonymous said...

That e-mail might be real, but what it says is not. This is what was posted on Talk Left by FODU spokesperson.

I have been monitoring this board since the very beginning. I have never posted simply because I cannot check it consistently enough to keep up with the fast pace of discussions. I am posting here for the first time because the assertion made by Brodhead’s assistant that the Duke administration has been “in regular contact with them and their families and offering considerable support” is so absolutely outrageous that I believe you should know the facts.

Brodhead and the rest of the administration have had no contact with any of the lacrosse players or their families whatsoever with the following three exceptions:

1. Brodhead talked to Devon Sherwood’s family and apologized for what they were going through. Devon is African American.

2. One of the families of a player who was not charged ran into Brodhead at a reception following the dedication of a facility at Duke Medical Center. Brodhead was very cold and uncaring toward them. One of the trustees joined them and was supportive of the lacrosse players. The trustee asked them how to get lacrosse wristbands and he indicated he wanted to get enough for a lacrosse team at the university where he teaches. As Brodhead watched silently, the family members gave him one of their own wristbands, and he put it on immediately. At this point, apparently, Brodhead walked away.

3. Colin Finnerty’s parents contacted Brodhead to ask for permission to transfer credits from other colleges. Both Colin and Reade Seligmann are taking classes this semester at colleges near their homes. However, Duke will not let them transfer more than two courses so they are unable to keep up with their studies while suspended unless they get permission to transfer more. Colin was supposed to do study abroad this semester, but Duke cancelled that. Brodhead refused to meet with them despite several requests. Finally, the person in charge of the annual giving program told Brodhead that, unless he agreed to see the Finnerties, he would resign. Only then did Brodhead agree to meet them. In the meeting, Brodhead remained intransigent and he and Mrs. Finnerty got into terrible argument. The Finnerties walked out because Brodhead started insulting them.

There has not been a single note, card or other expression of kindness from anyone in the Duke administration to any of the three accused students.

By contrast, I received an e-mail from someone close to Reade Seligmann who told me that, the same day Duke suspended Reade, an Ivy League athletic department official called him to tell him how much they believed in him and wanted him to come to their university and play lacrosse. The people there had recruited him out of high school, two years prior, remembered what a great person he was. They that much confidence in him.

Jason Trumpbour
Friends of Duke University

Anonymous said...

I reposted the above from this link.

Anonymous said...

Jason, re yours: Wow. Particularly #3, wow.

Anonymous said...

Jason, #2 and #3 in your post are great examples of biased accounts of events provided by LAX team parents for the purpose of inciting others to gang up on Brodhead. Obviously, the information in #3 comes from the Finnerties unless you want to tell us that there was some unbiased observer in the room who provided the information. So we have the Finnerties providing you with a version of events in which, guess what, Brodhead is the bad guy. As I understand it from your post, the Finnerties walked out of the room because Brodhead insulted them. I assume that the terrible argument referenced in your post was also entirely the fault of Brodhead and that the Finnerties were a model of decorum during this meeting and said nothing that could be contrued as insulting to Brodhead in any way. Would that be correct? By the way, what exactly was the insult that Brodhead supposedly leveled at them? Did he say something that was slightly critical of Colin and the other LAX players, who as we all know from the many articles and posts on this web site had absolutely nothing to do with creating this mess?

Anonymous said...

9:58 AM, you say that Peter Wood actually hung up on one of the LAX team parents. Gee, he must be a really terrible guy. Or could there possibly be some other explanation, such as maybe the LAX team parent was screaming and swearing at him? Do you think there is any possibility that the LAX team parent who was providing you with your information might have omitted minor details like that?

Anonymous said...

As I understand it, Finnerty and Seligmann are taking classes at community colleges near their homes. While I think this is admirable and shows some real strength and character on their parts, why would Duke, one of the top universities in the country, allow someone to transfer more than two credits from a community college and then issue a Duke degree based on those credits?

DukeEgr93 said...

4:22 anon - what I would like to see is a policy in play that if a student is provisionally suspended (say, in cases of indictment) but those provisions end up being false (acquittal or dropped charges, for example) that any classes the students take elsewhere should transfer in as not to cause the students to have to change their graduation schedule based on a *provisional*, but ultimately unwarranted, suspension. At the very least Duke apparently worked with the two current students such that the Spring semester was not an academic loss.

Anonymous said...

This case is an absolute crock. These young men's lives are on standby while this Nifong gets enough testosterone to admit he has nothing. It's amazing that accusers to create so much hostility and never be held accountable... Screw you too Sharpton & Jesse. Neither of you have over a hundred words to your vocabulary.