This morning’s Herald-Sun features a letter of apology from Duke Earth Systems Science professor Thomas Crowley. Entitled “Lacrosse Retraction,” the letter states:
On Nov. 13, The Herald-Sun published an “Other Voices” piece by me concerning the Duke lacrosse case. I have subsequently been informed of errors in that letter. In particular my blanket statement about behavior of the lacrosse team was neither fair in general nor applicable to the particular case now in dispute. I apologize for this and any other errors.
The “other errors,” it’s worth reiterating, were
- “defense lawyers continue to make inappropriate public comments about the accuser to the point of blackening her name to the potential jurors”;
- “one of the accused had been previously arrested for anti-gay comments”;
- “was [the accuser] possibly drugged by someone when they encouraged her to have a drink?”
In a subsequent e-mail to me,
It’s worth wondering, however, how and why the Herald-Sun could publish an op-ed filled with so many errors that its author—to his credit, when the errors were pointed out—had to retract it himself. Newspapers are supposed to fact-check op-eds before they appear.
It appears, alas, that the Herald-Sun’s prejudice against the players runs so deep that the paper cannot stand down from an anti-lacrosse screed that even its author has repudiated.