Thursday, October 04, 2007


A reader asked me to list the apologies by the lacrosse players, in light of the disturbing Holsti letter:

1) March 24, 2006: the captains apologized to Executive Vice President Tallman Trask, AD Joe Alleva, and Associate AD Chris Kennedy.

2) March 28, 2006: the captains apologized to President Brodhead.

3) March 28, 2006: the captains apologized in a public statement, posted on the Duke website.

4) May 3, 2006: Ryan McFadyen apologized to the team and to President Brodhead for his e-mail.

5) October 15, 2006: Dave Evans apologized in his interview with Ed Bradley, 60 Minutes.

Despite the claims of Prof. Holsti, it would be hard to imagine a spring break party whose organizers have apologized more often.


Anonymous said...

Prof. Johnson--

Thank you! This is roughly what I remembered, and should help clear up some things.


Debrah said...

"Despite the claims of Prof. Holsti, it would be hard to imagine a spring break party whose organizers have apologized more often."

You can say that again!

Some professors at Duke want blood. They are confused they continue to make sense of the fact that so many among them---serving as colleagues and friends---are the Gritty Gang of 88.

With the behavior of the Gang becoming national and international news......pieces of themselves have also been diminished.

It's unsettling to see how some professors are handling this reality.

Would you want YOUR son or daughter to be educated by such people?

People who attack young students? On and on and on?

Anonymous said...

Public statement on the Duke website.

60 minutes.

Other miscellaneous apologies.

I suppose they could have taken out a full page ad in the NYT (but would they have gotten the nice discount that got?)

How about a 30 second apology during the Super Bowl?

Anonymous said...

So the players did apologize, several times...but what if they hadn't? Isn't it astonishing that Holsti thought he had noticed such a great, telling omission that he should write a public letter about it? Eureka - the players' parents should apologize!

I mean, how stupid is that? Surely that doesn't rise to the level of an idea, even at Duke.

Just about the only thing left to watch for is how Duke can possibly make itself look more idiotic. If I may, Duke profs, here's a little hint: when you're overcome with the urge to make these weird remarks, when you've just got to get out there and mangle reality, try to keep the nonsense so broad that it can't easily be proven wrong. Don't claim anything concrete, okay? You really do not have a good track record with that.

Instead, try something like "Yao Ming is the most serious threat to American Empire", stuff along those lines. That way it's off your chest, and sure, you'll sound like asses, but nobody will be able to prove it.

Anonymous said...

The 88ers and their like won't let the facts confuse them!

Anonymous said...

Over the years, Duke has played the ratings game, an effort to placate its craven Ivy wannabe desires. By polishing a carefully crafted image, Duke has crept up the US News chart, now somewhere in or near the top 10. The underlying cultural and moral rot that permeates Duke (not to mention the academic mediocrity among its faculty) has been so thoroughly revealed over these past 18 months, as much by those inside Duke as outsiders. It should certainly make us all reconsider just what it is we call an "elite" university; after all, Duke itself is nothing more than "elitist".

Anonymous said...

ss: You can't clear anything up for people who CHOOSE to "see through a glass darkly".

It's not a matter of facts; It's not a matter of truth; It's a matter of agenda, and these folks have no interest in hearing anything that does not support their agenda.

Having been involved in the religious world most of my life, I am not surprised that people prefer their own paths, even if the end results in pain for them.

However, having been at Duke during an era ( 70's) when the search for truth and integrity were paramount, I am having a rude awakening with this case.

Very rude.

Very sad.

The book was right; It is NOT about the truth.

So, what do you suppose it is about, this monumental struggle to unveil the lies, promote responsibility, and sustain cultural values that are essential to a lawful society?

I am less hopeful today than I was before I became more enlightened about the pervasive indoctrination that is being foisted upon our kids in the universities.

We are literally paying big bucks to have our kids brainwashed by the PC crowd whose avowed purpose it is to destroy the roots of American moral fiber.

Anonymous said...

I think that the LAX players could have put their apologies on a billboard, and hired a skywriter, but people like Holsti would not care. These are people who don't like to be confused by facts.

Meanwhile, these young men were falsely accused on campus by faculty members, students, administrators, and employees of Duke University, but we still have to listen to the "they didn't apologize enough times" bullcrap. I have come to the conclusion that many professors in the arts and sciences at Duke University simply are beyond having any sense of shame at all. Neither do they have a sense of honor.

I guess that since honor means nothing to them, the fact that NO lacrosse player had been charged with an honor offense meant nothing. After all, some of the players who were under 21 DRANK BEER, which apparently has become a Crime Against Humanity.

Oh, and to the Chronicle poster who asked if K.C. had cut me on on the book deal, yeah, right. In your and my dreams, pal.

Anonymous said...

Thanks K.C. - as usual, good show.

BTW, congrats on the HBO deal. You and Stuart deserve the accolades, not to mention the $$. I bet it's making folks like Lubiano, Holloway, Starn, thugniggaintellectual, et al., sh*t bricks knowing that you did more with one book (and blog) than they have done - and probably ever will do - in their entire careers.

As for Holsti, may I suggest a nice dry white wine to go with roasted crow?...

Debrah said...


Have a look at this paragraph from the tiny little Wiki on Starn.

In fact, going after KC and this blog make up half the space of information on little Orin:

Starn wrote four op-eds in North Carolina newspapers about the 2006 Duke University lacrosse case. In a September 15, 2006 column, Starn criticized Mike Krzyzewski, saying the Duke coach "stubbornly refused to learn the lessons of these last months. An arrogant sense of victimization and entitlement seems to have replaced any semblance of clear-thinking or self-reflection in Duke sports circles." Starn has cited the incident in his criticism of Duke's participation in Division I athletics. Furthermore, he has attacked bloggers such as K.C. Johnson who are skeptical about the prosecution's account, calling them "strident, self-righteous". Although Starn himself has repeatedly criticized prosecutor Mike Nifong, Starn mocked Johnson's readers as people who think Nifong is "one of world history's most evil men."


Debrah said...

Forget about apologies.

At this point of this saga, they are insignificant.

The men on the lacrosse team apologized quickly and repeatedly right from the start for their minor faux pas.

All the adults and the people in charge of the Duke asylum waited...and waited......until that pathetically thin and vapid--and most certainly forced--utterance from Brodhead last week.

At this point, it's too late to apologize.

It's time for a body count.......and a clearing away of the ashes.

Anonymous said...

Trinity '85 says:

Holsti and Starn's misconduct underscores why the remaining lax players should NOT settle with Duke. Radical faculty are merely biding their time until they can strike again, and every one of those players (as well as their successors) are vulnerable to this sorry lot. Lord knows how many faculty are merely waiting for their opportunity to pounce. While the indicted players could settle for money because they were no longer at Duke (and therefore beyond the reach of the faculty hooligans), the remaining players are still very much at risk.

Holsti and Starn seriously increased the risk of a public lawsuit. What a couple of dingbats.

Anonymous said...

I second the congrats to KC for the HBO movie deal! For those of you who haven't seen it:


Now, who should play who in this production? A pity that Peter Lorre is long gone -- methinks he would have been perfect for Broadhead . . . .

LKB in Houston

Anonymous said...

Yes, but remembering ". . . it's not about the truth," it is not about an "apology" either. These kids were "raped" all the way around. They are people without a voice . . . everything about them has been put through a clouded lexicon of a left and an exteme left of center propaganda machine for want of a better term by people who should have known better, who should have been mature in their own behavior and concerns, and yet, it was these put upon young men who stood up to the insanity that became the Duke lacrosse hoax, and yes, they did make their apology. The smallness of character of the people who find fault with the lacrosse team is marked by their own behavior and a lack of any apology for it.

Anonymous said...

JLS says....,

If various members of Duke's faculty were as smart as they think they are or maybe just a little bit smart than Linwood Wilson, they would know when to shut up. But Holsti's letter is the "Linwood Wilson challenging Joeseph Cheshire on the Durham Court House steps" moment for the Duke faculty. Holsti has succeeded in making the Duke faculty look as bad as Wilson make the Durham DA's office look. I hope he is proud of this accomplishment.

Anonymous said...

KC, HBO will make you look foolish!Can't believe you did it.

Anonymous said...

It is possible this latest attack could get Duke students and alums truly outraged. Holsti attacked their mothers!

The fact that a significant number of faculty members actually despise a significant number of the members of the Duke family didn't do it. This might.

Thomas Sowell once wrote, "Harvard turns out bright students because Harvard takes in bright students-and usually does not ruin them during the four years in between."

If Duke keeps discrediting the Duke name they may eventually not be taking in bright students because in spite of what Holsti believes, they have bright parents.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps Mr. Holsti knows what he's doing. The game plan could be to divert attention away from the corrupt Durham police/the frame/the 88 professors and Brodhead's weak "apology." Focus attention on the behavior of the players and blame their parents. His uninformed point of view has now been exposed. Unless he apologizes immediately, his failure to do so will constitute evidence of malice on his part.

Gary Packwood said...

Debrah 9:35 said...
...Have a look at this paragraph from the tiny little Wiki on Starn.
...In fact, going after KC and this blog make up half the space of information on little Orin:
...Starn wrote four op-eds in North Carolina newspapers about the 2006 Duke University lacrosse case. In a September 15, 2006 column, Starn criticized Mike Krzyzewski, saying the Duke coach "stubbornly refused to learn the lessons of these last months. An arrogant sense of victimization and entitlement seems to have replaced any semblance of clear-thinking or self-reflection in Duke sports circles." Starn has cited the incident in his criticism of Duke's participation in Division I athletics. Furthermore, he has attacked bloggers such as K.C. Johnson who are skeptical about the prosecution's account, calling them "strident, self-righteous". Although Starn himself has repeatedly criticized prosecutor Mike Nifong, Starn mocked Johnson's readers as people who think Nifong is "one of world history's most evil men."
Starn and several others at Duke wanted to be the next Gandhi or MLK or perhaps the new and improved Nelson Mandela.

Starn's dream of universities without athletes has crumbled somewhat yet he still does not understand that the people are not going to elevate a university professor to the level of Mandela.

A little jail time might be helpful.

Anonymous said...

Remember, they are the victims. By stating and/or believing there was no apology, they are victims. Stating/believing that Brodhead went above and beyond in his apology (that was wierd to even write considering it is crazy) Broadhead is a victim, duke is a victim... just not the true victims. It is truely sad.

Anonymous said...

When the players apologized to brodhead they in fact apologized to ALL of Duke. It was brodheads responsibilty to let the Duke community know that these guys apologized. This is another example of brodheads failure to the lacrosse players, pressler, the team AND Duke University.

However, if in fact he (brodhead) had the apology published in the chronicle or on the Duke website then he did the right thing and all those who are looking for the public apology by the guys are looking in the wrong place for the wrong reasons. It is and always will be brodheads responsibility to make sure that any offense, real or perceived, that is apologized for, to the president of Duke University becomes a public apology to the Duke community, Another fumble bumble by the nonleader

AMac said...

Debrah 9:35pm --

John-in-Carolina wrote today about Prof. Starn's representation of Coach Krzyzewski's take on the Lacrosse Case in his post Starn's Distortion & Duke's Standards.

Anonymous said...


Re: Prof Holsti

He is an embarrassment to himself, to his family and to his profession.

A complete buffoon.


Anonymous said...

Has that girl who went to the fraternity party (was it Nartley's frat?) apologized yet? Sure, she was raped, but she was no choirgirl -- going to a party where underaged drinking, drugs, and weapons were found.

AMac said...

Re: Ryan McFadyen --

In addition to the May 3, 2006 apology that KC references, here is an excerpt from the email from McFadyen that Bill Anderson posted in the comments of D-i-W:

--- begin excerpt ---

It must be understood, however, that my email was written wholeheartedly in jest and in no way did my teammates or I intend to act on the references I made. Further is was a private email send to my closest of friends all of whom understood the reference and immediately passed it off as a joke. After a night where, as you said, a number of us felt “ripped off,” I wrote my email not out of anger for what had happened but instead to break the tension that arose from the now-infamous party. Had I known then how the following weeks would unfold, my e-mail would have been drastically different. Hindsight is indeed 20/20 and, in this case, rife with sincere compunction.

I understand the assumptions that can be made from reading what I wrote and again, I regret ever writing such an ill-thought and immature joke. I apologize sincerely for the anguish this may have caused and stress that I never meant for such things to happen.


Ultimately, the shame I have brought upon myself and the indignity I have brought upon my family, friends, The Delbarton School and Duke University overshadows the wrongs of those against me. I regret the consequences that have stemmed from my actions and accept full responsibility for what I did.

--- end excerpt ---

Note that this team member apologized for telling a crude joke, to friends, all of whom got the references to "American Psycho," as the text is widely taught at Duke. This communication only came to the public's attention when it was broadcast by law enforcement as part of a campaign to demonize the players and extract a confession.

A teenager making up a lousy falls-flat joke and foolishly sharing it with friends. Who knew?

And yet the issue for some is that McFadyen and teammates in analogous situations haven't apologized enough.

Anonymous said...

This last is truly scary.

It shows there are still professors who either haven't bothered to research the facts, yet feel compelled to sound off, or, who think somehow if they make statements in contravention of the facts, it helps some worthwhile cause. Either way, it is deeply disturbing.

Combined with the posted report earlier today that some professors are apparently displacing anger onto the players (or perhaps even students more generally), this shows a lack of maturity, judgment, and good sense that is so far beyond anything any player did that it utterly disgusts.

Anonymous said...

Rather than outrage at Holsti's comments, I feel sadness. I didn't know Holsti when I was at Duke, but I just reviewed his faculty profile. By any objective standard, his body of work is simply amazing. He seems to be precisely the type of serious, prestigious scholar that critics of the 88 want associated with Duke and its aspirations to academic excellence. I winced as I read his letter again after reviewing his CV. I want to believe that there is something more to this story than is apparent from his "ill-judged and divisive" (to borrow a phrase) letter. What troubles me most is that a man of his great intellect would so carelessly fail to investigate the factual basis for his assertions in a public letter criticizing students at his own institution. Professor Holsti, is there more to this story? If not, then will you apologize to the lacrosse players?

Anonymous said...

In making a fetish of demanding apologies from the lacrosse players, Professor Holsti and his compadres (e.g, the fellow who calls himself "Shakespeare" on the Chronicle's website) give fresh meaning to that hoary admonition, "Why strain at the gnat when you've already swallowed the camel?"

Professor Holsti's bumbling also makes it more difficult to pretend that retired professors invariably credit more traditional understandings of the point of a liberal education. A sound instance of such an understanding was provided by John Alexander Smith, Waynflete Professor of Philosophy at Oxford, addressing his students in 1914 (from The Rape of the Masters, by Roger Kimball):

"Gentlemen, you are now about to embark upon a course of studies which will occupy you for two years. Together, they form a noble adventure. But I should like to remind you of an important point. Some of you, when you go down from the University, will go into the Church, or to the Bar, or to the House of Commons, or to the Home Civil Service, or the Indian or Colonial Services, or into various professions. Some may go into the Army, some into industry and commerce; some may become country gentlemen. A few--I hope a very few--will become teachers or dons. Let me make this clear to you. Except for those in the last category, nothing that you will learn in the course of your studies will be of the slightest possible use to you in after life--save only this--if you work hard and intelligently you should be able to detect when a man is talking rot, and that, in my view, is the main, if not the sole, purpose of education."

I fear that Professor Holsti's rot detector retired when he did. I presume, of course, that its needle did occasionally move off zero before he ascended into Cloud EmeritusLand.

Anonymous said...

Prof. Holsti has done something nobody else has ever thought of doing:
Demand an apology for a party.
Of all the parties in the world, he had to get worked up over this one.
To give him credit, he got the folks arguing on his terms--where is the apology and is it sufficient--instead of saying his terms were absurd.

He apparently had no hobbies when he retired.
He's either going to start objecting to parties on at least a weekly basis, demanding apologies, to demonstrate his intellectual consistency, or let this one go as his magnum opus and demonstrate he's a whackjob.

Anonymous said...

Come now people, the LAX parent DO owe an apology. It should be delivered and probably already has been multiple times. The apology they owe is to their sons--for sending them to the cesspool that is Duke.
It wasn't enough to send their sons to a university so wrapped in political correctness that they had no clue about the welfare of their students. It wasn't enough to send their sons to a so-called school with a phallas complex, an obsession with race, and a desire to ram sexuality down the throats of others.
Come now parents, hit your knees and say you're sorry for putting your sons in danger--and subjecting them to less than honorable professors, an AD looking to catapult them to the wolves, a dean who was playing Shaft with them, and a plethora of alleged professors who have yet to apologize for the most egregious of sins.
Welcome to Duhmb--city of medicine, prosecutorial misconduct, and home of the World's Most Dishonest Police Department. Pony up to the bar guys, they're getting your money ready--admission or not. You're due for the big bucks.

Unknown said...

"The lowness of him was beneath all that had so far yet been sunk to."
--Finnegans Wake

And that wasn't easy.

Anonymous said...

It has been observed that some of the worst anti-male sexists are older men. They grew up in a pre-feminist era and as a result still have a strong sense of protectiveness towards females. Therefore, their relexive reaction to any male/female contest is to bash the male. Also, they are prone to react with truly toxic levels of jealosy when presented with evidence that younger men might be frolicing with younger women. So, the impulse to punish guys is hard for them to resist and, in many cases, is so strong they are barely conscious of how much it is driving their responses.
I give up M. Nifong, R. Brodhead, and this guy.

Debrah said...

TO 10:25 PM--

I took a look. John did a good job of illustrating the kind of rodent Orin Starn is.

Hopefully, the editors at the N&O will be more thorough when dealing with him in the future; however, Mr. Torrey, who is responsible for choosing the op-ed columns they print, has a similar personality as Starn.

It's hell dealing with those people, but they have evolved and have covered this case so much better than the H-S.

The N&O editorial page is still lagging. They almost never comment on anything concerning this case unless it's an issue that just slaps them in the face and they have to comment.

Starn is a little acne-scarred creep with a degree or two that, no doubt, impresses Torrey. Some locals think that a professor at Duke must be top shelf.

It goes without saying that this case and its residue have changed a lot of minds on that score.

Orin Starn and men like him just need someone--(like Coach K...LOL!)--to meet them in a dark alley somewhere and beat them to a pulp.

He's a very destructive and petty person who should not be teaching at an elite university.

Michael said...

re: 11:20

Perhaps these guys have forgotten what it was like when they were going to college and the struggles and challenges that they faced. And the work and effort that parents have put in for two decades to raise their kids. I don't know if this guy has raised kids or not but it is a massive amount of work and trashing parents with kids of accomplishment that are paying your salary is illogical.

He should be greeted by a security guard in the morning and handed a cardboard box.

mac said...

No apologies have been rendered by:

Mike Nifong (not real ones, anyway)
Most of the 88
Tara Levity
Judge Stephens
The NY Times and their "reporters."
MSM and Nancy Grace and Wendy Murphy

I'm sure there are other non-apologists, like the Catholic Priest who serves Duke and many, many others.

How many apologies do the students have to make? How many sincere apologies (or apologies of any kind) have these others made?

Anonymous said...

With a movie out there Duke will be forced to shitcan most of the ignoble fools. Afterall there will be an endcrawl of the "where are they now variety". Plus it will probaby say
"'nifong was indicted in Dec 2007 on civil rights charges. He is awaiting trial"

Anonymous said...

"'nifong was indicted in Dec 2007 on civil rights charges. He is awaiting trial."

I'm betting on "Nifong was elected to the North Carolina House Of Representatives in November, 2008. He currently serves on the judiciary committee."

One Spook said...

This excellent article on the Duke Case in the Chronicle of Higher Education, written by one of our fellow commentors who posts here as "michael," is well worth the read:

Stereotype, Then and Now

Give it a look!

One Spook

Anonymous said...

Ryan McFadyen also wrote an apology letter that was posted on the Liestoppers Forum and Johnsville News. He has also sent personal apology notes to various clergy/teachers/coaches at The Delbarton School, Presslers, his church, close friends and family and verbally to his entire team and to Richard Broadhead pesonally. Ok Professor...enough?
Get it? They ARE sorry. The entire team of 2006 is sorry. ALL of them!!

Anonymous said...

Don't forget, RRH is having his parents send a letter of apology in, also.


Anonymous said...

10:01 PM said --

"KC, HBO will make you look foolish!Can't believe you did it."

Oh, someone looks foolish around here. But it's not KC.

Stuart McGeady said...

To Mac...

Possible non-apologist you astutely recalled is Fr. Joe Vetter, who I have met several times over the years when I have visited Duke. Real good guy, concerned with students, but who really disappointed me with his rush to judgment during homilies at mass (videotapes on the web at Duke Chapel's website, I think).

I will make a point to inquire to see if he has amended or corrected or apologized for what he said last year. He might have, I'm not sure.

Stuart McGeady said...

Ditto for Dean Wells. He has a big pulpit in the chapel. I'll do some research to see how he's been using it.

Anonymous said...

Thanks Professor Johnson. The student's apologies struck me as sincere, if not particularly polished. As I would expect, coming from people under a great deal of stress. But they took full responsibility for their actions, and apologized immediately upon being asked to do so.

After listening to Marion Jones, I find myself even less impressed with President Broadhead's apology. Powerful it is not. Nixonian is the word I would use to describe President Broadhead's apology, which was very much a vapid "mistakes were made" sort of speech, given to a law conference, and directed to no one in particular. President Broadhead may be sorry that he has caused Duke any discomfort, and he would like to put the whole unhappy episode behind us.

Unlike Ms. Jones, I got no feeling that Mr. Broadhead was sincerely sorry for anything except the inconvenience caused by the people who won't stop asking questions. I certainly got no sense of shame, remorse, or understanding of the depth of what Duke's faculty and administration did that was wrong, just that they made some mistakes, and a few members of the faculty spoke a few ill-chosen words. Apparently lynch mob behavior is not a problem if 88 members of the faculty are the mob. What is Dr. Broadhead's threshold? A hundred? Railroading innocent people apparently is not a problem to Dr. Broadhead if they are not members of protected classes favored by the faculty.

Marion Jones was direct and to the point - she apologized for hurting her family, her fans, and the people who had believed in her. She said in so many words that the hurt was caused by her own actions. No mincing words. Sorry Dr. Broadhead, but you are not Shakespearean here, you are pathetically Nixonian. Now Ms. Jones, on the other hand, truly gave a powerful apology.

The letter from the two members of the Coleman Committee in the October 5 Duke Chronicle was disappointing. Professor Coleman has done good work in the past. I will try to think charitably of him, presuming that he is motivated by a sincere love of Duke, and a hope to see the university saved from further strife. I find the notion of man with a Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering overlooking the vast array of data attesting to the outrageous behavior of the G-88 and members of the Duke administration much more puzzling and disturbing. How much data does he think is needed to be concerned about the situation? I do not think their letter is any more convincing that President Broadhead's apology. What Duke really needs is a complete airing of the problems, and accountability. That means sanctions against G-88 members who violated the faculty conduct code, including their actions such as approving the publication of the "Wanted" poster as an official university statement without obtaining permission, and use of university funds to pay for it. Duke needs a lot more sunshine before it begins to heal. Too many people have good reason to suspect that the settlements with the families swept a lot of truly immoral or illegal actions under the rug. Professor Coleman's letter in the Duke Chronicle does not lessen that concern.