Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Responses to media

Listed below are selected articles that appeared in the media and either contained false information or biased content on the Duke Lacrosse case. We urge you to respond to these articles and share your responses with us. To share your responses, post them in the comments section under this page. Be sure to identify, on the top, which article you are responding to. The articles are listed by date, in descending order.

24. In the aftermath of a social disaster January 5, Herald Sun by Cathy Davidson (Professor at Duke University).


23. Official, but not over December 11, The Duke Chronicle by Shadee Malaklou


22. Secret racism underlying lacrosse case October 29, Herald Sun by Grant Farred (Associate Professor of Literature at Duke University).


21. Files From Duke Rape Case Give Details but No Answers August 25, New York Times by Duff Wilson

Email: Duff Wilson

20. Lacrosse is just not my game August 12, Newsobserver by Dennis Rogers

Write to:

19. By staying on the sidelines, Cheek shows no bravado August 5, Newsobserver by John Schwade

Email (editor):
Email (author):

18. Has the lacrosse case induced insanity? July 23, Herald Sun by Bob Ashley

Write to:

17. Wolves in Blazers and Khakis July 13, 2006 Washington Post by Marc Fisher

Write to: Email Marc Fisher
Copy to:
Copy to:
Copy to:

16. Another Team Rape July 12, 2006 Yahoo News by Susan Estrich

Write to:

15. D.C. Judge Convicts Duke Athlete In '05 Fight July 12, 2006 Washington Post by Henri E. Cauvin

Write to: Comments to Washington Post

14. Duke: Horror and Truth July 10, 2006 by Jesse Jackson

Write to:
Copy to : Jesse Jackson (please someone, send us Mr. Jackson's email address)

13. Let's talk sports July 2, 2006 Newsobserver by Orin Starn (Duke University Professor)

Write to:
Website: Biography of Orin Starn
Copy to: Letters to Newsoberver Editor

12. Sympathy for the Devils? June 28, 2006 Indy The Weekly Independent by Hal Crowther

Write to: (Letters to the editor)
Copy to: (Richard Harts, editor)
Copy to: (Hal Crowther)

11. The Media Rush to Duke's Defense June 27, 2006 Washington Post by Andrew Cohen

Write to:
Copy to:
Copy to:

10. Despite K's comment, race relations need work June 27, 2006 Herald Sun, Letters, by Karla FC Holloway (Duke University Professor)

Write to:
Website: Biography of Karla FC Holloway

9. Brodhead can't handle it June 17, 2006 Herald Sun, Letters, by Joseph Dibona (Duke University Professor)

Write to:
Website: Biography of Joseph Dibona

8. Media Put Accuser on Trial in Duke Rape Case June 15, 2006 National Organization for Women (NOW)

Write to:
or visit:

7. Duke team shows lack on integrity June 14, 2006 USA Today, Susan Pons

Write to:
Author: Susan Pons

6. What Does it Take to Get an Athletic Program Shut Down June 6, 2006 Pioneer Press, Tom Powers

Write to:
Author: Tom Powers

5. Needed: Special Prosecutor for the Duke Case June 4, 2006 Fox News, Susan Estrich

Write to:
Author: Susan Estrich

4. Sex and Scandal at Duke June 1, 2006 Rolling Stone Magazine, Janet Reitman

Write to:
Author: (Janet Reitman)

3. Min. Muhammmad Calls for community to stand with rape victim

Write to:
Author: Cash Michaels

2. Duke free-falling from grace May 27, 2007 Philadephia Inquirer, Stephen Smith

Write to:

1. The Duke Case’s Cruel Truth May 24, 2006 Washington Post, Lynee Duke

Write to:
Author: Lynee Duke


At 3:57 PM, June 02, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

May 25, 2006
Duke Does Duke - Badly
Lynne Duke's article in the Washington Post on the Duke rape case is a noxious mix of racial innuendo and political correctness:

In the sordid but contested details of the case, African American women have heard echoes of a history of some white men sexually abusing black women -- and a stereotype of black women as hypersexual beings and thus fair game.

The mainstream media have largely tiptoed around the brutal truth that has been discussed among black women in private conversations, in the blogosphere and on college campuses. It is that the Duke case is in some ways reminiscent of a black woman's vulnerability to a white man during the days of slavery, reconstruction and Jim Crow, when sex was used as a tool of racial domination.

But of course. And if we switched the race of alleged offenders and victims in the case, Lynne Duke would no doubt churn out a 1,453-word front-page article examining the "brutal truth" and the echoes of "slavery, reconstruction, and Jim Crow" of a rush to judgment against black men who were suspected of sexually assaulting a white woman.

This case really shouldn't be about race, and Lynn Duke's effort to shoehorn it into a metaphor for the devaluation and exploitation of black women in modern America borders on the pathetic. The reason the alleged victim is getting "no benefit of any doubt" as Julianne Malveaux is quoted as saying in the article - isn't because of the color of her skin but because nearly all the evidence publicly available in the case points to the very real possibility she's lying.

Duke pushes her agenda further by quoting Durham community activist Victoria Peterson:

"White men have always been fascinated with black women over the years. That's nothing new," says Peterson, who launched Durham Citizens Against Rape and Sexual Abuse in response to this case. With outlets such as BET and others portraying African American women as highly sexed, "young white boys, they want to touch, they want to see," Peterson says.
Where's the evidence for that claim? Even if Ms. Peterson's general, presumably non-expert opinion about the attitudes of young white males toward African-American women happens to be correct, fascination is still a long way from rape.

Facts can be inconvenient things, and based on the data available the facts are that the vast majority of rapes and/or sexual assaults are not interracial. According to statistics from the Department of Justice, the estimated number of rape and sexual assault cases in 2003 involving a white offender and a black victim was 0.0%. Over the course of the last eight years white-on-black rape/sexual assault cases averaged 6.9%, while black-on-white rape/sexual assault cases over the same period were slightly higher at 10.8%.

Clearly, this doesn't rule out the possibility that three white college students gang raped an African-American woman back in March, as alleged. But it does add some perspective to Lynne Duke's article in the Post. The particulars of this case are bad enough without dredging up and promoting ancient, racially divisive ghosts - especially if it turns out the rape charge is a lie.

Posted by Tom Bevan at 12:49 PM

At 4:00 PM, June 02, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Response to Stephen Smith's article in the Philadelphia Inquirer dates May 27, 2006.

Dear Ms. Bennett,

I am writing to you to call your attention to an outrageous column by Stephen Smith that was published in your newspaper. Mr. Smith directly accuses the Duke Women's Lacrosse team of supporting the accused members of the men's lacrosse team because they are white.

Mr. Smith alleges that Duke University 'turns a blind eye and deaf ear away from 31 female lacrosse players - 30 of whom are white - clearly trying to swing the national pendulum in favor of the accused." Furthermore, Mr. Smith accuses the entire institution of being "selfish," "stupid," and "giving Jim Carrey's depiction of Dumb & Dumber a serious run for its money" because Duke did not prevent the Women's Lacrosse team from declaring that they believe the accused players are innocent. The accused players are classmates and friends of the players on the women's team. Mr. Smith's argument appears to be that friends and classmates cannot support other friends and classmates because the allegations, however fantastic, might be true. This logic completely flips the notion of innocent until proven guilty on its head. I fear that Mr. Smith's real argument is that the women's lacrosse players should not support the men's players because they are white and the accuser in the case is black.

There has been a lot of evidence released in the Duke lacrosse case, all of it suggesting that the allegations are a hoax. Obviously the judicial process needs to be allowed to run its course, but when the truth is finally determined there will be a lot of scrutiny directed at the media coverage of this case and the contribution of that coverage to the racial divisions caused by the case. I strongly encourage you to encourage your columnists to study the facts they choose to comment on and to refrain from simply taking a side in a controversy based on the race of the participants.

At 4:01 PM, June 02, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Response to Stephen Smith's article in the Philadelphia
Inquirer dated May 27, 2006.

Mr. Smith:

I've just read your recent article about the Duke lacrosse program. My initial reaction was one of anger. However, that anger soon changed to sadness . . . sadness to witness another journalist sacrifice his integrity on the alter of political correctness.

What you apparently don't know about this case appears capable of filling volumes. Let's start wit a politically ambitious district general (small letters by intent), who in his haste to curry election day favor violated virtually every rule of Professional Conduct promulgated by the North Carolina Bar Association (as intellectual curiosity permits, you can look it up yourself . . . see Rules 3.8 Special Responsibilities of A Prosecutor, and 3.6 Trial Publicity.) Mix in two "dancers" of questionable character with felony records (quick payday?), along with a once great university brought to its knees by radical feminists, racial opportunists, and the class warfare crowd and soon the "New South" reverts to the "old South" . . . shades of the Scottsboro Boys. Dr. King died for this?

Have you or any of "your sources" taken any time at all to examine any of the discovery "evidence" or dispositions? Shouldn't one find it highly suspect that the second "dancer" was able to have criminal sanctions from a past conviction for embezzlement waived in apparent exchange for changing her initial testimony, or that a key defense witness was arrested by two of the Duke case officers and held for five hours on a three year old warrant for something he did not do in a transparent act of witness intimidation, or that after spending the weekend sleeping with at least three men the alleged "victim" showed signs of recent sexual activity. Hum. I won't even mention the photo identification irregularities or DNA civil rights violations. Given all this, and more, I opine there would have been demonstrations in the Streets of Durham had socio-economic factors been reversed.

These boys are guilty alright . . . guilty of exercising incredibly bad judgment, i.e. "don't wrestle with pigs, you'll both get dirty, but the pigs will enjoy it."

Coach Kimel, alone, recognizes all this. That is why what she did was an incredible act of courage. Contrast her bravery under fire with the spinelessness displayed by Duke's Hollow Men - its alleged leaders . . . '"not with a bang, but with a whimper" [T. S. Eliot, 1925}

Unfortunately, Mr. Smith your piece is yet another example of why Americans are abandoning major newspapers such as yours, and network news, in favor of Internet access. You, for example, chose to recycle the New York Times declaration (without any supporting evidence) that these boys were out of control, or whatever. Would it surprise you Mr. Smith that the lacrosse program graduates all its players, many of whom are academic all-Americans, that they do many hours of community service including clinics in Durham. Nah . . . that wouldn't sell papers would it.

At 4:01 PM, June 02, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Reply to Lynee Duke – Washington Post, May 24th article

Here’s the real cruel truth. I guess you haven’t noticed how quickly your case is falling apart. Each passing day seems to bring even more amazing revelations . . . any you, madam, bless us with this amazing stuff. Earth to Ms. Duke . . . the NAACP is now seeking a gag order to stop the bleeding . . . funny, guess one wasn’t needed while Duke U. was being dragged thru the mud.

Turns out our little “dancer” was even busier than we thought “working” her way thru school. It just warms our hearts to see her providing for the little ones. Let’s see now, there’s the “boyfriend”, “two drivers”, and how many “hotel guests” was that exactly? Nice.

Re the Brown Sugar fantasy, I guess a close examination of national inter-racial rape stats will lend substance to that thesis, right? Oops; it says here that incidents of white on black rounds statistically to zero . . . must be a reporting error, right?

I leave you with this . . . just about everybody that subscribes to the drivel that you are selling is already on board . . . no one else with any sense is buying what you are selling, lady.

Have a nice day.

At 4:02 PM, June 02, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Response to Stephen Smith's article in the Philadelphia Inquirer dates May 27, 2006.

Simple physics lesson :
an object or person cannot be in two places at the same time.

Of the accused Duke players :
Collin Finnerty was at a Mexican restaurant, attested to by six witnesses, a waiter, a time-stamped food order, and a time-stamped credit card payment.

Reade Seligman was riding in a cab (attested to by the driver and the taxi company's time logs), at an ATM machine (photos), and inside his dorm (time-logged entry)

Ergo : neither one was at that same time raping, sodomizing and brutalizing anyone on Buchanan street.

This isn't rocket science. Nor does this even begin to explore the time-stamped photos, the cell-phone records of the accuser, the (likely) video of the doings inside the house,
the total lack of any physical evidence at all for the attack, the improperly conducted photo IDs,
the absenting of himself of the police chief from this entire affair, etc.

This is a concoction of the accuser, who has a record of doing this sort of thing.

I agree with you that rape is indeed a serious matter. But so is charging rape falsely. One of the accused in the Tawana Brawley affair committed suicide because of the circus which followed that charge. It is surely the ethical duty of the media not to contribute to a lynch-mob atmosphere; and to trumpet the innocence of those falsely accused, even against all odds.

And there is no place better to start than with this case, now.

At 4:02 PM, June 02, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Re: The cruel truth. Please, please, please stop doing future rapists favors by printing idiotic articles like Lynee Duke's The Cruel Truth.
Re: Dukes Fall From Grace: I never thought I would see such a stupid selfish article printed in a reputable newspaper. Stephen Smith is a racist in feminist clothing. He's not doing future rape victims any favors.

At 11:05 AM, June 10, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Response to Tom Powers article "What Does it Take to Get an Athletic Program Shut Down"

Dear Mr. Powers,

I read your article about Duke reinstating its lacrosse program with great disappointment. Although you don't say it explicitly, the headline and several of your statements suggest that you favor shutting the entire program down. You not only defend the University's decision to cancel this season, you appear to suggest it would be appropriate for the University to cancel the sport indefinitely. Incredibly, you claim this view is justified regardless of the veracity of the rape allegations.

Your article states:

"But whether any of the rape charges stick should be irrelevant to the future of the program. There is little doubt that the overall behavior was quite disgusting. There is little doubt that awful racial slurs were directed at the two women."

By making this statement, you add your name to the growing chorus of "not guilty does not mean innocent." This is unfortunate. If the rape allegations are false, the three accused players, the entire lacrosse team, and Duke University itself have been the victims of a horrible and criminal slander. No amount of minor offenses to our laws, tastes, or sensibilities by the lacrosse team could ever justify the perpetration of this crime. Your article appears to be taking steps in that direction.

My own view is that the evidence in this case strongly suggests the allegations are false. Your article doesn't dispute this and acknowledges that "the prosecution's case appears shaky." I disagree with, but understand, the views expressed by many that we should not rush to a conclusion of innocence any more than we should rush to a conclusion of guilt. What I cannot comprehend, however, is how anyone could suggest that guilt or innocence is "irrelevant" and therefore we should convict and punish the entire team regardless of what really happened at the party. I understand that it is satisfying to condemn others for their sins, particularly in the press. I also understand how having condemned someone for acts that are later proven never to have occurred, there is an inclination to find other acts and condemn those. Please consider the implications before doing this in your articles. To be honest with you, I find it more reprehensible than attending a wild party in college.


At 11:09 AM, June 10, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Response to Susan Estrich's article "Needed: Special Prosecutor for the Duke Case"

Dear Ms. Estrich,

I read with interest today your article suggesting that North Carolina appoint a special prosecutor in the Duke LAX case. Before I say anything further, let me at least agree with your basic suggestion. I think appointing a new prosecutor would go a long way towards assuring the public that this case is being brought on its merits. If a new prosecutor were to step in and say that he/she had reviewed the evidence and was going to move forward, I would be first in line to take a step back and wait for more evidence before continuing to comment.

However, I want to take issue with two subpoints you made in your article that I believe are unfair. First, you premise your suggestion on the notion that the accused players have high-priced fancy lawyers who thus far have overmatched Mr. Nifong. The primary evidence you cite for this assertion is that a group called the Commitee for Fairness to Duke Families has hired Bob Bennett, who you describe as a "legendary Clinton defender." I have not heard one word from Bob Bennett in either the television or print media. As far as I know, he does not represent any of the accused players in any way. David Evans is represented by Joseph Cheshire and Brad Brannon. Colin Finnerty is represented by Wade Smith and Bill Cotter. Reade Seligmann is represented by Kirk Osborn and Ernest Conner. All of these attorneys are local to the Raleigh/Durham area. I am sure they are all accomplished, but I doubt any of them have the reputation or the billing rate of Bob Bennett. The attorney who has been in the forefront from a public speaking standpoint has been Joseph Cheshire.

He was the primary speaker at the first and second DNA press conferences and he then spoke and answered questions after David Evans spoke on his own behalf. If you want to charge any one with manipulating the media, then you should direct your charges to Mr. Cheshire. The other attorneys have primarily released information by filing motions. Your article strongly suggested that the families of the accused players and their "wealthy supporters" had retained hired guns from the "A" list of criminal lawyers to represent the players. That is clearly not true.

I make this point to you because I am concerned that you are laying the groundwork for arguments to be made in the future that the accused were only acquitted because of their wealth and fancy lawyers. In effect, what I fear you are intentionally or unintentionally setting up is a claim that "not guilty" does not mean "innocent." Your citations to the William Kennedy Smith case and the OJ Simpson case are consistent with this suggestion. I want to suggest to you that this is highly unfair. If I could follow-up on a point I made in my earlier e-mail, the Duke LAX case is distinguishable from the cases you cite. William Kennedy Smith admitted having sex with Patricia Bowman. That case turned on whether the sex was consensual. The same was true in the Mike Tyson and Kobe Bryant cases. In fact, I cannot think of a single high profile rape case where the accused denied categorically that any sexual contact took place. Similarly, OJ Simpson obviously didn't (and couldn't) claim that Nicole Simpson and Ron Goldman weren't murdered. From day one the Duke LAX players have stated that no sex took place. They have stuck to that story through two rounds of DNA testing. That was an absolutely suicidal strategy if they in fact did have sex with the alleged victim because they could not have used the consensual defense used in the Smith and Bryant trials. The alleged victim had a medical exam within hours of the alleged attack. I understand that those exams do not always produce DNA evidence, but the players would have been taking an enormous risk if they were lying. Surely you would agree that an "A" list criminal defense lawyer would not advise a client accused of rape to deny publicly that no sexual activity took place.

Second, it seems to me that you are assuming that commentators are questioning Mr. Nifong's conduct solely because of his political interests. I want to suggest that you have this backwards. Commentators are having difficulty explaining Mr. Nifong's conduct and are left with no other explanation. Without reviewing the litany of items, I want to focus on one thing in particular--the alleged victim's cell phone. We all heard Mr. Nifong state in open court that he did not believe that the call information on the alleged victim's cell phone was relevant. He stated that he felt the fact that she left it at the house was important, but that he didn't see why the data on the phone was important. Everyone who has read about this case knows that Reade Seligmann's primary defense is an alibi and that that alibi depends on the evening's timeline. In fact, the prosecution needs to prove that at least some of the defense's evidence establishing the timeline (e.g., pictures, ATM receipts, cell phone logs, neighbor testimony) is incorrect or fabricated. Any cell phone calls made or received by the alleged victim are highly relevant. They could establish the time of arrival and could establish times it is unlikely the alleged victim was being assaulted.

Mr. Cheshire's motion filed on May 26th indicated that the discovery information turned over by the prosecution contained data retrieval for the other three cell phones recovered during the March 16th search of 610 Buchanan, but did not contain information from the alleged victim's phone. Mr. Nifong stated in open court during the Seligmann hearing that the information had not been retrieved. These actions strike many of us as irrational or deceptive. We are having trouble coming up with explanations other than a rush to judgment caused by political concerns.

By now I'm sure you are wondering why I am spending so much time writing you about this case. I am doing so for two reasons. First, I want to believe that you will publicly state that "not guilty" means innocent if and when these players prevail at trial. Similarly, I want to believe that you will not blame the lawyers or the media if the alleged victim recants or refuses to testify. If and when it is proven that the allegations are false, the accused players deserve to have someone of your conviction and reputation state publicly that they are innocent and that the charges made against them were a crime.

Second, and more importantly, if this case turns out to be a fraud, sexual assault victims everywhere will need the passionate, insightful, and intelligent commentary of Susan Estrich to protect them in the future. I am hopeful that you will be able to explain the unique aspects of the Duke LAX case and fight efforts to scale back rape shield laws and other protections that have been granted to victims. There will be efforts to expand the implications of this case and you will be needed to help fight those efforts.


At 10:38 AM, June 14, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

June 12, 2006
Below is a letter written by Joan Foster to the editor of Newsobserver. The letter comments on the overall handling of the Duke Lacrosse case by the Newsoberver.

Ms. Sill, May I presume to suggest some work assignments at the N&O?

Please send someone over to the city manager's office. Let's remember after the Duke report was issued, how he excoriated the Duke officer about that "eavesdropping" report. The one that stated the accuser told multiple stories that first night. He assured us the police denied this. In light of the recent filings that show police notes confirming multiple stories, the N&O needs to talk to him again. Who told him what? Did he talk to the police or Nifong? Did he know the truth and lie? Or was he misled, and if so, by whom? Get your best investigative reporter on this. There is a story here, a big one. The story of how and why these charges came to be …. and EVERYONE who was involved. He misled the public. Why? What is the story behind the scenes here?

Get somebody else over to the police department. Is it true the Police Chief is on leave? Who is running the store over there...Nifong? There must be one man with a conscience over there, appalled at this witch-hunt. Here's a catchy phrase, Tell them "We know you know,"

Get your editorial page in gear. It looks downright strange that NOW you have so little to say. The wheels are coming off Durham's justice system in front of a world audience, and the local paper is holding forth on...cable TV and kindergarten issues? Melanie, Melanie, Melanie. If you all have writers block, I'll even ghost-write a piece for you. Here's a starter:

We'll call it "Diddling with Justice in Durham." Start with Kim's original "crock" statement that the rape never took place. Observe how it morphs into a strong "maybe" after Knifing cuts her a sweet deal. Next, we have the five or six line-ups it took, to get an identification from the accuser. Huh? They were ALL lacrosse their jerseys! No wrong answers? On to the poor immigrant taxi driver, who steps forwardly proudly in the American way. Soon after, he is picked up on a dodgey two year old warrant by the DETECTIVES on the rape case? To the nation at large Durham is beginning to look like Mayberry-run-amuck. Your editorial silence assumes this is business as usual in our hometown. Gosh, isn't that how every prosecutor gets a conviction. Can your editorial page do outrage? If not now, when?

Send another reporter to do some rummaging through old police/court files. Find ONE other incident in Durham where charges were pursued ....when multiple inconsistent stories were disputed by 46 witnesses and no DNA. Just give us ONE to show that these charges are Durham's NORM, not a politically motivated aberration.

Time for a sit-down with Ruth Sheehan. Her empathy-radar is now honed on paying for illegal immigrants’ college education. HMMM? How does she feel about every single taxpayer in Durham contributing to Nifong's campaign? How you say? Well, taxpayers paid for ALL those DNA tests...the macho move that got Nifong elected. All that taxpayer money was supposed to separate the guilty from the innocent, said Nifong. For all that taxpayer money, the people of Durham got a partial match on top of a fake nail in a guy’s garbage can. (One can only imagine Nifong demonstrating in court how this woman fought for her life against three athletes using only the top of one finger. This I would pay to see) Explain to Ruth, that after the players civil attorneys get done suing the city of Durham, the taxpayers are going to be a bit tapped out to chip in on anything new.

Joan Foster

At 12:29 PM, June 14, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is a response written to the Rolling Stone article "Sex and Scandal at Duke" by Janet Reitman.

Dear Rolling Stone:

I read Janet Reitman's article titled "Sex and Scandal at Duke" with disappointment and disgust. Her article is a textbook case of pop journalism--loosely based on fact, exaggerated, and intended to capitalize on a singular event to prove a broad, unsubstantiated sociological conclusion. Ms. Reitman's article suffers from three major deficiencies: (1) it self-admittedly focuses on a small group of students to describe an entire university student body; (2) it ignores the facts of the rape investigation that serves as the backdrop of the article; and (3) it uses grotesque stereotypes that are demonstrably untrue.

First, Ms. Reitman's article describes itself as focused on a supposed "group of 500" Duke students. Setting aside whether her descriptions are accurate, even if this group existed it would represent less than 10 percent of the 6000 Duke undergraduate students. Instead of the "core four" sororities, Ms. Reitman could have easily chosen to focus on the evangelical Christian population at Duke and describe Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Intervarsity Christian Fellowship, and Cambridge Christian Fellowship. She would have found extreme personalities, generous do-gooders, and even judgmental intolerant types. Based on the same degree of factual investigation in her sex article, and using the same simplistic lens to describe individuals as dominated by one feature, she could have painted the entire Duke campus as dominated by a new religiosity. For that matter, she could have chosen any of a number of other groups of 500 students to prove some other nonsensical sociological point.

Second, Ms. Reitman slanders the female student population at Duke by arguing their belief in the lacrosse players' innocence is a result of a puppy love-induced ignorance. Her article completely ignores the actual facts of the rape investigation and the mounds of exculpatory evidence, including time stamped photos, eyewitness testimony, ATM video, cell phone records, and two rounds of DNA testing. Rather than attribute reasoned judgment to Duke female students, Ms. Reitman instead attributes the fact that "there has been barely a peep out of the mainstream girls at Duke, unless it's to support the players" to a surprising "retro view of rape." Ms. Reitman argues this "retro view of rape" is caused by an undefined sociological trend in the way female college students view sex. She does not even consider the possibility that the accused players are innocent or that forming a reasoned judgment based on available facts might not be a "retro view" of anything.

Finally, and most distressing, Ms. Reitman's article seeks to describe all Duke students as grotesque stereotypes. Relying on, of all things, an internet blog, Ms. Reitman seeks to convince readers of Rolling Stone that Duke is dominated by such complex individuals as Johnny Soccer Player, Sally PiPhi, and Chrissy Tridelt. Although Tom Wolfe has convinced many that these types of grotesque characticures are somehow art, they are juvenile at best and insidious at worst. By labeling the men's lacrosse team as a bunch of wealthy, white "hooligans," the press coverage of the alleged rape practically convicted the entire team before any facts were in the public domain. Supposed "in the know" sources painted a picture of a group of thugs in SUVs with "LAX" stickers driving from party to party to prey on doting female admirers. Three men now stand accused of a brutal crime and even the most explosive exculpatory evidence has not yet been able to overcome the initial media descriptions of the group with which they've been identified. This is tragic and unfortunate.

The choice to run Ms. Reitman's article, with all its isolated spicy details, to capitalize on the situation was an embarrassing and regrettable decision for Rolling Stone magazine. The magazine became a willing participant in the slander of an entire athletic team and attempted to escalate that slander to the entire Duke University student body, all in a transparent attempt to sell magazines based on sexual intrigue. Under normal circumstances, it would have been shameful. Considering the charges brought against three innocent men, it was unconscionable.


At 12:16 PM, June 15, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is in response to the Susan Pons article published in USA Today, dated June 13, and entitled “Duke team shows lack on integrity”.
Dear Ms. Pons,

I read your opinion piece: “Duke Team shows lack on integrity.” I think you’re on to something here. May I presume to suggest a few more letters you might write?

Two Canadian tourists were brutally stabbed yesterday crossing the street in Manhattan. I believe a letter on jaywalking is in order.

A bus carrying Sri Lankan school children has been destroyed by a land mine. We need to address parents’ inability to embrace home-schooling.

A 26-yr old restaurant manager was murdered in Chicago. Will you write about health peril of promoting fast food cuisine, or shall I?

Has anyone confronted Sharon Rocha with the fact Laci’s dog was running around the neighborhood unleashed?

At the moment, three young men are the victims of a baseless sham,… a witch-hunt instigated by a morally corrupt prosecutor out for re-election. With only an allegation (and one that has multiple changing versions to it) and no evidence, they and their families have been persecuted, prosecuted and subjected to death threats. Please read the two articles in the Durham News and Observer today contrasting D.A. Nifong’s statements with sworn court documents. Currently, the wheels are coming off the justice system in Durham, North Carolina.

That being said, Ms. Pons, I do not approve of college drinking. Gee, do you think we could discuss it another day?

Joan Foster

At 7:02 AM, June 19, 2006, Blogger Alaska 2007 said...

Following is an email sent to Ruth Sheehan regarding her piece in the June 19 N&O

Finally!!! You see this case for what it is...a fraud!
Please continue to report the truth rather than "Durham According to Nifong." It is amazing what havoc one man can wreak. Nifong has done incredible harm to Finnerty, Seligman and Evans as well as Duke and Durham, he deserves to be exposed for what he truly is...a liar!

Duke Lacrosse Parents '02

At 3:28 PM, June 19, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is in response to an opinion published in Herald Sun, written by Duke Associate Professor Joseph Dibona.
Dear Associate Professor Joseph Dibona,

Your opinion which was published in Herald Sun on June 17th convinces me that the one who should be resigning his post from Duke is you, not President Brodhead. What a pathetic piece that was? You seem to forget that only three people were indicted, not 47. You seem to desperately want all 47 Lacrosse players to be punished, not only three. And, for what --obviously for being white! That is the only fault you can come up with for the 44 students who were not indicted.

Professor, I am afraid your stuff is coming up. You better put a lid on it, before you get too embarrassed. You and others like you, “reverse racists”, are a disgrace to the Duke community and to the whole American way of life. Perhaps, you should take a cue from Professor Baker and get out of the place you hate so much. Since you are so displeased with President Brodhead’s actions, what is keeping you at Duke?

In addition to the above, your characterization of the Coleman report and the words you put into President Brodhead's mouth are all gross misstatements. It seems you are taking too much liberty with other people's words and reports and tailoring them to suit your own needs. Or perhaps, you have a reading deficiency.


At 3:32 PM, June 19, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

A response to Associate Duke Professor Joseph Dibona's opinion in Herald Sun entitled "Brodhead can't handle it"
Prof. Dibona,

My name is KC Johnson; I'm a professor at Brooklyn College. I've blogged extensively about the lacrosse case, and saw your recent letter in the Durham Herald-Sun.

I thought I had followed the case quite closely, but your letter mentioned two pieces of information I hadn't previously seen, and I was wondering if you could forward me links for them:

1.) "For months [Brodhead] said we should await the outcome of the judicial process before determining what should be the next step." I was unaware that Brodhead ever said that the lacrosse team shouldn't be restored until the jury trial had ended. Perhaps this statement hasn't been previously reported?

2.) "He ignored the sound advice of his own Bowen-Chambers committee." I was unaware that the Bowen/Chambers report made any recommendation on the future status of the lacrosse team. I read the entire report twice, but perhaps there's a codicil that's circulating only on campus? Of course, as you know, the Coleman Committee report expressly recommended that Brodhead reinstate the team.

If you could send me links to substantiate these statements, I'd appreciate it.

I should say I wholly agree with your conclusion that Brodhead's actions "clearly show[] his inability to understand where Duke is and where it needs to go." A president who refuses to protest the local prosecutor sending police to Duke dorms, to question Duke students outside the presence of their counsel; or who fails to rebuke 88 faculty issuing the "listening" statement, based on highly negative "facts" about their own institution's students that have proved wrong, has, in my opinion, an " inability to understand where Duke is and where it needs to go."

KC Johnson

At 3:47 PM, June 19, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mr.Dibona: Re your letter in the Herald Sun…. “Brodhead can’t handle it.”

I find it of interest that you paraphrase Shakespeare’s masterpiece, Julius Caesar,… perhaps unwittingly, in your rebuke of Brodhead’s decision to reinstate the Duke Lacrosse team. Brodhead “ should be made of sterner stuff ”, you say. Of course, one assumes you know the actual quote to be ”Ambition should be made of sterner stuff.” My, we have seen much of ambition in this Lacrosse case, have we not? From a morally deficient D.A. using a bogus rape charge for political gain , to the Traveling Tragedy Show types that fly in to exploit the “Drama du Jour” for headlines…this case is top heavy with individuals finding something sweet for themselves at the expense of these young men. . Of course, I would not imply that your almost sycophantic praise in the first paragraph might reference your own ambition (just in case Brodhead bunkers down), but in any event, your choice of phrase brought Julius Caesar to my mind.

While on topic, Marc Anthony’s funeral speech contains a few other quotes that are suitable to this Duke debacle. “Oh judgment thou art fled to brutish beasts” might be one. You actually say that Brodhead should wait till “the team was found innocent or guilty.” Excuse me? “The team?” Even the nefarious Nifong has said no more charges will be brought in this case. “The team” is not on trial…much as you and some others might like that to be the case. “The team” will not be found innocent or guilty. “The team “is not part of the “forthcoming jury trial.” By presuming them under some sword of judgment, Mr .Dibona, your own “judgment” seems poorly thought out.

If you wish to outlaw this team, then you must put that wish in a much larger context and require the same standards of every team, fraternity, and “Save the Whales” group , etc on campus. Because at this juncture, we can only be discussing raucous behavior, that can be your only charge. . There is no proven racial context to this story, and, last I looked up from my Shakespeare tome, there was still a presumption of innocence. . So, may we defer that discussion for another day? The story we see now of possible prosecutorial abuse is so much more important to America, than bad behavior on Buchanan St. that once again, your judgment seems infantile. Every day, America grows more appalled, as we learn more of Mr. Nifong, his case, his tactics, his lies and his motives.

As for the lacrosse team: yes, the party was a mistake. Indeed,.” it was a grievous fault and grievously has it been answered”. Far, far too grievously in the minds of fair minded Americans unencumbered by ambition or agenda themselves.

If you can still look at this unfolding tragedy of young men’s lives, sacrificed on the altar of one man’s ambition, and not see the great themes of revenge, righteous bigotry and betrayal….then I suggest you need to read more of Shakespeare yourself. .

And that this flawed logic should come from an associate professor at Duke University….to quote Marc Anthony in Julius Caesar again… is “perhaps the unkindest cut of all.

Joan Foster

At 4:28 PM, June 19, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Another response to Duke Associate Professor Joseph Dibona's article in Herald Sun (Brodhead can't handle it).
This is clearly a case where PHD stands for Piled Higher and Deeper. Since when is the TEAM on trial? Will the TEAM be found guilty or innocent? Here is another (Associate) Professor at Duke that has turned his back on the whole team. By his logic, the whole University should be closed down. The three (innocent!) young men are on the lacrosse team, so shut the team down. Well, the team is part of Duke University, so take it to DiBona’s next logical step – close the University. I have a better idea, instead of Brodhead stepping down, why doesn’t DiBona step down?

Fair minded

At 11:53 PM, June 24, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Two letters follow that were published in the HeraldSun this week in response to Mr. Dibona's "Brodhead can't handle it":

Blame Nifong, not Duke or President Brodhead

In response to Joe Dibona's June 17 letter, "Brodhead can't handle it."

There may be valid questions concerning how Duke University and President Richard Brodhead handled rape allegations against members of the Duke lacrosse team, but I am dumbfounded by Dibona's statement "it no longer matters whether the team will be found guilty or innocent." I am absolutely amazed that a professor from Duke would make such a statement. The Duke lacrosse team has not been charged with a crime.

Further, if Dibona were paying attention to current news on this case, he would understand that the accusations made against three members of the team are, in all likelihood, false.

I am glad that Duke administrators, professors and coaches have recently begun to make statements in support of this team and the young men who stand accused.

I would suggest that Dibona focus his attention on the actions of our district attorney. Mike Nifong declared these young men rapists in multiple media interviews. It now appears he had limited evidence (at best) to support his public statements.

It is Nifong's responsibility to seek the truth, not just convictions. I believe Nifong's view of the truth was blinded by political motivation, actions in direct conflict with the NC Rules of Professional Conduct and worthy of investigation by the State Bar.

Had Nifong done the job he is sworn to do, the questions regarding Brodhead and Duke's response would be moot.

June 22, 2006

Support for Brodhead

I found the June 17 letter from Joe Dibona offensive and insulting. He criticizes President Richard Brodhead for reinstating lacrosse next year.
Dibona seems to join the few ivory tower professors who would like to see all athletics discontinued at Duke.

Many bright, hard-working young men and women could not obtain an education at a prestigious university except for being blessed with remarkable athletic skills. They come from fine homes but their parents cannot possibly pay expensive tuitions such as the young man whose father is a fireman.

The mind-set that would deny them is very shallow. Athletics are an important part of college life. President Brodhead is the right man for the job. Duke is fortunate to have him.

June 22, 2006

At 4:43 PM, June 26, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Another response to Joseph Dibona's article in Herald Sun (Brodhead can't handle it).
Brodhead shares blame

Professor Joe Dibona's letter of June 17 stated that he feels Duke University President Richard Brodhead's actions in response to the lacrosse affair show his inability to lead the university. This letter drew two critiques in your June 22 edition. Beth Brown, in "Blame Nifong, not Duke or President Brodhead" correctly places the major criticism on District Attorney Mike Nifong. Yet it was Brodhead who put concern for image above the basic principle of innocence until proven guilty, by canceling the team's season and causing the resignation of a capable and loyal coach. This action made Duke a full party to Nifong's desperate attempt to win votes at whatever cost to other individuals or institutions. It also added to, rather than distracted from, the notoriety for Duke in the nation's media. Reinstating the schedule of the lacrosse team, though an admission of earlier mistakes, was again a decision based on image considerations rather than principle. Doris Ondek, whose June 22 letter revealed she felt Dibono was critical of Brodhead because Brodhead supported college athletics, missed the point. Duke has become a great university in large part because of leaders who put principle above more frivolous bases for decision. Dibono showed something of the same mettle in taking the stand he did.

June 26, 2006

At 1:23 PM, June 28, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is in response to Duke Professor Karla Holloway's letter to Herald Sun

We have for too long allowed the Karla Holloway's on this planet to define the "problematic issues of race, respect and equity." These are people who require, no DEMAND great sensitivity toward their own fragile egos, but will slam anyone to the ground who is not anointed BY THEM with victim status.

At the beginning of the Iraq war, a professor at Columbia called for our soldiers to kill their own officers. Even if one opposes this war, decent people should not tolerate this. Ward Churchill's smear of the 9-11 victims, protestors at military funerals, the viciousness that passes for politics on both sides... none of us seemingly require a modicum of decency anymore. We call out the other side,but we never critise our own. It's the new morality. Never criticize your own. Savage the rest.

The AA community has long complained of "broken" justice...a rush to judgement, crooked cops, rogue D.A.'s. This might have been an "A-ha!" moment for them."See, this is what OUR community often faces. Help us fix it." Instead, increasingly, it looks like a "Got-cha!" moment. If a black team had been gang-tested, if a white D.A. had met with the Klan, if a white judge today had singled out a young black man....would Karla and company stand quiet? But, this is the other side. Suspend reason. Slander. Send them to jail.

The girl? Her faults? Her problems? Minimize. Moralise. Never criticise your own.

This world would be a better place if black leaders in Durham would call for dismissal of this case.

If white leaders would call for compassion for the accuser.

If we all would agree to demand a standard of decent behavior, and CALL OUT OUR OWN!

Joan Foster

At 1:26 PM, June 28, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

In response to Duke Professor Karla Holloway's letter published in Herald Sun on June 27:

More Group of 88 Hypocrisy

by Robert KC Johnson

At 2:25 PM, June 28, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

In response to the Andrew Cohen article published in Washington Post: "The Media Rush to Defend Duke"

Dear Washington Post:

I was very disappointed to read Andrew Cohen's article entitled "The Media Rush to Duke's Defense" published on The article is misleading and displays a remarkable ignorance and/or willful denial of the facts made public in the case. I am simply dumbfounded that an article accusing the entire media of being subject to a "collective sort of reverse insanity" (whatever that means) and outright racism would contain so few facts about the actual incident and subsequent investigation in question. Numerous statements made in Mr. Cohen's article reveal a lack of diligent research and an agenda to put the Duke Lacrosse players on trial, regardless of the evidence. This agenda is revealed in the use of pejorative phrases such as "alleged rapists" and "[t]he presiding judge long ago should have stepped into this case and shut up the defense teams with a gag order" (emphasis added). Mr. Cohen appears to insist that reporters and interested observers are taking the defense team's words as "gospel" because of laziness or gullibility. Mr. Cohen's article is nothing short of a direction for these people to "shut up" and allow this travesty of justice to continue because titled national correspondents like Mr. Cohen say so.

Before continuing to advance this argument, I encourage Mr. Cohen and the Washington Post to consider the actual, public evidence in this case. This evidence includes time-stamped photos, cell phone records, ATM receipts, police reports, and handwritten statements and affidavits from eyewitnesses. All of these documents are available as attachments to motions that have been made public. Neither the mainstream press nor the dreaded blogs are simply taking the defense's word as "gospel." They are examining actual documents. Among these documents are electronic records and photos showing that Reade Seligmann was not even present at the only time the alleged attack could possibly have occurred. Also included are motions describing the contents of, and containing, the sealed medical records of the accuser. These records include the SANE nurse report that was cited in police affidavits on March 23 rd and on March 27th. The report was also cited by District Attorney Mike Nifong on television numerous times as conclusive proof that a rape occurred. Yet police notes and the time stamp on the printed copy of the records reveals that neither the police nor Mr. Nifong had the medical records at the time they were characterized as "obtained by a subpoena" and containing a conclusion "consistent" with a vaginal and anal assault. Furthermore, the medical report in fact does not contain these conclusions and does not contain evidence of any anal trauma whatsoever. Although the records were filed under seal, they were provided to MSNBC General Manager Dan Abrams and MSNBC Legal Analyst Susan Filan. They both confirmed the contents of the records are consistent with the defense's characterization. True, Mr. Abrams and Ms. Filan work for a competing network, but that doesn't mean that Mr. Cohen's attacks on the press for accepting defense "spin" without skepticism are any less inaccurate.

By conveniently ignoring or denying the actual facts in the Duke case, what I believe Mr. Cohen is really suggesting is that it's inappropriate for a defendant in a rape case to claim innocence until after the prosecution rests at trial. He adds his name, and without retort, the name of the Washington Post, to the chorus claiming that an accuser has a right to make accusations to a jury, regardless of the nature or magnitude of contradictory evidence. This suggestion is chilling . It is a complete perversion of both the First Amendment right to free speech and the Sixth Amendment right to a fair trial. Under what exception to the First Amendment does Mr. Cohen believe the government may issue a gag order to tell a citizen to "shut up" about being innocent of a wrongful criminal accusation? Pursuant to what does Mr. Cohen believe the Sixth Amendment was changed to require a citizen to prove innocence in front of a jury? Mr. Cohen appears to suggest that we completely destroy bedrock rights of citizens solely because he is uncomfortable with the accused players' "race and money and access to the media." Based on this discomfort, he has accused all of the media and those of us defending the players of falling victim to bias and "declaring the winner in a ballgame before the first pitch is thrown." Contrary to Mr. Cohen's assertion, the lives of these three young men are not a game. Our justice system and fundamental rights are not a game. The Bill of Rights were not passed to protect the rights of the government to throw "pitches" at innocent people.

Unfortunately, that is exactly what is happening to the three accused members of the Duke Lacrosse team. Many people, including some members of the press, have chosen to speak up in an effort to stop this tragedy. To date, I am disappointed that neither the Washington Post nor any of its contributors are among them. It astounds and infuriates me that instead, the Washington Post, through Andrew Cohen, would choose to speak out against them.


At 11:25 PM, June 28, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Reasonable Doubt at Duke
Washington Post June 28, 2006

Hello Ruth,
Often the media itself doesn't get the full story. It appears that slowly it is getting out. My son who played lacrosse in high school, knew two of the boys on the Duke team (not any of the three accused) and has several friends in common with those two players, my son was in the loop from the buzz of this circle friends. My son told me, on the second day after the news went national, that something strange is going on in Durham, that the District Attorney is trying to railroad the team, and that no rape happened at all.

In the past I have witnessed stories in the media about some event or person, but could tell from the behind the scenes connections and talk from the street, that the actual facts were very different from the headlines. No wonder bloggers are getting more important.

I do credit you with a well written piece based on logic that fills in gaps where the facts are not fully known. In the end Nifong will not be proven right. The shame is that he will never be punished for the terrible pain he has caused to not just those three boys, but the entire team, their parents and friends. In addition, that young lady's life will also be left in great pain and drift, not because of the Duke Lacrosse team, but because Nifong used her and did not help her find a way to recover from her behavior and pattern of covering her tracks with lies.

At 12:16 AM, June 29, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is in response to Andrew Cohen's article in Washington Post: “The media rush to Duke’s defense.” It was originally published in Real Clear Politics.

Duking It Out

Andrew Cohen wrote a less than convincing op-ed in the Washington Post yesterday saying a "collective sort of reverse insanity has descended upon the media" in the Duke lacrosse case. Cohen rails against the way reporters have been lapping up the defense's arguments and says that the judge "long ago should have stepped into this case and shut up the defense teams with a gag order."

My beef with Cohen's piece is that he makes only two passing references to Mike Nifong's deplorable behavior at the start of this case when Nifong waded into the media frenzy and did more than seventy interviews, including at least a few where he touted the certainty that a rape had occurred. Just how fair would it have been to gag the defense team after such a prejudicial media onslaught induced by the District Attorney?

Just because Nifong subsequently decided (after his election was secured, of course) to unilaterally disarm and stop talking about the case with the press doesn't mean the defense should have to surrender its right to discuss the case as well.

My other issue with Cohen's article is that it makes no reference to Nifong's mind-boggling decision to postpone the trial until the spring of next year. One logical way to clear up all the posturing and uncertainty surrounding the case is to get it into the courtroom as soon as possible. Surely if there has ever been a case that merited expediting, it's this one.
Instead, however, we have nine more months of speculation awaiting us, and the accused have nine more months of living in hellish limbo. Cohen writes:

The point is that we don't know. We haven't seen all of the evidence, haven't examined all of the testimony; haven't had the privilege of seeing the case unfold at trial the way it is supposed to.

How true. But also written like a man who isn't waiting to stand trial for a crime he may not have committed.

Tom Bevan
June 28, 2006

At 1:14 PM, June 29, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

In response to Hal Crowther's Sympathy for the Devils? article in the Weekly Independent.
Dear Independent:

I was shocked and appalled to read your cover story, "Sympathy for the Devils" by Hal Crowther. That an article could be published about something the magnitude of the Duke Lacrosse case and be so devoid of factual basis deeply troubles me. Because the article is a rambling mess of unfounded accusations of racism and elitism, I will keep my response brief. I can only assume that the article was printed in deference to the author and was not subject to any editorial scrutiny. For that reason, I would like to highlight for you a specific passage from the article so that you may be aware of why your publication will soon come to regret this incredible lack of journalistic judgment.

The intellectual bankruptcy of Mr. Crowther's article is revealed very early on with this statement:

"At this stage, decency dictates a perfect neutrality about who may be telling the truth. We know for certain that one of these defendants, who lawyered his way around a gay-bashing incident in Washington, is an individual of questionable character and self-control."

Colin Finnerty's case has not been heard by a court. The facts of the incident are not known and in no way "certain." The incident was not "gay-bashing" and Colin Finnerty was not charged with a hate crime. He agreed to do community service instead of fight the charges. It is simply unfathomable that in two consecutive sentences your publication would demand "perfect neutrality" in a case with stacks and stacks of public documents, yet conclude "for certain" that a contested event with virtually no public documents shows that Mr. Finnerty is "an individual of questionable character and self-control."

It is also beyond me how this article can claim that "decency dictates a perfect neutrality about who may be telling the truth." Mr. Crowther does no such thing. He categorically dismisses all sworn court motions and attached documents as paid defense spin. He even goes so far as to accuse all of us of being racist for even considering the facts set forth in these documents. Mr. Crowther states, "If you feel a compulsion to believe them, you're the one who might catch a glimpse of your inner racist in the mirror."

I don't know how for a single second you can justify deciding to print this nonsense. As if the uninformed outrageous assertions weren't enough, the article is accompanied by a picture of a protestor holding a sign stating "Get a conscience. Not a lawyer." In effect, what I understand the article to be saying is that the accused should not obtain counsel and should not defend themselves in any way, shape or form. This implicit suggestion is made in a lengthy cover story that does not address one single specific fact of either the party in question or the subsequent investigation. Under any circumstances, the assertion that a criminal defendant should not obtain counsel is indefensible. Given all the evidence that has come forward in the Duke lacrosse case, such a claim in your article is so outrageous and ridiculous that it should cause everyone to question the fundamental integrity of your publication as a whole.


At 2:49 PM, June 29, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Excuse me for being out of the intelligencia loop - though I'm a native Tar Heel - but who is Mr. Crowther and why should I listen to him? That said, he clearly made one point: he likes the clicking sound of his fingers punching computer keys.

At 9:22 AM, June 30, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You'd think the Independent would have the decency to say nothing about this case rather than bashing the defendants, because the Independent is the go-to source for escort service advertisements in Durham.

At 9:12 AM, July 02, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

In response to Duke Professor Orin Stan's letter "Let's talk sports"
To little lord Orin:

You rightly take Krzyzewski to task for his mealy-mouthed comments, but refer only briefly to "the perils of preconceptions and snap judgments" made in March and April.

And who made these "snap judgements", Mr Starn?

Gee, I think it was Anne Allison, your chairperson, and most of the rest of the members of your own Cultural Anthropology department.

Their lynch-mob letter and poster (still on the AfAm department website) was and is a disgusting public act of vigilantism and betrayal of their role as educators.

Will your department still be administerinig justice "no matter what the police and courts decide"?

Is there a torture chamber in the basement of the Social Sciences building?

Maybe you can ask Ms Allison when she returns from her 3-month vacation.

And the "preconceptions" continue.

Your Op-ed is more of the same.... blame-shifting and hypocrisy.

You sling unsubstantiated claims of the use of the "n-word" to continue to demonize the accused (who said the n-word? Was it Dave, Collin or Reade? Or was it Brett? We need a name, Orin Nifong. Otherwise, it is just slander and demonization)

I guess you also just *forgot* to mention that the racist talk that night was reportedly bidirectional, "limp-dick white boy".

Oh wait, you're just a leftist anthropologist, you don't actually have to tell a balanced story, do you? Especially now that you have

The behavior of you and felllow CA faculty will not soon be forgotten. I and others will make sure of that.

And as a result you and a huge swath of Duke liberal arts faculty will have _zero_ moral credibility, with your students in the next few years.

You want to see fault and moral failing in this case....look in the mirror, Mr Starn.

At 11:18 PM, July 04, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Response to Andrew Cohen's article.

Andrew Cohen Proves Fools Don’t Always Rush In

After reading Andrew Cohen’s latest tripe suggesting a media “Rush to Duke’s Defense” (June 27th), one cannot but conclude that he has just awoken, bearded like Rip Van Winkle, and sauntered on over to have a looksie at what all this fuss in Durham is about. His base premise, that journalists “are tripping all over themselves to quickly and repetitively report the biased view of the young men’s defense…” when, “[u]sually, reporters breathlessly take everything prosecutors and the police say at face value, often to devastating effect upon criminal defendants,” could not be more uninformed, vacuous, misleading and ironic.

Cohen obviously missed the first month and a half of mainstream media coverage of this hoax. He obviously missed the breathless rush to publish and air every slanderous utterance of D.A. Nifong during his more than 70 press briefings within the first five days of the story breaking into the mainstream press. He obviously missed the breathless rush to convey to a nation Nifong’s “absolute certainty” that these privileged “hooligans” had committed the alleged crime. He obviously missed the breathless rush to report Nifong’s suggestion that the accuser was given a “date rape” drug on the evening in question, despite no blood work having been taken of the accuser at the hospital in the twenty four hours immediately following the alleged event. He obviously missed the breathless rush to televise Nifong physically acting out, with great dramatic flair, the manner in which the accuser was allegedly choked from behind, although she specifically denied having been choked to both the SANE nurse-in-training and the investigating police officer at the hospital. He obviously missed journalists “tripping all over themselves” to report Nifong’s smug dismissal of the importance of DNA results to the strength of his case with the assertion that DNA evidence would not be likely to be found if the attackers used condoms. Turns out that the accuser has specifically denied condom use by her attackers at the time of the alleged event. He obviously missed the repeated airings of the “Wanted Poster,” which referenced both the Durham Police Department and local CrimeStoppers organization, bore the team “mug shots” of 43 white players, and urged them all to “Please Come Forward.” He obviously missed the television footage of lacrosse players entering the Durham Police lab to voluntarily submit their DNA samples. While their heads were covered under advice of counsel to avoid individual identification in media airings, they nonetheless appeared, in the skewed aired snippets, every bit guilty rapists. Cohen obviously missed Nifong’s Blitzkrieg pandering to the black community in advance of his primary election, his suggestion that the players were hiding behind their rich “daddies,” and his vow not to allow “some Duke lacrosse players raping a poor black girl” to be the nation’s impression of Durham. Cohen obviously missed the laughable, if innumerable, media pieces virtually equating the “criminal” team behavior of open-container possessions and public urination with a predisposition to rape.

The mainstream media did in this case exactly what Cohen says it “usually does…to devastating effect upon criminal defendants.” Too bad Cohen missed it.

Only now, as it becomes clearer by the day that the remaining “certainty” regarding Nifong’s Folly is its ultimate dismissal on motion for lack of prima facie proof, is the media “tripping all over themselves” to wipe the egg off their collective faces and get it right.

Michael F. McCusker
Franklin Lakes, New Jersey

At 12:09 PM, July 07, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

In response to Hal Crowther's Sympathy for the Devils? article in the Weekly Independent.

Simply unfathomable

At 1:22 PM, July 07, 2006, Blogger August West said...

Dear Moderator:

Sorry for posting the FA's real name. I merely "cut and pasted" my original piece, and did not think to "self-censor" on the transfer. Thank you for not removing my post entirely for what was merely an error of oversight.

Here is the link to the original NOW article to which I responded:

It had been hyperlinked to the word "crap" in the fourth line of my first paragraph, but the html tag must've been removed by your editing. You have a wonderful site here, with thoughtful, articulate, well-reasoned and incisive posters. I will endeavor to maintain those standards in my own contributions.

At 2:48 PM, July 07, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Resoponse to NOW article entitled "Media Put Accuser on Trial in Duke Rape Case" - Originally published on July 3d, at:

NOW Hear This: Don't be obtuse

On June 15th, NOW Communications Director, Lisa Bennett, and Communications "Intern," Jessica Hopper, actually took joint by-line credit for penning this crap , entitled Media Put Accuser On Trial In Duke Rape Case. With all due respect (and little it is in view of the factual ignorance that these two evince throughout their pontificating whine), um, NO, it didn't. She did. After all, isn't that Precious we're talking about?

Bennett and Hopper initially opine that "[a]nalyzing or commenting on the legal strengths or merits of any case at this stage would be difficult, but what's not hard, and what merits close scrutiny is the media's portrayal of the victim" [emphasis mine]. Go ahead, take your time and re-read it. I had to. For a brief moment I had hope that the piece would go on to validate the premise of the immediately preceding syntactic nightmare and lambaste the media for being "not hard" enough on the false accuser of the Duke 3. Silly me, I forgot to consider the source.

Due to the media's largely collective turnabout, from vilifying these young men without facts in the early weeks of the story, to reporting facts as they began to reach their buzzard-sized brains, it is not difficult at all to analyze or comment on the "strengths and merits" of this case. It has none. The only victims in this pitiable snake oil salesman's sideshow are Reade Seligmann, Collin Finnerty and Dave Evans. What "merits close scrutiny" is the contining, if evaporating, support for Precious based not on facts but race- and gender-fueled bias.

In boldfacing three "common themes" they've "observed" in television coverage of FA, Bennett and Hopper prove themselves a) intellectually deficient, or b) just returned from some faraway place and, thus, excusably uninformed of the facts. First, loyal readers of the NOW newsletter are urged to accept that television's portrayal of the false accuser Promotes Racist and Sexist Stereotypes. The "constant use of the word stripper" to characterize FA when, they say, "she could have as easily been described as 'student' or 'mother'," reinforces the "old stereotype of African American women as hypersexual." Knock it off, you two. Please.

At the time of the party at which she was paid $400.00 to remove her clothes and simulate sex with another woman while writhing on the floor for men who had foolishly paid for the "performance," Precious was not wearing her "student" hat, if any at all, and most definitely not acting as "mother." When she was on the job in the afternoon of March 11th, she was not wearing her "student" hat, if any at all, and most definitely not acting as "mother." When she was on the job at the Millenium Hotel at 5:15 a.m. on March 12th, she was not wearing her "student" hat, if any at all, and most definitely not acting as "mother." When she was hanging out at a hotel with Jarriel Johnson, driver, through the evening of the 12th, waiting to see if "this guy she met" would call, she was not wearing her "student" hat, if any at all, and most definitely not acting as "mother." When she was using a vibrator on herself for the voyeuristic pleasure of a couple, within a day of the Buchanan Street gig, she was not wearing her "student" hat, if any at all, and most definitely not acting as "mother." When she was "performing" for an "elderly gentleman" at the hotel at 11:30 a.m. on the morning of the 13th, she was not wearing her "student" hat, if any at all, and most definitely not acting as "mother." When she was imploring Kim Pittman to return to the lacrosse party, despite the rude behavior of some of its attendees, because she "thought there was more money" to be made, she was not wearing her "student" hat, if any at all, and most definitely not acting as "mother." Face it, the reason Precious has been constantly called a "stripper" by the media is because more apt descriptives might be a bit crass for family viewing. She's a stripper. At least. Whether she is "hypersexual" or merely cash driven and bereft of self-esteem is not known. What is known is that she is constantly called a stripper, at least, not because she is black or female but because her conduct defines the word.

Secondly, Bennett and Hopper conclude that television coverage of the hoax Dismisses Rape and Belittles Survivors.

That's a crock.

With increasing fortitude, talking heads are comfortable dismissing this claim of rape because the facts lead to the inescapable conclusion that the allegation of the hard-working, veteran, collegiate mother of two is incredible as a matter of both law and credulity. When Tucker Carlson takes the President of the North Carolina NAACP to task for holding out Precious as "some sort of modern day civil rights hero," Bennett and Hopper conclude that he has "intentionally or not...set the bar impossibly high for any woman who reports a rape and hopes to be taken seriously." Seriously. Isn't it sadly ironic that Bennett and Hopper cannot, or will not, concede that the lies of this stripper have done more to undermine true rape victims' hopes of being taken seriously than any other singular event in thirty years? Precious is not a feminist heroine. She is not a black heroine. She is, at best, a troubled and tragic soul caught in a maelstrom of her own making from which she cannot now be extricated and, at worst, a calculating, racist opportunist who would consciously flush the lives-in-balance of three innocent men in deference to a self-righteous vengeance for heated words exchanged, or the glint of filthy lucre.

Instead of disassociating NOW from this poison to the struggle of true rape victims, Bennett and Hopper have "discovered" that media dismissal of precious little lies "dismisses the feminist viewpoint in this case." Ridiculous. Bennett and Hopper do not assert the feminist viewpoint. They articulate the head-buried ostrich's viewpoint. I simply refuse to believe that true feminists, who happen also to be truly capable of distinguishing shit from Shinola, are yet espousing the "viewpoint" that Precious was raped. I'm all for female equality. Would that Ms. Ann Thrope view that sentiment in it's purest definitional sense. To yet carry the standard for this false accuser, to yet sing-song the ridiculous mantra that Precious must have been raped merely because she says she was raped, is the penultimate insult to both the wrongly accused and our American system of justice. It is only slightly 1A to the mindset of ignorants who wish for the Duke 3 to "go to jail for life even if they're innocent," as payback for historical persecutions endured by blacks in this country. Didn't somebody once dream of the day when a man would be judged by the content of his character and not by the color of his skin?

Finally, Bennett and Hopper are most disturbed that this case seems, to them, to be covered merely for its Entertainment Value -- but a "movie of the week" characterized by an "insensitive portrayal of the women involved." "By turning a rape case into a story, the reality of rape, and the threat it poses for women, is removed."

The media didn't do that, gals. FA did.

Michael F. McCusker
Franklin Lakes, New Jersey

At 12:02 PM, July 08, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

In response to Andrew Cohen's article in Washington Post

Dear Washington Post:

Andrew Cohen's article "The Media Rush to Defend Duke" clearly demonstrated that Mr. Cohen has not been following the facts of this case very carefully. For his benefit, and yours, I have listed the facts below that Mr. Cohen should consider before penning his next article. I have even included links to make your research easier.

1. She waited to claim rape until she was almost involuntarily admitted to mental hospital.
(note: Alleged Victim "AV" did not claim rape to Kim or to Kroger security guard, only after second officer arrived and tried to remove her from car).

2. There is no dna UNDER her nails or fake nails, yet she claimed she scratched rapists for 30 minutes.

A. No dna found to match Collin anywhere.

B. No dna found to match Reade anywhere.

C. Dna on top of fingernail, consistent w/contamination.

D. Dna found on top of fingernail not a "match."

E. Nail picked up and put into bathroom trash can by resident of house.

3. She claimed she was raped for 30 minutes but time-stamped photos show that is not possible. see ;

4. She didn't follow-up with rape charges made in 1996.

5. She didn't follow-up on 1998 attempted murder charges.

6. She was an escort and had a "boyfriend," and had sex prior to the alleged rape.

A. She admitted to three one-on-ones per week.

B. Only dna found in her belonged to the "boyfriend."

C. Her "driver" says he dropped her off at motels 3,4 times over weekend.

D. She did "vibrator show" for couple at motel same day as lax party.
see (but she only used a "small vibrator")

7. Her claim that she was 100% certain of Reade's identity as a rapist.

A. Identification came 3 weeks after the party.

B. She was "passed out drunk" shortly after the party.
see (first officer on scene's radio dispatch).

C. Reade has an air-tight alibi.
see (items & pictures reviewed by ABC).

8. She identified 4 people as her 3 attackers.
see (identified 4 attackers);

9. She identified a person with a mustache as an attacker.

A. Evans was only identified at 90% certainty.

B. Evans did not have a mustache that day.

10. Her 100% id of Reade creates doubt about her id of Collin & Dave.

11. The nail polish on the stairway is evidence she polished her nails in the bathroom.
see ;
see (reports of nail polish on bannister).

12. The coincidences involved with the 1996 rape accusation.

A. 3 attackers.
see ;

B. Had threats to her life.

C. She claims rape occurred for long time ("continual period").
see ;

D. Even her father claims the 1993 charges were false.
see (her father: "rape didn't happen").

E. Rape AND beating occurred.
see ;

13. Duke hospital and police station were much closer than Krogers.

14. Kim Roberts initially stated that a rape probably did not occur, calling it a "crock."
see (And she "will never" say a rape occurred).

15. The "broom claim" changes her story, and makes her account look fishy.
see ("she told me" afterwards because she was embarrassed).

16. She went back into the house.
see ;
see (12:30 photo shows her going back into house)

A. Could have called her father or "boyfriend" to retrieve items.

B. Reade was long gone.

17. Reports of her vacillating about continuing with the case.
see ;

18. Seligmann's alibi.

A. Telephone calls to girlfriend. see

B. Other telephone calls. see

C. Telephone call to cab company. see

D. Affidavit of cab driver. see

E. ATM receipt. see

F. ATM photos. see

G. Fast food receipt.

H. Dorm card swipe record. see

I. Affidavit of other cab passenger. see

J. Testimony of 40+ guys that he did not rape her. see

19. The photo identification procedures were beyond suggestive.

A. Only Duke lax players included. see

B. She was told that only people at party were in lineup.

C. Lineup occurred 3 weeks after alleged rape.
see ("three weeks after….).

D. She starts identifying people only after the proctor changes his procedures.

E. She identifies 3 of first 7 of 46 photos.

F. Lineup doesn't follow law enforcement policy

G. AV had at least TWO practice lineups during which she failed to pick anyone.

20. The family is in talks with a civil attorney, suggesting a financial motive.

21. Alleged victim appears to be smiling in picture taken after alleged rape.

22. She initially identified "Adam," "Bret," and "Matt."

A. She claims they were fictitious names.

B. It comes out later that there are people on the team with those names.
see (three Matt's, a Bret and an Adam on the team).

C. Who would use "fictitious" names of real people. (common sense)

D. She identified one of the above as "Dan" as others called him "Dan."

E. She did not pick out a Dan, Adam, Bret or Matt in photo lineup.

23. Supposed rapists left her fingernails, makeup bag and cell phone in the house for 2 days.
see ;
see (return of search warrant showing fingernails, makeup bag & cell phone found on March 16, 2006).

24. Kim Roberts called 911 and said no one was hurt, AV didn't correct her.

25. Her prior criminal record. see

A. Theft conviction admissible for impeachment. see (noting her 2002 misdemeanor convictions);
see (larceny conviction).

B. Pattern of "hiding" or loss of reality in stress situations. See Abrams Report 5/23/06 (AV failed to respond to ammonia - acted passed out);
see ;
see ("running scared").

26. Accused have no admissible criminal convictions.
see (CF free "pending … trial" in D.C. case; no conviction, no impeachment).

27. Three big guys and alleged victim were supposed to fit into a tiny bathroom for 30 minutes. (common sense).

28. None of the other players have stepped up to claim a rape could have occurred.

29. The presumption of innocence. See United States Constitution, Bill of Rights, case law.

30. The burden on the prosecution to prove a crime beyond a reasonable doubt. See id.

31. No usable DNA after supposed 30 minute violent rape.

32. Natural belief that at least one player would step forward if anything happened.

33. Claim that alleged victim was raped by 20 players, then 2, then 3. see
see (then go to pdf file).

34. Must have denied other sex, as boyfriend wasn't "swabbed" until May 3, 2006.

35. Didn't admit "boyfriend" sex to SANE/LE/Nifong.

36. Time-stamped pictures show bruising and cuts occurred before "rape."

37. Nifong politically motivated to win election, appease AA's.
see (Nifong was "center of the media storm"); see (study shows "black vote aided Nifong"); see (in March alone 50 interviews, 12 live tv appearances).

38. LE/DA missteps.

A. Not searching 610 Buchanan for 2 days. see (note date of search warrant of 3/16/06)

B. Warrant-less search of Edens Dorm. see (where CF & RS lived).

C. Indicting w/o DNA. see (go to "Events Timeline" April 17 indictments of CF & RS; no DNA at all until May 11).

D. Favorable bond treatment for Roberts.
see ;
see ("relieve[d] Kim of paying bail bond fees").

E. Favorable plea for alleged victim's 2002 arrest.
see ; see

F. Arrest of Cabbie. see

G. Revocation of probation of other lax players.
see ;
see .

H. Failure to turn over alleged victim's cellphone.

I. Nifong indicating date rape drug knowing no toxicology was done.
see ;

J. DA inciting anger in AA community & liberal college community.
see (70 interviews) ;
see (NBPP marching) ;
see (calling lax players "hooligans")

K. DA's failure to meet w/Defense attorneys.
see ("Nifong hasn't seen their evidence") ; see (offered time-stamped pictures to Nifong)

L. DA's ordering media to stay off public floor of county building.

M. Other ethical violations/mistakes.
see (waiting more than month to search CF's dorm room, 2 weeks after identification);
see (DA talked to NBPP but not defense attorneys); see (Nifong failed to meet w/defense, look at evidence); see (Evans found guilty of EXACT same noise violation Flannery found innocent of). see (DA had little or no evidence with which to indict)

39. Picture of alleged victim shows her w/purse & makeup bag AFTER alleged rape, although she claims to have fled scene immediately after rape w/o them.

40. She allowed herself to be helped into car by lax player after supposed 30 minute violent rape by lax players.

41. Kroger security guard and first police officer on scene said she didn't look raped.
see ;
see (officer said she looks drunk but fine).

42. Originally claimed 0 rapists, then 15-20 rapists, then 0 rapists, then 3 rapists.

43. SANE report shows no bleeding, abrasions or cuts, even though AV claimed to have experienced bleeding over last 2 weeks.

44. Alleged victim declined toxicology testing, indicating usage of alcohol/drugs.

45. AV gave the hospital 3 potential sexual partners besides alleged rapists.

46. AV supposedly had sex with a couple of "drivers" during the weekend.

47. Duke lacrosse player took and passed polygraph.

48. Duke lacrosse players have been consistent in their story.

49. Large gap in time from alleged rape until first report of rape.
see ("Something happened in the interim")

50. AV claimed Kim was in bathroom during rape. Kim called that a "crock."

51. Police reports show that AV claimed she was groped on lawn and not raped, then raped, then the number of rapists began to change.

52. Claim that Kim Roberts actually HELPED with the rape!

53. AV is supposedly bi-polar and manic/depressive.
see (AV's mother admits she had week-long stay for "nervous breakdown") ;
see (father says she is "struggling with her nerves")

54. AV told doctor she had been drinking and on Flexeril (muscle relaxant).

55. AV's press-on fingernails already off in pictures of her dancing.

Thank you for considering these facts.

At 3:32 PM, July 08, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

In response to the previous post -- bravo! You've certainly done more homework than the prosecutor or DA in this case. To your fine list I would add the information provided by CF's parents in an interview with Dan Abrams last week that reflects his alibi witnesses, restaurant receipts and dorm swipe, all of which put him with other individuals away from North Buchanan during the time of the alleged incident and make it physically impossible for him (like RS) to have committed the alleged crime. Still more exculpatory evidence that Nifong was evidently not interested in seeing because it would interfere with his persecution of three innocent individuals.

At 6:48 PM, July 08, 2006, Blogger Randy said...

I have traveled to Charlotte, NC every weekend for the past 6 weeks to visit my hospitalized mother. In response to inquiries about where I live I have changed my answer from Durham to Hillsborough. I may be a bumkin, but why advertise it.

At 10:10 AM, July 09, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

In response to Orin Starn's opinion "Let's talk sports"

Jealous of the coach?

Just what is it that Duke Professor Orin Starn has against Duke men's basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski?
In a July 2 Point of View article, Starn presumed to discuss the role of college athletics -- but targeted Coach K personally. Coach K had chosen not to comment publicly on the lacrosse controversy until confronted with it recently at a press conference. Whereupon Starn pounced on and negatively analyzed his every comment.

From the curmudgeonly tone of Starn's articles, one can only conclude that he is resentful or even jealous of Coach K's great respect and standing at Duke, in the community and the entire sports world.

Ruby M. Hinson
July 9, 2006

At 10:26 AM, July 09, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

There are many good, well articulated, and informative articles here. But, I found the post dated 12:02 pm July 8 (2 or 3 above) responding to the Andrew Cohen article "The Media Rush to Defend Duke" to be totally wonderful. It must have taken the author a long time, not to mention a lot of effort, to prepare this response. It was well worth it, I enjoyed and learned at the same time as I read it. I hope Washington Post published this, although I doubt they would.

At 8:12 PM, July 10, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"On June 15th, NOW Communications Director, Lisa Bennett, and Communications "Intern," Jessica Hopper, actually took joint by-line credit for penning this c*#p , entitled Media Put Accuser On Trial In Duke Rape Case."

I look forward to seeing the response of NOW and Lisa Bennet the the allegations of rape of an 11 year old white child by 10 black college football players in Fresno California as reported by AP on July 10, 2006.

At 8:24 PM, July 10, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Every time my college calls or writes me asking for donations I reply "I will send a donation when you stop discrimination against whites in your admission policies."

White Duke alumni need to realize that Duke is an anti-white racist institution and never, never again give a cent to Duke.

What Duke did to the Lacrosse team they will do to your sons if any false accusations are ever made.

But if you send your daughters to Duke guess what the official Duke response will be if she is ever raped by a black Duke student or Durham thug.

Marches and prayer vigils in favor of the accused. Refusal of the Da's office to prosecute. Vicious treatment of the white victim by the mostly black PD and investigators employed by Durham through affirmative action privilege.

The Women's studies department will reverse their position on rape and join the African American studies and other liberal arts departments in exonerating the rapists.

There will be readings of
"To Kill a Mockingbird", "Soul on Ice," "Of Mice and Men," and "Sanctuary" blasted throughout the campus every lunch hour.

Brodhead will issue statements: innocent till proven guilty, rush to judgement, he said she said, the legacy of slavery, reparations, the victim is a racist.

Duke and Durham are not save for whites, especially with the black thug community of Durham and the anti white liberal arts profesors publicly humiliated by the way this case has blown up in their faces.

They are twice as vicious now, and looking for the next white scapegoat.

At 2:06 PM, July 12, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Response to Andrew Cohen's, "the Media Rush to Duke's Defense"
I am appalled to read Andrew Cohen's article, "The Media Rush to Duke's Defense." Does it occur to Mr. Cohen that the members of the media now "defending" Duke, many of whom were quick early on to accept Nifong's prejudicial comments about the case, have now actually investigated the story and are giving a balanced, factual report? What possible motivation would these liberal reporters have for reversing their initial positions? While none of us know all the "facts" in the case, certain truths have emerged: there are serious issues with the alleged victim's credibility as well as her sobriety and coherence at the time her statements were made; there are serious issues with the way the case was "investigated" and with the evidence, including a flawed and prejudicial line-up and the absence of any incriminating forensic evidence; and the DA took a very public stand on the case without investigating or even considering potentially exculpatory evidence offered up by those he would indict. In addition, it appears the DA did not even take the time, before publicly declaring a crime had been committed, to evaluate the credibility or the relevant history of the accuser--something that one would think would be very important in a "she-said, he-said" case, AND the DA made significant, and again prejudicial, statements that now appear to be contradicted by both the evidence and the accuser.

If these charges are false, then three young men and their families have suffered a grave injustice--an injustice that our system, and every DA in America, is supposed to do its best to prevent. Is the press supposed to stay silent if the available evidence suggests such an injustice has occurred? And shouldn't Andrew Cohen also have a responsibility to do a thorough, unbiased investigation before he rushes to judgment?

At 9:59 PM, July 12, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I sent this email to Henri E. Cauvin, editor of the Washington Post today as a follow-up to his story about the Finnerty DC conviction,

To: Henri E. Cauvin
Subj: Duke Lacrosse Case
Date: July 12, 2006

I read your article about the results of Mr. Finnerty's DC trial. As the editor of a well regarded newspaper, do you not find it ironic that the same day he was found guilty, the Police Chief of Washington, DC declared a crime emergency? Legal resources are a precious commodity. The trial used up the resources of one superior court judge and two assistant district attorneys. And in our nation's capital no less. And all for what purpose? If we tried every young man for a silly fight, with some verbal threats and shadow boxing and put them in prison, there would not be enough room for the murderers, rapists, child molestor and armed robbers in prison.

The young men deserved to be sent to the principals office and grounded for a month by their parents.

At 10:40 AM, July 13, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

While I am mindful of the fact that Susan Estrich is a rape survivor, it continues to amaze me that as an intellegent attorney she has such blinders on when it comes to this case. How can she not realize that advancing false allegations of rape will set things back for real rape victims like the 11-year old girl in the Fresno case? Forget her age -- how could those guys not realize that 10 guys having sex with one person is NOT morally acceptable. Yet Susan Estrich continues to equate the two situations, even though the facts are like apples and oranges. Mind-boggling, until you focus on the fact that she, like Nifong, has so over-identified with the FA in this case that she can no longer be objective about the lack of any evidence, other than evidence of a false charge.

At 3:24 PM, July 13, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Response sent to Susan Estritch regarding "Another Team Rape"

Dear Ms. Estritch,
I am shocked that you would compare the Fresno situation to the Duke Lacrosse case. Please do some research--these two cases are nothing alike!!! The three Duke captains DID talk to police in the days following the initial accusation--they gave voluntary statements, submitted DNA, offered to take polygraphs, and helped the police gather evidence from their bathroom--evidence they surely would have discarded had they believed a rape had occurred in that bathroom! All the Duke players have insisted, from day one, that not only did no rape occur, but that absolutely NO SEX OCCURRED--a claim their lawyers would never have allowed them to make if they had the slightest suspicion that ANYTHING, consensual or not, had occurred. The accuser's story in the Duke case is not only terribly inconsistent, but her credibility is totally lacking given her history of making accusations and her behavior in the hours before she alleged a rape occurred. Her credibility would not be such an issue (afterall, women lacking credibility can in fact be raped) were there ANY evidence from the scene to support her accusations--but there is none.

Ignoring the facts in the Duke case does nothing to help YOUR credibility, nor does it help future REAL rape victims. In fact, given what I have seen in the Duke case, I, who have always assumed that "no woman would make up a rape," am inclined to hold judgment on the Fresno case until all the facts come out. And, by the way, it is not the conservatives who are defending the Duke players--it's those who have done the research.

At 5:24 PM, July 13, 2006, Blogger Alaska 2007 said...

Susan –

I do not understand the point of your article.
First of all, the title, “Another Team Rape” is confusing. I understand that the Fresno football team is involved in an alleged rape, but which team is the other team? It seems that you might be referring to a Duke lacrosse team rape. I know there is an ALLEDGED Duke lacrosse team rape. But, since there seems to be no evidence indicating that a rape took place, other than the word of the alleged “victim,” that can not be the team you mean. So, who is it?
You mention that the members of the Fresno team gave statements to the police without legal support. And you imply that the Duke lacrosse team members did not. You obviously have not been following the Duke “Alleged” Rape Case very closely. If you had, you would know that the Duke players did give statements to the police; the captains gave it voluntarily before having legal representation. They even participated in identifying those who attended the party, gave DNA swabs, helped collect evidence from the house where the party took place and volunteered to take polygraph tests. So, again, it must NOT be the Duke lacrosse team you are referring to. So which team is it?
And then at the end of your article you ask,

“How many stories like this have to happen, how many teams have to go down, how many chances have to go up in smoke, first?
In that respect, it is like Duke, only these boys will pay and pay.”

Once again you are referring to teams and it seems one of them is Duke; but you say “only [the Fresno boys] will pay and pay.” Unfortunately, I have to conclude that you are MISTAKENLY referring to the Duke team in this article. Since that is the case, you must know that the WRONGFULLY indicted Duke boys have already begun to pay and pay.

At 7:07 PM, July 13, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

In response to Marc Fisher's Washington Post article.

I had the pleasure of reading your article today entitled "Wolves in Blazers and Khakis".

Let me begin with some questions. Are you are parent? If so, do you have a son, perhaps between the ages of 14-22? If so, how would you have your son dress for a day in court? Given the summer heat, would you suggest he dress for the occasion in a t-shirt and flip-flops? Or would you have him dress out of respect for the court and the judge in what items are most prominent in his wardrobe, namely a blazer and khakis?

I found your article highly insulting. Is the most important thing that you took from going to court their appearance. And to call people "Wolves". Is that journalism at its best?

Mr. Fisher, I suggest you re-read your article. You contradicted yourself. You were right the first time when you said "a garden variety crime that gets churned out here like beer cans rolling through a Budweiser plant". You said "If you hit a stranger on the streets of Georgetown, the court system generally requests that you do not do this again and sends you on your way". You also said "You could sit through this two-day trial and be appalled that the kind of case that ordinarily gets done in an hour takes up about a dozen times more resources--two prosecutors and a supervisor!--and time simply because of the defendant's notoriety, celebrity and money". You just told us why 2 days of legal resources were wasted. Isn't everyone supposed to be treated equally under the law?

Mr. Fisher as a metro columnist of the Washington Post, why not write about the real crime in Washington DC next? Have you conveniently forgotten Police Chief Ramsey declared a crime emergency in the city the same day Mr. Finnerty was convicted? Why don't you write about why a mother of young children who are learning about Washington DC in school refuses to take her children to visit because it is so crime ridden. Thirteen murders since 7/1/06. That is a disgrace in our nation's capital. Why not write about real crime next time?

J. C.
Garden City, NY

At 4:10 PM, July 18, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

In further response to Marc Fisher's Washington Post Article:

Sug: Re; Message via Washington Wolves in Blazers
Date: 7/17/2006

Thank you for your note. I'm certain you received a number of responses to your article and you were kind to respond.

I am glad to hear you are a parent and have a teenager. She must be the "perfect child". My children are still young, but unfortunately they are not perfect. I guess they take after me. I try to be a good role model for them. I don't smoke, use drugs or drink (well maybe a couple of times a year) and I attend church each week. Despite my attempts to be a good influence on them, they still get in their fair share of mischief. There are lots of outside influences, whether on the school bus, playground, violence on TV or when they get older on college campuses. Unfortunately for our children, the age of innocence ended for them a long time ago. I can't tell you the number of times I have been in the embarrassing position of having to apologize for my children's behavior or actions. As their parent, I am morally responsbile for them and as you know, we are legally responsible for our children's actions until the age of 18.

So just as a parent comforts a crying child who has fallen off a bicycle and has a bruised knee, we need to be there to support them when they get older and have bigger problems. That might mean we need to hire an attorney to represent them. Does that make us arrogant? I think not.

I have a son and a daughter. When they go off to college one day, I will kiss them goodbye, cross my fingers and hold my breath. I'll be worrying about real dangers like drugs, alcohol, drinking and driving and real crimes like date rate and other horrible things.

I do not mean to make this personal, but Mr. Fisher if your daughter ever stumbles along the way, I wonder if you will be prepared to deal with it. You will probably be in shock. But believe me, you will have plenty of company. In the meantime, please try to have a little compassion for others. Remember there are many victims, including parents and innocent siblings.

So, congratualatioins on having the perfect child and being the pefect man. Funny thing is the only other perfect man I ever knew of died over 2000 years ago.


P.S. Please consider writig an article contrasting the Finnerty and Shick cases. David Shick was a junior at Georgetown and a graduate of Delbarton. Both cases involved student drinking, although Shick was on the Geortown campus. In the Gerogtown case, Shick was hit in the head, fell an died several days later. The coroner called it a homicide. The prosector decided not to prosecute. The student from Georgetown was never suspended and had to write a "reflection paper". Same city just a few years apart, but very different results.

At 12:52 PM, July 19, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

In response to J. Stevenson’s Herald Sun article entitled Attorneys Infuriated by DA's remarks published on July 18.


Thank you and the Herald-Sun for your factual article "Attorneys Infuriated by DA's remarks" and for it's placement in the newspaper.

As I watched and listened to Mondays hearings, I could not believe my ears when Mr. Nifong boldly stated "It looked sometimes over the course of the last few months that some of these attorneys were almost disappointed that their clients didn't get indicted so they could be a part of this spectacle here in Durham." I mean no disrespect to the judge assigned to the case, but it made me wonder was Judge Titus asleep at the bench when these words came out of the prosecutor's mouth? The attorneys were gentlemen not to respond to these words in the court room.

Yes, unfortunately there is a spectacle in Durham. No right to a speedy trial. Prosecutors who refuse to meet with defense counsel to review exculpatory evidence. DA's leading the investigation. The Chief of Police MIA during a high profile case. Line-ups that do not conform to NC guidelines. Intimidating witnesses and arresting them on old warrants. It makes one wonder, is Durham still part of the USA?


At 8:10 AM, July 20, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

In response to Herald Sun Editor Bob Ashley's June 16th editorial "Can athletics, academics at Duke coexist?"

Herald-Sun, The (Durham, NC)
July 17, 2006
Academics, athletics can coexist at Duke University
Author: G. HOLMAN KING Guest Columnist

Certainly, the place of athletics in the academic setting is an appropriate subject for debate at any time. A university must continually examine itself to ensure that its programs provide the appropriate balance for a well-rounded education. And, as Editor Bob Ashley noted in a recent column, Duke has been more successful than most in this regard.

Even so, to an interested but distant observer, it appears that the Duke administration and a substantial minority of the Duke faculty have already had that debate and come to the conclusion that student-athletes have no place at Duke.

The initial statements of President Brodhead and veeps John Burness, Trask and Wasiolek all revealed a clear bias against athletes as they heaped blanket condemnation on the whole lacrosse team and its coach. This was before they had any substantive understanding of the facts of the situation. Professors Paul Haagen, Houston Baker Jr., Orin Starn and the Duke 88 showed their deep-seated animosity as they piled on in a rush to judgment.

Some lacrosse players reported being harassed in class by their professors, although those incidents appear to have been isolated. Brodhead then turned to an anti-athletics activist to review his actions. And now, Professor Starn has launched an editorial offensive against Duke's basketball coach. Together, these actions send the unmistakable signal that the administration and a significant portion of the faculty are unfriendly, if not downright hostile, toward student-athletes.

This signal does not go unnoticed by parents, coaches, advisers and counselors of prospective Duke student-athletes. Many of the lacrosse players, and I suspect many of the other student-athletes at Duke are academically qualified and financially able to attend other top ranked universities in our nation. I know one such player who chose Duke rather than any other respected university because of the strong lacrosse program that Coach Mike Pressler had built. I suspect that many of the current student-athletes at Duke are there because they can get a outstanding education and participate in a sport they love, even though they may be paying full tuition for the privilege. Although its schools are outstanding and highly respected, Duke does not hold a monopoly on academic excellence. Given the impression that the academic environment at Duke does not accept them will, in my opinion, cause prospective student-athletes and those around them to have serious doubts about choosing Duke.

At this point, I believe it will take a strong counter-message from the Duke Board of Directors, administration and faculty to neutralize the anti-athletic signal that has been telegraphed. Unless this happens, the robust pipeline of quality student-athlete candidates may slowly dry up and the debate will be moot-the anti advocates will have won by default. Duke will then be like the Yale and Harvard the antis seek to emulate.

It would be unfortunate for Duke to lose the balance between athletics and academics it has so carefully and successfully achieved.

G. Holman King of Granbury, Texas, is a proud Duke lacrosse grandparent.

At 11:29 PM, July 22, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sent to Marc Fisher
Author of Wolves in Khakis and Blazers

Re: Wral "Durham Police Begin Probe of Alleged Assault at Raleigh Bar"

Since you were kind enough to communicate with me, I thought I would return the favor. Have you seen the latest article about "Durham Officer Investigated for possible assault". The officers are Sgt. Gottlieb and Inspector Clayton of the infamous Duke Lacrosse Case. This assault occured late at night at a sports bar in Raleigh. Racial slurs were spoken. The victim was surrounded and overpowered. Someone threw a punch and missed, and someone else kicked him in the head during the assault. The 29 year old victim was left with minor cuts and bruises. This sounds so similar to the Collin Finnerty story you wrote about and the inapppropriate behaviors of Finnerty and his friends. Only in this case, it was Law Enforcement officers performing the assault. Exactly what do you think should be the punishment for this crime?


At 10:39 AM, July 23, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Re the previous post -- I wonder if Mr. Fisher will comment on the cops' choice of clothing if and when they ever make a court appearance on this matter?

At 6:35 PM, July 24, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I received an email back from Marc Fisher of the Washington Post. He wrote that law enforcement officers should be held to a higher standard and if found guilty lose their jobs and face the maximum penalty under the law.

I emailed this back to Mr. Fisher:

Thank you for your quick response. I agree with you 100%. May I suggest a title for your next article "Wolves in Police Uniforms".

Have a good summer.


At 8:56 PM, July 24, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

JC: Thanks for your above messages. They are quite informative. I like your suggestion for Mr. Fisher's next title. Let us see if he will follow it up.

At 1:26 PM, July 25, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

In respose to Bob Ashley's article in Herald Sun "Has the lacrosse case induced insanity?" dated July 23, 2006.

Here's my reply to Ashley:

"Look, I don't know what happened at that house that night. And neither do you. And I wouldn't have done some of the things the prosecutor has done to this point -- he started the media onslaught, after all. And neither probably would you. It is possible that a savage rape occurred. And it is possible that the young men who have been accused are victims, themselves, of an irresponsible accuser. The point is that we don't know. We haven't seen all the evidence, haven't examined all of the testimony, haven't had the privilege of seeing the case unfold at trial the way it is supposed".

Mr. Ashley, I read your words this Sunday morning and I reflect how smug, how easy it is to quote your fellow partner in comfortable detachment, Andrew Cohen, as you both write about this case. Of course, any reasonable person should find no fault with your words but for one glaring exception.Those words, that path you advise...require trust.

You are asking us to trust that Mr. Nifong is an honorable man. For many of us outside of Durham who did not attend his political coffees or get invited to his barbeques, we are left to judge the man by his actions, his words. Night after long night last Spring, Nifong appeared on our TV screen doing choke holds, talking about condoms, date rape drugs, and initially proclaiming DNA would "clear the innocent,"

We judge him now by what we read in sworn court documents. We judge him now by observing the date on the subpoena for the DNA testing which claims anal, oral, and vaginal rape...but actually PRECEDES the receipt of that information by his office.

We judge him by the fact that he refused to look at any exculpatory evidence thay might undermine this desparately needed and desired campaign agenda.

We judge him by highly inflammatory statements that emphasized the racial aspect of this case...that damaged the players chance to a fair trial while enhancing his own selfish political aims.

We judge him by his sarcastic, unprofessional and inappropriate comments offered in the courtroom, that stunningly have gone unchecked by either judge

Yes, Nifong may announce at trial that the Pope was behind the shower curtain and will testify for the prosecution, but, even given THAT...this despicable past conduct would prevent any trust in this man, in his words, in his "integrity" or in his potential conduct. (I personally would need to call the Vatican)

Tell us how to trust this Nifong now? Knowing the accuser's credibility would be key, he should have protected his own. HE DID NOT. How do we trust? You answer this, Mr. Ashley, and perhaps I can give your column higher marks.

You are also asking us to trust the Durham police department. It is a fact that they conducted, in violation of standard North Carolina practices., multiple line-ups with only Lacrosse players. It is a fact that the accuser was told ONLY lacrosse players were in the line-up. She was given a multiple choice test with no wrong answers, but you ask us to be confident that this investigation is ethical.

You ask us to trust the Durham police department when it is a fact that the two detectives on the Duke case, Mr.Gottlieb and his cohort Mr. Clayton arrested the taxi driver on an old warrant, asked him if he had anything "new" to tell them about the rape case... and yet let the Chief's daughter gad about with her own old warrants unserved for months.

You ask us to trust the City Manager Patrick Baker is unbiased in this matter. We observed his news conference where he denied the accuser told multiple stories. He said he was monitoring the situation closely. The city council crowned Baker with their unanimous acclaim. We now read sworn court documents that refute Mr. Baker's word. You ask us to trust he, too, has no dog in this race.

You are asking us to trust that the two local papers wil provide unbiased coverage of this story to ensure an untainted jury. "We know you know" that is essential to a fair trial. But many have read the coverage from both papers since the start, and see an apparent hesitancy to take on troubling questions about the accuser, local "escort services, prostitution arrest statistics, and/or possible corruption in high places. These questions dominate the blogs. After your zeal to report every negative detail about the team, your tentative reporting now is odd.

WE have seen this weekend alone, the MySpace ad of the ADA in this case who graduated from the same high school with the accuser. We have seen his affinity for MILF (which I had to look up to comprehend) and we have seen his "modeling shots". This is a professional on Mr. Nifong's team adjudicating deadly serious matters. You ask us to trust this man's judgement.

We have read accounts in your paper and others of the suspension of the two detectives on this case for their involvement in a racially charged brawl with an AA cook. We have noticed subsequent ethnic cleasing of the reporting to delete the racial aspects.... the exchanging of racial slurs.

So, Sir, you ask us to trust. Just let this go to trial, you say, and justice will be served. Tell me, Mr. Ashley, could you trust the fate of your own son to this sorry alliance. Would you put him in their hands, unchecked, and sleep at night content in their fairness, their integrity, their desire for jusice against their own personal agendas? That is the KEY question here!

Would you trust this cast of Durham characters to provide a judge, a jury WHO WILL BE FAIR? Or will Nifong "judge shop "and sit an OJ jury that reads Cash Michaels' drivel and is eager to convict no matter what the evidence. The comment of that NCCU student resonates again "Because of the past, these guys should go to jail whether they are innocent or not."

Dear God, you ask us to trust.

How easy for you this Sunday morning, with your own loved ones untouched by a travesty like imagine they could never find themselves in a nightmare like this. That one night your own son might not do the stupid thing and attend a party like this. That an allegation alone might not spin him into a nightmare abyss. I'm sure, once upon a time, the Evans, the Finnerty's, and the Seligmann's thought this way too.

How easy for you to eat your Cheerios and turn your attention to the Sports Page and shrug,,,hey, let the trial play out. But, take heed, Mr. Ashley, when good people tolerate injustice, it tends to grow. Do you and those you love live under the purview of the major players in this case. Late at night, do you ever worry a bit...just a little bit...could you be Nifonged next?

Joan Foster

At 1:30 PM, July 25, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

In respose to Bob Ashley's article in Herald Sun "Has the lacrosse case induced insanity?" dated July 23, 2006.

Court TV Will Have the Answer by Robert KC Johnson

At 2:17 PM, July 25, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

In response to Orin Starn's Newsobserver article "Let's talk sports" published on July 2, 2006.

Duke lacrosse: Triangle media still spin for Nifong July 5 - Lead and Gold

At 6:12 PM, July 27, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I love KC Johnson's latest find ( -- I can't believe nobody came up with it before. It would have been great to have confronted Nifong with his own lofty thoughts about justice and integrity when he was still in front of the microphone/camera dissembling for the masses.

The guy definitely has a screw loose, and he certainly doesn't lack for "self-confidence"! I think he's coming unglued -- he seems to have left the world of reality behind and entered some parallel universe where he is the self-annointed savior, judge, jury and executioner.

He is truly a frightening man because he's fundamentally irrational, and you can't argue with a crazy person.

At 11:11 AM, July 29, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Moved from another part of the site

Joseph DiBona, PHD, Associate Professor at Duke wrote:

“Duke University President Brodhead has made the most unfortunate error of his life by reinstating the lacrosse team and as a consequence should resign his office. … The question I would put to President Brodhead is, Why are you still clinging to a job you obviously cannot handle?”

As part of his argument he states:
“…and here he suddenly chooses to ignore the forthcoming jury trial. In other words, it no longer matters whether the team will be found guilty or innocent.”

This is clearly a case where PHD stands for Piled Higher and Deeper. Since when is the TEAM on trial? Will the TEAM be found guilty or innocent? Here is another (Associate) Professor at Duke that has turned his back on the whole team. By his logic, the whole University should be closed down. The three (innocent!) young men are on the lacrosse team, so shut the team down. Well, the team is part of Duke University, so take it to DiBona’s next logical step – close the University. I have a better idea, instead of Brodhead stepping down,
why doesn’t DiBona step down?


At 12:38 AM, August 01, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

In response to Bob Ashley's article entitled "Has the lacrosse case induced insanity?" published in Herald Sun on July 23, 2006

See the link below for a response from John in Carolina.

Letter to Durham H-S Editor Ashley

At 2:23 PM, August 05, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Above I think that everyone at Duke should step down. Ha. they forced out the only coach they guy's have known, and trusted. Now Borehead? and his staff should go in my opion. If you read the newsweek atrical from june 29. you will see in it, one of the professors, who by the way one of the Duke three would have been or already has taken his class, said in black and white that the only reason the lacrosses team takes his course is because they sign in and leave. Well maybe if that professor had better control of the class that would not happen. He went on the say but not in so many words that he did not believe the lacrosse team at all.

At 4:54 PM, August 12, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

In response to the Dennis Rogers article in Newsobserver "Lacrosse is just not my game".

The N&O's Rogers: "I'm Not Smart Enough"
August 12, 2006

At 11:52 AM, August 14, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

In Response to Ted Vaden's remarks/corrections on the Joseph Neff article in Newsobserver

Mr. Vaden:

Yes, there was an error in Mr. Neff’s article in the News Observer and that indeed had a mild impact on the credibility of the article. But upon closer inspection, the error actually substantiates Neff’s point that Nifong acted with a self-serving impulsiveness that has been destructive on many levels. Much like President Broadhead, you have failed to support a bright, determined member of your institution because he made an error unrelated to the bigger picture.

Shame on Broadhead for not standing behind his students when it counted most. Shame on you for your inability to stand behind the real story in the lacrosse case.

Dean Parker

At 2:43 PM, August 18, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

My response to Ruth Sheehan's article "Star of a Blogger Drama" NewsObserver 8/17/06


Warning! With Duke classes ready to resume, if you need a cab, you may have a longer wait for On Time Taxi. Seems Mr. Elmostafa has been busy these days spending a lot of time in court,courtesy of DA Mike Nifong.

Thank you Ruth. Finally, someone is focusing on poor Mr. Elmostafa, a hard working cab driver, caught in the crossfire of a high profile case, who happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time (or an an alibi witness for Reade Seligmann the right place at the right time).

Now that charges against Elmostafa have been reduced to aiding and abetting, the state must prove he knew the passenger had criminal intent. All for an incident in 9/03 involving the theft of $250 of purses, where the thief was found guity and the cabbie helped security track down the thief. Given the murder and homocide rates in Durham, one would think law enforcement, prosecutors and the courts would have other priorities. Mr. Elmostafa had a clean record, while the thief, a career criminal has been arrested 127 times! This reeks of another attempt to intimidate and cast doubt on the credibility of a potential witness.

Police Chief Chalmers is quoted on the Durham Police website "Everyday
good things are happening in Durham." Perhaps it should be changed to "Don't let the facts of the case stop you from screwing the good guys!"

J. Collins

At 10:07 PM, August 22, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

John Schwade is a psychologist at a state prison?! I wonder about his ability to interact with some of the inmates as he is so utterly convinced of the nobility of the prosecution in this case as to be incapable of being objective about the significant evidence of innocence here. Maybe he finds it easier to deal with patients who are a captive audience -- they don't have the same latitude to disagree with him as the allegedly nefarious FODU, who he completely mischaracterizes and misrepresents in his rambling defense of Nifong.

At 6:54 PM, August 23, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Movded from another part of the site:

In the 8-12-06 H-S Letters to the Editor: Paper Disappoints

Thankfully I visited the Web site of the Raleigh News & Observer on Sunday. Otherwise, I may not have read the most thorough and insightful update of the overall events regarding the Duke lacrosse trial that I've read since the incident became public in March. I've subscribed to The Herald-Sun for a decade, but was sincerely discouraged that I had to turn to Raleigh's newspaper to remain informed regarding the most contentious incident that's occurred in Durham since I've lived here.

August 12, 2006

At 5:19 PM, August 26, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

In response to John Schwade's August 5th dated article in News and Observer: "By staying on the sidelines, Cheek shows no bravado "

by Jason Trumpbour
Friends of Duke University

In a recent opinion piece in this newspaper, John Schwade weakly defends Durham District Attorney Michael Nifong’s handling of the Duke lacrosse case. Schwade can find little positive to say about Nifong. Instead, he devotes most of his efforts to personally attacking Nifong’s critics, among them Lewis Cheek and the organization I represent, the Friends of Duke University. Cheek he dismisses with ridicule. As for FODU, Schwade borrows a page from Nifong and attempts to exploit or create prejudice within the community by using unfair caricatures. He compares us to the mafia and darkly suggests we are using “money”, “influence,” and “friends in the national media” to disrupt Nifong’s prosecution. Our sinister agenda that he finds so threatening: “to ensure that these three Duke students receive justice through a fair process.”

Far from some criminal underworld and hardly rich or influential, we are a group of alumni and parents who are deeply concerned about what is happening to three members of the Duke Community. We want to see justice served, not frustrated. I myself am a former attorney in the Criminal Appeals Division of the Maryland Attorney General’s office. I now teach law, jurisprudence and legal practice to law students and students in a graduate program in legal and ethical studies. In fact, I am supposed to be spending this summer working on a project to promote the rule of law in Nepal, not Durham County, North Carolina.

The source of our concern is Nifong’s egregious and systematic misconduct. Nifong has made false and prejudicial extrajudicial statements in violation of the North Carolina Rules of Professional Conduct. He has invited the public to disregard the civil rights of the accused and made appeals to prejudice. He has a continuing conflict of interest due to his political alliance with another attorney who hopes to profit from the Duke case. He has manipulated witnesses. Worst of all is his violation of NCRPC Rule 3.8 which prohibits a prosecutor from avoiding “pursuit of evidence merely because he or she believes it will damage the prosecutor’s case.” As recently documented by the News and Observer, Nifong ordered police to try to find evidence that supported the indictments he wanted to bring. He later pitied himself when it was not forthcoming. He also refused to even look at the exculpatory evidence offered to him by defense counsel. In making personal attacks on Nifong’s critics rather than squarely confronting their message about Nifong’s conduct, Schwade and others like him effectively concede these issues.

Corruption is defined as the conversion of what belongs to the public to private use. From the very beginning, Nifong has treated this case as a personal opportunity for himself. What even his most ardent supporters fail to notice is that many of the choices Nifong has made—assigning the case to himself, co-opting the police investigation, racing to obtain indictments before the primary election and conducting an unconstitutionally suggestive lineup that is likely to be suppressed—all undermine the case he insists is a personal mission for him.

The United States is the only western nation where local prosecutors are popularly elected and select their own assistants. In every other nation, prosecutors are selected by merit. They are centrally trained, supervised and evaluated according to exacting professional standards. Our system of elected district attorneys can work, but only if legal professionals do their part to educate the public about the proper standards for evaluating their conduct and citizens do their part to educate themselves about the issues rather than adopt the hear no evil, see no evil approach that Nifong’s defenders have done.

It was, therefore, appropriate for Cheek and the petitioners who supported him to challenge Nifong based on his conduct. Cheek showed a great deal of integrity and courage in putting aside his ties of friendship to Nifong and taking a politically risky position by first confronting Nifong about his misconduct and then working to defeat him. Cheek has made it painfully clear that he will not serve as District Attorney. He simply does not want Nifong to be District Attorney. If Nifong is defeated at election time, Cheek will have fought the good fight and won. If the people of Durham County are willing to look past the diversionary issues Nifong and his supporters are throwing up and critically examine Nifong’s conduct in light of all of the relevant legal, ethical and professional standards, then they can effectively exercise the unique power given to them and ensure their community’s well being.

At 5:23 PM, August 26, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

In response to John Schwade's August 5th dated article in News and Observer: "By staying on the sidelines, Cheek shows no bravado"

You may also want to see Lewis Cheek's article published in Newsobserver on August 19.

Decision not to run for office was a professional one by Lewis Cheek

At 9:41 AM, August 27, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

In response to New York Times article "Files From Duke Rape Case Give Details but No Answers" dated August 25, by Duff Wilson.

Numerous responses have been written for this NYT article. A good list of the responses is included in Times and the Blogs

At 12:21 PM, October 15, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Re the latest from Duff Wilson -- does he really think anyone buys his characterization of Kim Roberts's statements to Ed Bradley -- new version of events that night? Go back to sleep, Duff, along with Chuckie from the Durham Observer. The real journalists can take it from here.

At 9:36 AM, October 18, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Barry Saunders comes out from under his rock again -- evidently he hasn't seen any of the coverage of Nifong's destruction and manipulation of evidence or Gottlieb's fabrications in the past few months.
Go back under the rock, Barry -- the real journalists will take it from here.
Lacrosse Episode Was Lame

At 9:43 AM, October 18, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

A new low, even for the Herald-Sun (aka Nifong's rag):

Little new in '60 Minutes' report:

I wouldn't call it "an aura of sweet innocence" when 3 individuals loudly proclaim their innocence and the outrageous way they've been treated by the prosecutor in this non-case. The rest of the "opinion piece" is beneath contempt. What a ridiculous excuse for a newspaper.

At 1:46 PM, October 30, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

In response to Grant Farred October 29 Herald Sun article:

Here is my point-by point reply to Farrad.

"Secret racism underlying lacrosse case" by Grant Farred

The pervasive sense of unease about the Duke lacrosse affair remains. If only initially, the players and the university’s administration wanted the entire event to remain a secret That was impossible because it is the very nature of secrets to reveal themselves.

*****The players were cooperative from the beginning. What evidence is there that they "wanted the event to remain secret?" Misleading.

And the lacrosse affair came burdened with a public history. A history that includes the sexual past of the alleged victim as well as the criminal record of the Duke players – from the arrest and prosecution of lacrosse players from Washington D.C., to Durham to the lacrosse team’s reputed tendency toward arrogant sexual prowess. These proclivities are complicated by the neglected issue, that of ongoing racism in the not-so-New South.

*****Notice "sexual past" only is used toward the alleged victim, not "criminal" past. She actually is the convicted felon. You make this Lacrosse team sound like the Bloods or Crips with verbiage that suggests a national wide crime spree. "Arrogant sexual prowess"...can you justify with some facts?...and the use of the adjective "arrogant"...can you substaniate in regard to THESE THREE BOYS... do you just like it? Uh-oh,you leave subject of crimes leveled against boys to obfuscate on volatile racial topics. What a dodge.

The racist taunts by the lacrosse players on that infamous March night were nothing historically new. The vulnerability of black bodies now assumes a different guise, but its political realities remain unchanged, especially in this instance, as it applies to black and minority women. That is only a public secret, but an ongoing shame.

******Kim Roberts admitted she made the first "racist taunt." Author ignores. Kim Roberts admits NONE of the three Accused used any racial taunts. Note hyperbole, about" black bodies" Three white bodies may spent 30 years in jail for a crime they did not DO. DUH!

Why have the racial slurs and a player’s e-mail “promise” about killing and skinning “strippers b—s” been forgotten, and transgressions against Durhamites made victim to the relentless commitment to exonerating the three players? In casting the players as the aggrieved “victims,” as CBS’ “60 Minutes” did and the players, their attorneys and the PR machines continue to insist, what has been eliminated from discussion is a more serious issue. How is the lacrosse affair symptomatic of the political culture at Duke?

******Because the accused made no racial slurs. And you don't go to prison for thirty years, Mr. Crybaby, because your friend responded to a slur with a slur. Get some sense of balance please. That "skinning Strippers" E-mail is from a book STILL taught at Duke in the English department. Take your gripes to the Head of the English Dept.where evidentally you are employed. Oh, no! Hold everything.!.The "more serious" issue is "political culture at Duke?" Than a false conviction for rape? What planet do you live on?!

Why is there not a more urgent sense on the university campus about March 200^? Why has it not precipitated a more profound educational, political, and intellectual crisis? If the gravity of the situation did register, how is it possible that the team could be reinstated despite its criminal history? How could an athletic director’s response to the affair suggest that this was simply a matter of “boys being boys,” by which he really means that historic white privilege should go unimpeded, and perhaps even punished?

******What criminal history? Mr. Hyperbole, get a grip on yourself! Does "White privilege" mean spending 30 years in jail for something you didn't do? This is ALL about your agenda , isn't it?

This tendency is made all the more troubling by a recent political campaign on the Duke campus. Mobilized through the proliferation of Blue Devil blue armbands, too visible on campus early in the fall semester, inscribed with the numbers of the three indicted players and the defiant proclamation, “Innocent” (in bold white), Duke University students are now said to be registering to vote in Durham in unprecedented numbers.

******You"re offended by armbands?

By transferring their registration from other places, by enfranchising themselves in Durham, these students’ only intention is to oust District Attorney Mike Nifong. This selective intervention amounts to nothing so much as the deliberate act of closing ranks against Durham. What Duke students becoming Durham citizens does is displace the problem of racism from the lacrosse team and the university to Durham’s political system.

******Ousting a corrupt Prosecutor is "closing ranks against Durham.?" Duke students are importing racism to Durham? You think a lot of your student body, don't you, Mr. Professor?

This is a historically ironic move, this drive to register “locally,” because Duke students are notorious in their disconnect from the “black” city of Durham. They ate here exercising their right to the franchise without any other sense of civic responsibility. The plan here is to not act in Durham or for the general good of Durham, but to act against the non-Duke Durham community. Can this intervention be motivated by anything other than naked self-interest?

******You don't think it is in the "general good" of Durham to remove a corrupt prosecutor who indicts before investigation? Prof. Coleman might disagree. Will you applaud that tactic WHEN, not IF... it is used against minorities in the future? Or do you believe in two systems of justice..based on race (such "Old South" surprise me)) What is your "naked self-interest?'

The goal of these new, expedient and transient members of Durham’s political community is to repair the damage done to historic white male privilege by voting against a DA vigorous, perhaps even questionable, in his efforts to prosecute the “innocent.”

******We see the charged "buzz words." "Historic white male privilege" is a trump shut down any dispute. It's to induce guilt to stifle debate. Won't work. If he's "questionable" , why shouldn't they vote against him? You prefer a "questionable" D./A.? Lord have mercy!

The “Innocent” campaign may be motivated by a keenly felt opposition to Nifong’s handling of the case, but it does little more than obscure what is really at stake. Why is the effort to remove Nifong from office not accompanied by a similar vigorous interrogation of those who spewed racial epithets? Why not a “No Racism” or “No Violence Against Women” armband?

*****What is" at stake". oh, deluded one, is the LIVES of three young men who may go to jail on a false charge. Listen to yourself! You want your agendas to trump that NOW. Get a priority will you? If this were your son, I think you would prefer to see me wearing an "Innocent" armband than one touting "Save the Whales." You sound like quite the whiner!

All of which, of course, begs the crucial question: What is it precisely that these three players, and the lacrosse team in general, are “innocent” of? Racism? Underage drinking? Hiring sex workers under a false name? Homophobia? The abdication of a collective team – what happened was not a “mistake” but part of an older and widely known pattern of lacrosse behavior – and larger institutional responsibility for declaring public what precisely it is that Duke University represents?

*******Do you READ? They are innocent of rape, kidnapping, assault..all that they are charged with. INNOCENT, you idiot! None of the "charges" you level carry thirty years in jail! They can and should be addressed but not till these boys are free! When a couple is carjacked by a violent criminal, they don't usually choose that occasion to thrash out martial problems, even crucial ones. Get my point? And are you implying these three boys should spend their lives in jail..because dolts like you are offended by "lacrosse behavior." I'm offended by your behavior in writing this!

The question needs to be answered. What does Duke stand against? At this moment, Duke university’s precise mission as a renowned institution of higher learning, one that touts its elevated international rankings, is the best kept secret in town.

*******What do YOU stand for? Convicting the innocent? The best kept secret in town is how Duke university has managed to degrade itself with professors who write such drivel as this! Duke parents, this writer is teaching and influencing your child for your $40,000 a year.

The writer is an associate professor of literature at Duke University

The responder is just a MOM who believes in Collin, Reade and Dave.

Joan Foster

At 1:50 PM, October 30, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

See more responses on Grant Farred article in his former university's site (Williams):

Easy Answers October 30 EphBlog

At 1:56 PM, October 30, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Response to Grant Farred:

Yes there is secret racism underlying the duke case- its black racism against 3 innocent whites who have done nothing except be white.

At 1:57 PM, October 30, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Google in "Grant Farred" and read some of the rubbish this guy has written. I read a transcript of a TV broadcast with Juan Williams, and was amused and dismayed at Farred's inability to express himself cogently and logically. Every other word was "You know." His racism is readily apparent. I believe black racism is rampant and readily embraced at Duke. Why is this? Why does Duke condone black racism any more than it would white racism? Do the 88 want to improve race relations at Duke or exasperate them? Who are the dyed-in-the-wool racists and spewers of hate? The 88? Is this the latest Durham gang to terrorize the city?-- DUKEMOM

At 3:23 PM, November 02, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

More reactions to Grant Farred article "Secret racism ..."

Why the Duke Hoax Continues Part I: The Duke Faculty November 2, William L. Anderson

At 9:55 PM, January 05, 2007, Anonymous Anonymous said...

In response to Cathy Davidson's January 5 dated article in Newsobserver: "In the aftermath of a social disaster."

1. Apologia for a Disaster by KC Johnson

2. Ugh...Redux by Michael Gustafson

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In response to Cathy Davidson's January 5 dated article in Newsobserver: "In the aftermath of a social disaster."

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We should keep the memory of the Hate-88 and their disgust for their own students alive on the web where kids thinking about going to Duke can search names and find them. THE HATE 88

Abe, Stan (Art, Art History, and Visual Studies)
Albers, Benjamin (University Writing Program)
Allison, Anne (Cultural Anthropology)
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Mahn, Jason (University Writing Program)
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Mason, Lisa (Surgical Unit-2100)
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Parades, Liliana (Romance Studies)
Payne, Charles (AAAS and History)
Pierce-Baker, Charlotte (Women's Studies)
Pebles-Wilkins, Wilma
Petters, Arlie (Math)
Plesser, Ronen (Physics)
Radway, Jan (Literature)
Rankin, Tom (Center for Documentary Studies)
Rego, Marcia (University Writing Program)
Reisinger, Deborah S. (Romance Studies)
Rosenberg, Alex (Philosophy)
Rudy, Kathy (Women's Studies)
Schachter, Marc (English)
Shannon, Laurie (English)
Sigal, Pete (History)
Silverblatt, Irene (Cultural Anthropology)
Somerset, Fiona (English)
Stein, Rebecca (Cultural Anthropology)
Thorne, Susan (History)
Viego, Antonio (Literature)
Vilaros, Teresa (Romance Studies)
Wald, Priscilla (English)
Wallace, Maurice (English and AAAS)
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Great comment on ALM American Lawyers's to their recent posting on duke---

I can only hope that the travesty at Duke will cause corrupt or even overzealous prosecutors from proceeding in the face of an absence of evidence. During the pendency of the farce i repeatedly asked Dean Bartlett of Duke Law to make a public statement about Nifong's conduct of the case-until Proffesor Coleman came public not a single law professor at Duke took up for the rule of law-a truly disgraceful performance. As someone who has been hesitant to find cops and prosecutors less than honest, this affair opened my eyes to a different reality--cops will lie on occasion and prosecutors will keep evidence from defendants. When this happens we are not better than the Soviet Union or Hussein's 'justice system'. I am reminded of the illegetimate prosecutor of the former Secretary of labor, Ray Donovan, when he spent millions of dollars defending himself from bogus charges from a NYC prosecutor. Donovan was ultimately acquitted after a tortuous several years----"where do i now recover my reputation" Keep up the good work with this blog.

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