The Duke non-rape case becomes even more clear Posted by: Billy Hollis
on Saturday, April 28, 2007
When attorney general Ray Cooper dropped all charges against the three Duke lacrosse players, he explicitly called them innocent. This week, he released a report in which he minces no words. This case was a travesty from the beginning, and Cooper lays that out clearly.
The report makes a number of points about the accuser’s ever-changing accounts, saying she “changed her story on so many important issues as to give the impression she was improvising as the interviews progressed, even when she was faced with irrefutable evidence that what she was saying was not credible…”. It also reiterates the complete lack of physical evidence, the ridiculous “no wrong answers” lineup in which the three players were fingered, and the strong nature of the alibis of the players. The complete report can be seen here.
This really leaves those who leaped to judgment on the case no place to hide. Those young men were treated atrociously, not just by rogue prosecutor Mike Nifong but also by Duke faculty and assorted journalists.
You might think they’re due some apologies. Well, they’re received some, and my respect certainly went up a notch for these two journalists. First, Jemele Hill of ESPN, who never even derided them in print:
So to Reade Seligmann, Collin Finnerty and David Evans, the three Duke lacrosse players whose lives were mangled by an unsupported rape accusation, I say two of the hardest words in the English language: I'm sorry.
It's not enough, and I won't pretend that it is. For the last year, your lives and those of your families have been more difficult than any of us can possibly imagine. I'll never know what it was like walking around normal society labeled a rapist. I'll never know what it's like to lose everything — your school, your program and your life — because of one unproven accusation.
You deserve all of that back and then some, but unfortunately, you won't get it.
And this, from Ruth Sheenan of the Raleigh Durham News and Observer, who did write about them, and at first did so with a presumption of guilt:
Surely by now you know I am sorry. I am writing these words now, and in this form, as a bookend to 13 months of Duke lacrosse coverage, my role in which started with a March 27 column that began:
"Members of the men's Duke lacrosse team: You know. We know you know."
She finished with:
This has been difficult territory. I'm paid to write about what I think as things happen. But rest assured, I know my errors. And now you know I know.
No ifs, ands, or buts. Well done.
Not so from some others. One of those who ought to be at the front of the line was Nancy Grace. I’ve seen nothing from her (though I saw something that looked like a parody of her apology here). Fortunately, Jon Stewart chewed her out as only he can do it.
I have not run across anything of consequence from Duke faculty either. Victor Davis Hanson comments on that:
Why won’t the Duke president or the culpable faculty apologize?
Because deeply entrenched among the Left is a notion of moral justice that transcends the law and is now to be adjudicated by elites versed in race/class/gender theories. In this way of thinking the “rape” is just a matter of semantics, the law an obstruction to the larger question still unresolved: a poor black woman performed sexually for white rich males.
De facto this is an indictment of our entire male-dominated capitalist system that put the poor, the female, the person of color in bondage to the white, male and wealthy.
In that prism, technicalities of law don’t matter and surely don’t address these larger pathologies so endemic in the United States, against which the university nearly alone exists to combat. That the “victim” lied under oath, ruined the reputations of innocents, was on drugs, was engaged in promiscuous sexual activity, and had a criminal record is simply proof of her victim status. This notion of a higher law unto themselves is used frequently by Left and Right, it is true, but never in such an injurious or hypocritical fashion as by the academic Left that on campuses has developed a real contempt for our laws of free speech and due process—again, seen as impediments to their version of heaven on earth.
That’s pretty harsh, but I really can’t argue with it. With the broad array of those on the left blasting the lacrosse players from the word go, we should see more apologies. But I have not noticed much of that kind of capability on the left. I have to wonder if they have even tried to come to terms with the fact that they got it wrong.
Readers are encouraged to note other apologia that I have not seen. I’d like to think there’s a lot out there, though I suspect otherwise.
As always, K.C. Johnson does a fabulous job of covering the details, and his article for ABC is a nice summation of why the lacrosse players deserve better than they’re getting from the likes of TerryMoran.
It really isn’t enough to recognize that the left was wrong in this case. The truth must go farther: the left has set itself up so that it is guaranteed to be wrong in future situations that present themselves as this one did. Any leftie who doesn’t go beyond: "You know, I thought they were guilty and couldn’t wait for them to be found so in a court of law." to "You know, I knee-jerked and I had better be smarter than that the next time, lest innocent parties suffer from my prejudices." is a jerk.
After I commented above I thought: "Wait a minute. What about the reasonable lefites who read about the Duke case and thought to themselves: ’This sounds terrible; I wonder what a full investigation will show the facts to be."?
Then I thought: "I wonder if the moon is made of green cheese.?"
This Atty. general is giving the Duke players all the ammo they need to destroy Nifong.
That may turn out to be someone else’s job. With what the special prosecutors have said so far, it’s looking more and more likely that Nifong will face criminal charges.
Besides, financially, Nifong is already quite likely to be destroyed by his legal bills defending himself against the ethics charges. Oh, I’d be surprised if Nifong were not named a co-defendent in the suit against the City of Durham, but there will be no blood left in that turnip by then.
The Duke case fits neatly into the Liberal narrative of Rich White Kids taking advantage of a poor minority woman. Nifong played on that to get reelected and the Liberal members of the media jumped on the story like a dog on a bone. Now the truth as come out don’t expect an apology from those who convicted the players before a trial. They believe, although the players didn’t rape the black girl, they might have. White guys are always guilty.
i’m gonna go out on a limb here and suggest that the press’s handling of this issue wasn’t born from liberalism, but from sensationalism. The case was dripping with elements that made it "news" worthy. So, the press ran whatever angle they could to sell papers. The angle of "let’s wait until all the facts are in" doesn’t sell papers today.
The people in the media might apologize, but you and I both know they’ll be leaping on the next salacious story like Rosie O’Donnel on doughnuts.
i’m gonna go out on a limb here and suggest that the press’s handling of this issue wasn’t born from liberalism, but from sensationalism
Sensationalism always trumps news worthiness. The initial impetus for running the story was its sensational and salacious nature. Then the race baiters got into the act. They tossed gasoline on the fire which kept the story in the public eye. Race may have been a factor, but sex and sensationalism kept it going. The Natalie Holloway case in Aruba has the same sensationalism with out the race factor and the media have been covering it wall to wall.
My longest blog of my own on Court TV Message Boards have been taken down, IMO, because I "named names," and posted a link to a document from the now Senator McKissick to Archie Smith, Clerk Of Superior Court in Durham, concerning my murdered brothers estate, and as of today, they still have done NOTHING!
Mr McKissick was not even aware my brother was dead (?!) and he wants a 10,000 retainer to take this back into civil court?! AND, even Archie Smith gave my mother and I names of lawyers, as he "would love to have this case before his court!"
My brother was murdered for hire, and LE were involved! THIS is why Sheriff Hill, and the Medical Examiner refuse to give us the documents and reports we asked for, and have proof from the one report the Sheriff’s Department did send, that clearly shows my brothers body to be staged, and they altered the colors (?!)
PLEASE help not only my family, but far too many who have suffered the same fate from barbarism and ruthless, corrupt government officials!