This column marks my second full year of writing in this column for The Daily Star.
It's amazing how fast time flies when you're having fun. It looks like the upcoming year is going to provide me with a number of controversial topics, and I certainly look forward to this.
Even though it was tempting to write about the Spitzer debacle or the attacks made on the Senate floor by the pathetic little man, Harry Reid, on a private citizen, Rush Limbaugh, I promised one more column on the Duke lacrosse fiasco and the apologies that have not yet been made.
Everyone knows about the out-of-control district attorney who has fortunately been required to resign and has been disbarred.
After all the lawsuits are over, he will probably be reduced to selling pencils on a street corner somewhere. It will be a fitting conclusion to a dishonorable career and it will serve him right.
More worrisome are the three remaining lynch mob characters. These are the media, Duke's president and the ultra-liberal segment of Duke's faculty, all of whom's behavior was reprehensible.
First the media. Can anyone point out where there has been an apology anywhere nearly as spectacular as their pre-judging the case without waiting for the facts to come out?
Someday, maybe someone will remind them that their job is to simply report the news and keep their liberal biases to themselves.
Say what you might about Fox News and The Wall Street Journal _ they consistently pointed out all the facts that contradicted the case being made against the three Duke players even before the DNA results came back.
The New York Times, however, stuck with its theme, as Robert Bliwise, author of "One Year Later," points out, of "privileged whites abusing poor black women." It's sad when liberal agendas take precedence over facts, but, hey, if it sells more copies or draws more readers, it must be OK.
President Brodhead's attempt of an apology? If you want to call it an apology, you can find it in the New York Times Oct. 2 edition. You'll have to look hard for it since it was a very small article on the bottom of Page 28, right across from the obituaries.
He apologizes for "not having better supported" the players. Wow, what a man of character. It came 11/2 years later and after he had canceled the lacrosse season, pressured the coach into resigning (he would have been fired otherwise) and having to restart his career, uprooting his family from a place he loved for 16 years, and suspending three innocent players, players who could have gone to prison for up to 30 years.
Isn't he just wonderful? He simply caved to the radical wing of Duke's faculty, the same ilk that forced the Harvard president out of town for simply stating a fact.
The faculty is too petty and arrogant to even consider an apology. Not one of the 88 signers has asked to have his/her name removed from the original ad, and one professor said "she would sign the petition again in a heartbeat."
Anyone with a brain could see they had tried and convicted the entire program, yet they feel they were misunderstood.
How about this? One professor issued this statement. "We had a long discussion about what the word regret' means (very Clintonesque), and professors weighed in and we had a whole range of very detailed discussions in terms of the etymology of specific words. We were disappointed people did not understand the intention _ it was never to rush to judgment, it was about listening to our students who have been trying to make their way in a not only racist and sexist campus, but country."
A year later and this was the best they could come up with? Imagine trying to stay awake in that professor's class. Sorry prof, everyone understood exactly your intentions, which is why you and your gang still have egg on your faces. Fortunately, these professors have few if any majors, and their courses are not required for a degree.
One blogger hit the nail on the head when she said, "One of the more depressing, yet enlightening aspects of this case is that the response of the Gang of 88 reflects a mentality of the hard left that is prevalent on many, if not most, university campuses today. The most elite' universities also are the repositories of the worst of these kinds."
They pretty much are an example of the moral dry rot of our society. Oops, I bet that is a politically incorrect no-no.
Gang of 88, try reading the Fifth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, which reads, in part, "No person shall be ... deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law."
It doesn't mention race, gender or class status.
Tom Sears is a professor of accounting at Hartwick College in Oneonta. He can be reached at SearsT@hartwick.edu. His column appears every other week.