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Friday, January 26, 2007

10 Lessons From the Duke Rape Hoax

  1. Never trust a 911 call. As one forum poster observed: "It is really amazing what Kim's fake 911 call created. A domino effect of staggering proportions."

    Do a Google search on bogus 911 calls and you will see there is a national epidemic of prank and bogus 911 calls. Due mostly to the proliferation of cell phone usage among teenagers. What is truly amazing is how a fake 911 call by Kim Roberts was used to brand the entire Duke men's lacrosse team as a gang of racists.

    Duke University President Richard Brodhead was cowered into issuing a press release in response to the fake 911 call. He apologized to the two anonymous (at that time) liars: "I am sorry the woman and her friend were subjected to such abuse."

  2. Never trust a prosecutor or district attorney who says he has a case. DA's are not all men of principle and integrity. The term "rogue prosecutor" has now been given eternal life by Mike Nifong. Police and prosecutors can both be corrupt and there is no guarantee of a safeguard to put a check on their misconduct. DA's are politicians first and prosecutors second. Mixing the criminal justice system and politics in the office of district attorney is a recipe for injustice.

  3. Never trust an alleged rape victim to be truthful or accurate in their accusations. Perhaps as many as 25 percent of all sexual assault allegations are false. Wendy McElroy adds, this "category of 'false accusations' does not distinguish between accusers who lie and those who are honestly mistaken. Nor does it indicate that a rape did not occur, merely that the specific accused is innocent."

    Support with your whole heart the presumption of innocence and Blackstone's formulation: "better that ten guilty persons escape than that one innocent suffer."

  4. Never trust the main stream media (MSM) to cover a "news" story accurately. Papers and magazines are advertising vehicles with a biased editorial attitude and a corporate image to protect. Thomas Jefferson wrote, " Advertisements... contain the only truths to be relied on in a newspaper." That sounds about right, especially after witnessing first-hand how established papers like the New York Times, The Herald-Sun, and the News & Observer distorted the truth to suit their own world view. You have to agree with A. J. Liebling, who said, "people everywhere confuse what they read in newspapers with news."

  5. Never trust a cable television "news" show. This is covered under #4, but it needs to be emphasised. Cable news is to news as military music is to music. It is a distorted hamstrung version of the real thing. A parade of B.S. artists, crackpots, posers and liars, all pontificating about the Duke lacrosse case proved that cable news is as trustworthy as internet spam. An episode of American Chopper or Myth Busters will give you more honesty than a year of Nancy Grace and Greta Van Susteren combined.

  6. Never trust your school or university to protect you or lookout for you. A university is not a family. It is a business, and they seem to be under no obligation to protect the civil rights of their students. A university is a cold-blooded money making enterprise (non-profit just means they can't make an obscene profit) that will disown any student the moment that student is labeled a liability.

    Join a religious organization if you want or need a social safety net. After Dennis Rader, the infamous Wichita BTK (Bind, Torture, Kill) serial killer, was captured, basically red-handed, his church pastor issued a statement saying in part:
    Dennis is a member of Christ Lutheran Church... We are all concerned for Dennis Rader and his family. We lift up our prayers in support of all of them. The members of Christ Lutheran Church are in a state of shock and bewilderment about the turn of events that have unfolded this week..

    We lift up our prayers, support and compassion for the victims and family members involved with the BTK murders. We ask for care and compassion of the Wichita community as this congregation deals with this tragic and difficult situation.
    The pastor continued communicating with Rader and offered pastoral support during his trial and sentencing. The scary truth is that the convicted BTK serial killer received more support from his church than three innocent young men, Dave Evans, Collin Finnerty and Reade Seligmann got from Duke University or its faculty.

    Note: If you read all of Duke President Richard Brodhead's statements regarding the "hoax" you will see that he never used the names, first or last, of his three innocent students until Duke announced on Jan. 3rd that Collin Finnerty and Reade Seligmann could resume their studies. Brodhead never knew them.

  7. Never trust the NAACP. Do not use the words "NAACP" and "civil rights" in the same sentence. The NAACP is *not* a civil rights "watchdog" or a civil rights organization. It is a sour combination of a shrinking special interest group and dying fraternal organization. Just like the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks its best days are long past and it is probably dead and just doesn't know it yet.

  8. Never hire strippers. If you must break this rule, then never hire strippers sight unseen or without a written contract for their services. Never, never trust a stripper. As a minimum make sure strippers have chaperones or security. It also won't hurt to take a video of them from the moment they arrive until they leave. Never allow an intoxicated stripper you have hired to perform in your zip code. If they become intoxicated send them home in a taxi immediately. Best advice, just go to a club if you want adult entertainment.

  9. Never trust a grand jury. A grand jury is a prosecutor's private posse. A ham sandwich doesn't stand a chance.

  10. Never hide your face from a TV or news camera if you are innocent and caught up in an investigation or scandal. Smile, walk with a purpose, and say to the reporters: "I appreciated your interest and if you can give me your card I'll try and get back to you."
Bottom line: Never trust anyone
TJN: Duke/Nifong Hoax archives

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