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Sunday, February 25, 2007

Duke/Niifong Hoax: Day #313

Updated - today's items:

Greer & Payton Help No. 6 Blue Devils Past No. 12 Denver, 13-9Zack Greer posted two goals and three assists and Sam Payton won 11-of-12 face-offs and added two goals as sixth-ranked Duke defeated 12th-ranked Denver, 13-9, on a rainy Sunday afternoon in Durham, N.C.

The Blue Devils improve to 2-0 while the Pioneers fall to 1-2.

"This was a really tough weekend from the standpoint that we played two good teams," Duke head coach John Danowski said. "I'm really proud of the way we responded today after such an emotional day yesterday. We got goals from a lot of different people all weekend long, and we needed that to be successful." ...

LieStoppers forum: Duke vs. Denver, Live Thread
LieStoppers forum: Duke Beats Denver in Downpour 13-9, smaller crowd no less enthusiastic (pictures)

Edward G. Robinson III, News & Observer:
Duke lax rejoices in return — A 17-11 season-opening victory over Dartmouth is only part of the story for the Blue Devils and their fans - Somewhere there is a box score written in tiny type revealing details of Duke's 17-11 men's lacrosse victory over Dartmouth on Saturday afternoon. It will show the Blue Devils now own a 1-0 record.

But nowhere in that statistical account of the game will you find information to help place those details in proper perspective, to explain why one victory in front of a packed crowd of 6,485 at Koskinen Stadium meant so much more.

Nothing in that box score can explain why Duke students uncharacteristically chose to tailgate before the game, why they wore newly purchased lacrosse jerseys, why they stood and cheered for long stretches to watch the home team. Nothing in that box score can explain why a national audience, tuning in on ESPNU, would be so intrigued with this season-opening game...
ESPN: Photo Gallery - Dartmouth game

Mike McCusker: Welcome Back

Joan Foster, LieStoppers:
6..13...45 — 6..13...45 ...The crowd roared with the band!And YOUR team took the field againWith Brodhead smiling in the stands...

Brett Friedlander, Fayetteville Observer:
At long last, Duke lacrosse is back — The moment had finally arrived. After nearly a year away from the game, it was time to play lacrosse again.

In the Duke locker room at the far end of Koskinen Stadium, the walls vibrated with the sound of loud music as the Blue Devils worked themselves into a frenzy. Then, an unfamiliar face showed up at the door telling everyone to relax. Because the first game of an ESPNU televised doubleheader was running late, Duke’s game would be delayed by 20 minutes. Predictably, the news didn’t go over well.

That is, until new coach John Danowski brought some tension-breaking perspective to his team. “We’ve waited this long,” he said with his heavy Long Island accent. “What’s a few more minutes?” ...

Christian Red, NY Daily News:
After the scandal — Duke lacrosse starts over - Jimmy Buffett, the singer and muse synonymous with the never-ending fiesta, blares over the practice field adjacent to Koskinen Stadium as the Duke men's lacrosse team concludes its two-plus hour practice.
"Better days are in the cards, I can feel it
Feel it in the changing winds, feel it when I fly
So talk to me, I'll listen to your story
I've been around enough to know that there's more than meets the eye . . ."
As the refrain for this Buffett ballad, "Love and Luck", kicks in - "Everybody needs a little good luck charm . . ." - Bo Carrington, a junior midfielder, performs an impromptu jig before joining the main huddle at one end of the field...
There is no nonsense so errant that it cannot be made the creed of the vast majority by adequate governmental action. - Bertrand Russell

Letter by William L. Anderson to Sports Illustrated:
S.I. Disinformation — In yet another example of the disinformation that Sports Illustrated has produced on the so-called Duke Lacrosse Case, S.L. Price worries that the ever-changing stories of the accuser in this case "could well override any evidence." I would ask the simple question: What evidence? The prosecutor, Michael B. Nifong, promised Judge Ronald Stephens in seeking a DNA court order that the DNA definitely would identify the alleged rapists. Once it became clear that there was no inculpatory DNA evidence, Nifong immediately declared that DNA was irrelevant to the case...

So, yes, there is "evidence" in this case. However, all of it is exculpatory. Unfortunately, from the start, SI has sought to present a "politically correct" case and has tried to make this look like a legitimate rape case instead of the wrongful prosecution that it has become. Furthermore, you failed to point out that Irving Joyner was designated as the person by the local NAACP to "monitor" the case. Joyner earlier all but called for a local jury to ignore any exculpatory evidence and convict on all charges no matter what actually was presented.

The coverage by SI from the start is this case has been nothing short of dishonest and shameful. Your latest piece continues the dishonesty that has been your publication's trademark in this case. Perhaps you might want to try again and actually write about what happened, not what you wish had happened.
S.L. Price, Sports Illustrated: The Season After

Prof. Michael GustafsonMichael Gustafson, Duke engr. professor, Blog of Convenience:
Juxtapositional Fallacies — The first part of my critique involves the first four paragraphs of a guest column written by six Duke faculty members - Professors Aldrich, Burian, Chafe, Nijhout, and Wood and Associate Professor Haynie. The column begins "The time has come to move forward." The first paragraph ends with, "Now is the time to turn what has been a time of crisis into an opportunity for constructive change -- to help make Duke a model of mutual respect and caring."

The next three paragraphs then look backward, excoriating the lacrosse team and its party, followed by two paragraphs about unrelated events - one where a stripper had insults hurled towards her by a fraternity and one where a woman declared that, "We are all guilty...because we have never called into account those people who have engaged in date rape or sexual assault."

Six highly respected, very established Duke faculty from five different departments wrote this column. People whose careers have been marked by excellence in research in their fields - for that is what earns a person tenure here - wrote this. For that reason alone, if not others, it is important to look at this work...

... these six distinguished faculty members, in telling us we should "move forward," skip all that. I have no choice but to believe that moving forward, to these six faculty members, means take the story DA Nifong chose to tell and then fast-forward to now as if nothing else had happened. I have no choice but to believe that these faculty members, in seeing that the reality of the situation in no way plays into the assumptions of white, male, athlete privilege that our (blessedly former) colleague Houston Baker championed want us to base our thoughts and actions on the narrative created in the first two weeks rather than the realities discovered over the past eleven months...
LieStoppers forum: They were no angels, but these are false dichotomies

John Stevenson, Herald-Sun:
Nifong named in courts' rulings — Internet bloggers and cable television pundits have long attacked Durham District Attorney Mike Nifong over his handling of the Duke lacrosse sex-offense case. But Nifong only recently came under scrutiny from some of the loftiest legal sectors in the land.

Early this month, he was adversely mentioned in rulings from two out of 12 U.S. Circuit Courts of Appeal, with one judge alluding to him as a prosecutor "run amok" because of the felony indictments he obtained from a grand jury last year against three Duke lacrosse players. Lawyers view the development as highly significant, since federal appellate courts are at the pinnacle of American jurisprudence, falling immediately below the U.S. Supreme Court in the overall scheme of things.

"I am not aware of any other case from the circuit courts that single out a prosecutor by name to exemplify prosecutorial misconduct," veteran attorney Bill Thomas said Friday. "It is an extremely unusual circumstance. I have never seen it done before in my career of more than 25 years."
LieStoppers: John Stevenson, Blog Hooligan? — In noting that the infamy of Defendant Nifong’s misconduct has become so well accepted that it has been noted on multiple occasions by multiple US Circuit Court judges, Mr. Stevenson helps to build local awareness of the extent of disrepute the disgraced District Attorney has brought to his office, to Durham and to the entire criminal justice system...

John in Carolina:
Addison Series #3 – “Not my poster” — For general background on the Addison Series posts see “The Cpl. Addison Series.” Cpl. David Addison is a veteran Durham police officer whose regular assignment is Coordinator for Durham CrimeStoppers, described as an independent nonprofit organization...

Addison, acting as Coordinator for Durham CS, produced and distributed on March 28, 2006, the text of a CS “Wanted” poster. That text then appeared in poster form under a DPD header. The “Wanted” poster circulated for 13 days before Russ directed that it be substantially changed the day the public would learn the DNA testing at the state lab had come back negative...
KC Johnson:
Common Hypocrisy — A discerning reader notes that Common’s own repertoire appears to contradict his denunciation of the lacrosse players. The video for “Testify” is available at Common’s official site. The song is about a woman who accuses her husband of committing a crime that she actually committed—charges that fool the media, the prosecutor, and ultimately the jury...The double standards evident in the lacrosse case never cease to amaze.

KC Johnson:
Sunday Wrap-up — In the Wonderland that is Durham, public information officers seem to practice disinformation instead. A case in point is DPD spokesperson Kammie Michael. She reached her high point in the lacrosse case on March 28, when she definitively stated, in writing, that Kim Roberts was not the first 911 caller. In fact, Roberts told the responding officers on March 14 that she had made the call, and she reiterated the point in her March 22 statement.

So, two options exist: (a) Michael was lying; (b) Michael is incompetent, and gave the press wrong information because she didn’t know how to find accurate material....
John Branston, Memphis Flyer:
"Waltz" Prosecutor DiScenza Defends Press, Grand Jurors, and Feds — Tim DiScenza, the federal government's trial attorney in the Tennessee Waltz cases in Memphis, stuck up for the fairness of the press and prosecutors Friday in response to a scathing critique by an author who's writing a book about the Duke lacrosse scandal.

While the comments of DiScenza and state prosecutor Amy Weirich were general in nature, they contrasted starkly with the views of guest speaker Stuart Taylor Jr., the headliner at the Rhodes Institute on the Profession of Law. About 100 people, most of them lawyers fulfilling a continuing education requirement, attended the event. Taylor is legal affairs columnist for the National Journal and a contributing editor for Newsweek. His topic was "The Duke Lacrosse Case and What It Says About Our Criminal Justice Process, Academics, and News Media."

What it says, he suggested, is mostly bad: Durham N.C. prosecutor Mike Nifong made an "outrageous rush to judgment," most of the media botched the story because of their political correctness and general shadiness, and Duke professors and administrators were spineless and all too eager to join Nifong�s side...

letter by Bill Cloud, Chapel Hill, to News & Observer:
Filling in the blanks — Regarding Public Editor Ted Vaden's Feb. 18 column "Suspects, identifications and the paper":

When it comes to describing people sought by police, newspapers shouldn't let readers assume race. That's what The N&O did with its raceless description of the man accused of raping a Duke student at an off-campus party. Once I saw he was wearing a do-rag, I knew he was black.

Of course, I could have been wrong. Not every person who wears such a head covering is black. (Do-rag is a slang term that shouldn't have appeared in print.) And not everyone with blond hair is white...

Certainly weigh the social value of giving a description. But when you decide it's meaningful, give the person's race. Don't leave it to readers to fill in the blank. They will, sometimes wrongly.

Nifong by the Moonlight Ball Cancelled - The Organizers for D.A.M.N. Appreciation Week regretfully announced that their final event of the week honoring District Attorney Mike Nifong, "Nifong by Moonlight Ball", was cancelled due to poor tickets sales...

D.A.M.N. Appreciation Week Scandals! - Organizers of D.A.M.N. week were forced to admit that DNA results from Judge Stephens DNA Derby are missing and presumed lost. The details of what happen to the swabs taken by Nurse Levity are still sketchy at this time. When contacted by this reporter Nurse Levity swears she personally gave the swabs to Dr. Meehan after the event and saw him drive off with them in a Carolina Ale House cooler.

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