Historian and blogger KC Johnson has done it again.
This time he’s called Duke University President Richard H. Brodhead for his denial he scapegoated the Men’s lacrosse team.
In typical KC fashion, he gets right to the point:
Richard Brodhead’s recent denial of “scapegoating” the lacrosse team seems unsustainable. In the Duke president’s public response to Friends of Duke University, the sole evidence that he cited to substantiate his claim that he hasn't scaegoated the team was the existence of the Coleman Committee report.There's a lot more, all of it informative.
But he had described this document to the University community as favorable to the lacrosse team only in that it did not “confirm the worst allegations against this team”—which, of course, were that three players committed gang rape and dozens of others covered it up.
Many people would consider Brodhead’s failure to mention that the report detailed the players’ positive academic performance, excellent relations with Duke staff, and extensive record of community service confirmation of the charge of his scapegoating the team.
More important, the Coleman Committee report conclusively showed how Brodhead already had scapegoated the team when he forced the resignation of lacrosse coach Mike Pressler.
As William Gerrish, whose son captained the 2005 Duke lacrosse team, recently noted, Pressler “is perhaps the only one who did nothing wrong during this incident, and yet he ended up paying for it.”
KC cares about doing right, something we're seen little of from Duke faculty and administrators as the lacrosse hoax and frame-ups play themselves out.