Unintentional self -parody is one of my favorite forms of humor.
That’s why, for all its very serious errors and its ad himinems directed at me, when I got to the end of UNC-Wilmington professor Chris Halkides’ "John in Carolina’s post, ‘KC Johnson Now'” post I had to laugh.
In his Concluding Remarks Halkides tells readers:
”In his post ‘KC Johnson Now’ John has given a clinic in how not to blog.”He goes on to say I’ve made it harder:
“for those of us who want blogging to be held to as high a standard as traditional journalism.”Now look back at the head of his post where you’ll see:
“(Update 7/8/2009: This post has been edited since it was first uploaded. Three paragraphs have been removed.)”Helkides says I’ve “given a clinic in how not to blog” and preens that I’ve made it “harder” for those like him “who want blogging to be held to as high a standard as traditional journalism.”
But he begins his post with an “Update“ that doesn’t give his readers even a hint of why he removed three paragraphs from his post.
I'll bet many of you are at least smiling now, if not LOL.
John and Joan Foster claim to admire Johnson’s contributions to the DL case.Joan Foster is very capable of speaking for herself, so I’ll respond only for myself.
Halkides seriously distorts and misleads his readers when he tells them I “claim to admire Johnson’s contributions to the DL case.”
I admire some of what KC’s done in the DL case and have said so often.
But I've also questioned publicly since late 2007 some of what he’s done and not done in relation to the case. What's more, I'm disgusted by other things he’s done and not done in relation to it.
Here’s some of what I said in KC Johnson Now:
KC Johnson's made extremely important contributions to the struggle for truth and justice in the Duke lacrosse (DL) case. When the lacrosse players who’d just been declared “innocent” by NC’s attorney general on Apr. 11, 2007 singled KC out for praise, he deserved their tribute.Can anyone explain why Halkides distorted what I actually said into his unqualified statement that I “claim to admire Johnson’s contributions to the DL case?”
I owe KC my own thanks. During the first year or so of the case he helped me to understand the DL case much better than I would have without his writings and our phone talks. It’s no exaggeration to say that during that time his DL posts were not only informative, but inspirational. I urged JinC readers to visit KC's Durham-in-Wonderland (DIW) blog daily.
The outstanding work KC’s done will always be to his credit.(bold in original)
But it needs to also be said that KC's ignored very significant matters related to the case which by any reasonable standard he should address. What’s more, he’s written things and offered judgments that are at best highly questionable and, in some instances, absurd.
I want to give you examples of what I’m talking about.
I’ve two reasons for doing so.The first is to inform you. The second is to make clear why I read KC now with a good deal of skepticism, often discounting what he says because it’s biased or factually wrong or petty or some combination of the three. . . .
He was at best sloppy with the information that was right there for him in KC Johnson Now. (At this time I’m willing to grant that Halkides’ distortion was not deliberate.)
By being at best sloppy with the information he had, Halkides invites laughter given that he scolded me for making things harder for him and others “who want blogging to be held to as high a standard as traditional journalism.”
I’ll comment in the next few days on some of the much more serious problems with professor Halkides' post.
UPDATE @ 7:15 pm on 7/10: Professor Halkides has now added a second update to his post explaining the deletion of the three paragraphs and apologizing for any confusion he may have caused. I commend him for doing that.