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April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review April 28, 2006 / 30 Nissan

Going loco in Duke case ‘COPO’

By Clarence Page


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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | As big news stories go, the Duke University lacrosse team's rape scandal already feels like old news even as its new news breaks.


That's because the defendants are being tried in two courts: the criminal justice system and the COPO, the Court of Public Opinion.


A prosecutor has indicted two members of the team for the alleged rape of one of two young women hired to perform what is delicately called "exotic dance" at an off-campus team party-gone-wild.


If that's all there was to it, this would be a local story, although a sad one for everybody involved.


But add the juicy elements of race (the suspects are white, the victim black), class (the lacrosse guys come from money, the dancer is a working-class single mother from historically black North Carolina Central University) and celebrity (Duke is to universities what Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes are to People magazine) and you have our biggest media racial eruption since, say. that fateful night when Kobe Bryant called for room service in Colorado.


In the COPO, old wounds are ripped open along lines of race and class, struggle and privilege, titillation and exploitation. Old fears, resentments and suspicions bloom again that a black woman or white man or (fill in your grievance group) cannot get a fair shake in the (take your pick) "racist," "sexist" or "politically correct" media or court system. These are the elements that draw a circus of cable TV news gabbers and talk radio yakkers, unfettered in their drive to fill air time by anything so trivial as, oh, yes, an absence of facts.


If the Rev. Jesse Jackson or the Rev. Al Sharpton do not parachute in on their own, they will be invited. Rush Limbaugh, for one, openly taunted them to come to town as he called the victim a "ho'," a remark for which he later apologized.


MSNBC talk show host Tucker Carlson challenged the credibility of a "crypto-hooker" who "hires herself out to dance naked" in front of strangers, as if the strangers who hire that dancer are not equally suspect. Ah, what a tangled web tough-on-crime conservatives weave when they try to defend rowdy jocks.


The first casualty of a media circus is the truth. Everything we are hearing about evidence and personal reputations is secondhand, highly selective and carefully spun by high-powered lawyers on both sides.


For example, none of the DNA samples from the team connected any of the players to an attack on the woman, but most rape convictions are made without any DNA match, legal experts say. It is we, the public, who have exaggerated the importance of DNA after watching, say, too many episodes of "CSI" on TV.


Besides, nurses said the woman's injuries were consistent with rape, but the athletes claim someone else must have raped her. Leaked photos suggest that the woman was injured before she came to the party, but other photos suggest she received new injuries while she was there.


Outsiders say race had nothing to do with it, but other accounts differ. For example, a neighbor outside the March 13 party at the Durham, N.C., house rented by three of the four captains of the Duke lacrosse team, says he heard one partygoer yell, "Thank your grandpa for my nice cotton shirt."


And on and on. "Pick your fact," writes Dahlia Lithwick, legal expert for the online magazine Slate, after going over the known evidence. "Each of them can, it seems, be spun both ways." Yes, pick your facts to validate your prejudices or whatever grievance for which you want this case to stand.


Small wonder that a lot of people lose faith in the ability of the courts to bring justice, let alone satisfaction, in such disputes. Think back, for example, to the hearings for Clarence Thomas and Anita Hill or the trials of O. J. Simpson and Michael Jackson or for Tawana Brawley's alleged attacker. How satisfying were those outcomes?


Don't expect much satisfaction in this case, either. Once the opposing sides are dug in around a racial eruption, their heels stay dug in.


But I don't blame the regular courts. I blame the Court of Public Opinion, energized by us, the media. When the COPO goes loco, genuine news turns into a form of pornography and it becomes harder for both the accused and their alleged victims to find justice.

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