From the time the first reports of sexual assault at Duke University surfaced, these intellectual vigilantes went to work. Houston Baker, a professor of English and Afro-American Studies, issued a public letter condemning the "abhorrent sexual assault, verbal racial violence and drunken white male privilege loosed among us." He seems to have simply presumed the students guilty.
Shortly after that, 88 members of the Duke arts and science faculty--the so-called Gang of 88--signed a public statement praising campus demonstrators who had distributed a "WANTED" poster that branded the lacrosse players as "rapists." The Gang of 88 didn't use that term, but its statement referred to "what happened to this young woman." Ignoring calls to wait for the evidence, the gang instead went into full social-justice gear.
"What is apparent every day now is the anger and fear of many students who know themselves to be objects of racism and sexism, who see illuminated in this moment's extraordinary spotlight what they live with every day...We're turning up the volume in a moment when some of the most vulnerable among us are being asked to quiet down while we wait. To the students speaking individually and to the protesters making collective noise, thank you for not waiting and for making yourselves heard." In other words, Go vigilantes go!
Now it is time to hold these folks accountable. I know it’s too much to expect that these politically correct vigilantes have their teaching licenses taken away. But perhaps it’s not too much to ask that they be officially reprimanded by the university.
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