Over the course of the last few weeks, I have received several requests for an update on the Frank Lombard case. Lombard is the (now former) Duke administrator who was accused last summer of attempting to allow, and even arrange for, strangers he met on the internet to rape his adopted child.
A few days ago, WRAL, a Raleigh-based news station, released an update on the case. That update is worth re-printing here, along with my commentary, both for what the update says and what it does not say:
“A former Duke University employee has agreed to plead guilty to a federal charge of sexual exploitation of a minor, authorities said Tuesday.”
Here, the “sexual exploitation of a minor” is not described in any great detail. That is good because the sexual exploitation Lombard inflicted upon his own child is simply too graphic to reprint fully. I have read all of the documentation in this case. It contains descriptions of conduct, which can only be described as sub-human.
“Frank M. Lombard, 42, of 24 Indigo Creek Trail in Durham, will enter the plea in federal court in Washington, D.C., on Dec. 17, authorities said. He likely will face 15 years in prison, authorities said.”
It is interesting that the first demographic mentioned is age, as opposed to race or sexual orientation. As I proceed with my commentary it may be worthwhile to ask, once again, a question I will ask now: Is Frank Lombard’s age the most relevant demographic variable in relation to the charges to which he agreed to plead guilty?
“Authorities on Tuesday filed a criminal information in the case, indicating that they were negotiating a plea and didn't want to pursue an indictment against Lombard. According to the filing, Lombard coerced a minor, identified only as ‘M.L.,’ into engaging in sexual conduct so that Lombard could transmit a live video of it over the Internet.”
And now we have another mention of the “minor” followed by the assertion that the criminal information only identifies the minor as “M.L.” But WRAL knows precisely what the “L” in “M.L.” means. It means Lombard. It is his adopted black son.But to acknowledge that “M.L” is the son, not daughter, of Frank Lombard is to acknowledge that Lombard is gay. And the Gods of Diversity frown upon the notion that males can be victims of rape and that the perpetrators can be homosexual men.
And to acknowledge the race of the victim is to suggest that homosexuals might be capable of committing hate crimes, even if they do not play Lacrosse. Hate crimes legislation is supposed to protect, not prosecute, gay men.
And, finally, there should be no mention (yet) that his son was adopted. The public, when confronted with such information, might use it to form dangerous opinions – such as the opinion that gay men should not be adopting little boys.
According to the news media, the general public is not capable of processing all of this information. People in the news media are the only ones who can be trusted with all of the benefits (and responsibilities) that attach to the full disclosure of information.
“Lombard was arrested in June after authorities said Washington police caught him in a sting operation soliciting an adult to have sex with his adopted 5-year-old child.”
This is certainly odd. WRAL finally mentions that Frank Lombard’s child was adopted. But they fail to mention his sex or his race. In fact, the way this paragraph is worded, it is not entirely clear that the incident leading to his arrest is the incident leading to the information – or that it led to any formal criminal charges.
I hope this clarifies any ambiguity. I will withhold further details.
“Duke fired Lombard in July from his position as associate director of the university's Center for Health Policy.”
I think we can now see why WRAL has withheld certain relevant information. Lombard was a high-level administrator in the area of health policy. To reveal his sexual orientation would raise certain questions, which might violate someone’s right to feel comfortable at all times. For example, “Are certain sexual practices both detrimental to individual health and prevalent in the gay community?” And, “Could such practices, if widely adopted (no pun intended), be detrimental to the public health?” Finally, “Is a homosexual man the best candidate available to help run a Center for Public Health and teach a course about AIDS at Duke University?”
According to the people at WRAL, and many at Duke University, Frank Lombard is no ordinary white racist. Nor is he an ordinary white rapist. He is gay and entitled to special treatment in the court of public opinion. To refuse to treat him differently would promote hatred and discrimination.
And that would send a dangerous message to small children. Above all else, we must protect small children from danger.