William Katz:  Urgent Agenda

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PATHETIC – AT 10:28 A.M. ET:  Ken Burns used to be a somebody, as a result of his excellent "Civil War" series.  It's been downhill from there. 

Burns is, first and foremost, a propagandist of the left, obsessed with race and with little else.   He has made a documentary about the Central Park jogger case, in which some black youths were imprisoned for raping and beating a jogger in Central Park almost senseless.  It took years for her to recover.

Ultimately, it was determined that the boys were probably innocent and that, based on DNA, someone else, who later went to prison for another crime, was the guilty party.  The boys were legally exonerated, although they had served their sentences.  Whether they were actually innocent is another story, and a controversial one.  The New York Police Department stands by the original convictions.  There have been suggestions that the exonerations were more political than legal.

Whatever the facts, Burns is out hyping his documentary.  In the course of doing so, he made this statement, reported by Breitbart:

And you can also compare the Central Park Five to the Duke University lacrosse players, three rich white boys who were mildly inconvenienced by rape charges that proved to be false. In no time the prosecutor of that case was fired, disbarred, and put in jail, and the three ended up getting a huge settlement.

COMMENT:  That tells me pretty much everything I need to know about Ken Burns, and his view of justice.  So there were "three rich white boys" who were "mildly inconvenienced" by false rape charges.

Incredible.

F. Lee Bailey once said that no one ever gets over being charged with murder.  The same is true of rape.  For several years these "three rich white boys" lived a nightmare, under a charge that could have put them away for the rest of their lives.  What was particularly outrageous was that there was no evidence against them, just the charge made by a lowlife with a disturbing background.  (She has since been convicted of serious felonies.) 

The Duke case started to unravel in the first day, when one of the "three rich white boys" produced evidence that proved he wasn't even there.  Didn't matter.  These were white boys, the accuser was a black woman, and Duke is a very trendy place.  The boys were thrown out of school and 80 Duke faculty members signed a statement calling, in effect, for a legal lynching.

Burns, who has difficulty with facts, also errs in saying that "in no time" the prosecutor of that case was fired..."  In fact, it took many months for the facts to come out.  As far as the prosecutor serving jail time, he served one day.  Any settlement the boys received cannot make up for the fact that, whenever their name is Googled, for the rest of their lives, this case will come up.  They will always be under a cloud.

Burns is becoming an embarrassment.  His brother, Ric Burns, isn't much better, by the way.  He made a documentary about Columbia University, his alma mater, that was so trendily left as to be painful. 

Slow Burn.

December 12, 2012