"He is looking forward to having his day in court finally in a public forum so the public can hear what this witch hunt was all about," Lane said.
"We had scholars from Nova Scotia to New Mexico questioning his academic bona fides," McConnellogue said.
He really wants the jury to have the last word? Then why are he and his publicity-addicted lawyer still working overtime to try the case in the media?
by itinerantb on Yesterday, 6:56 am
WARD CHURCHILL IS A NATIONAL TREASURE! He is a fierce defender of your civil rights. He expresses free speach even in the form of plagiarism. He is controversial only because everyone is so darn sensitivie these days. As far as being Indian, just look at his hair and some of his belts...duh, of course he's Indian.
by opinionatedcolo on Yesterday, 9:00 am
What is most fascinating is that in their public statements Churchill and his lawyers focus on the first amendment issues and almost never discuss whether Churchill actually committed plagiarism and academic misconduct. Seems like they (almost) admit that he is a liar and an intellectual thief, but they complain about how he got caught.
I will always have concerns about professors being fired for presenting unpopular opinions and in most cases I would support the professor. However, Churchill is so clearly not a scholar and such an obvious fraud in every personal and professional way that no matter how he came to the attention of the authorities, his flaws should have gotten him fired. The bottom line is that those who should not have a position in the first place should likely realize it and try to at least maintain some low profile. Churchill, who has a totally unjustified opinion of himself, just could not do that. He is truly reaping what he sowed.
by ottilie2 on Yesterday, 7:31 pm
yeah--The newspapers keep writing 'fabrication and plagiarism'. If you actually look up the list of supposed incidents of plagiarism, it is really weak, and there is almost nothing there. You should look up the report from the university. For example, in one case Churchill submitted an essay from an environmental group he was affiliated with in canada to a magazine, and the magazine print it with his name on it, when he didn't say he wrote it. Then there were other cases of editing errors, where he had no incentive to take credit for someone's work in a minor collaboratively written document.
The one thing that people are still arguing about is the general allotment act and whether the Mandan indian tribe caught smallpox from blankets that the military gave them, or whether members of the tribe stole the blankets and then spread the disease against the warnings of the army. On Churchill's side, there is a 1830s era bill which listed 'friendly' tribes which were to receive the smallpox vaccine that the army had, while other tribes (including the Mandan) were considered unfriendly because they didn't sign a treaty yet, and were not to receive vaccine. Also, there is supporting proof of written letters by early colonists calling for some of the northeastern tribes to be deliberately given smallpox during the french and indian wars. There are no cases where Churchill copied lines of text without quotations and whatnot.
CU first investigated Churchill's 9/11 essay and then investigated his other writings. Were Churchill's academic mistakes serious enough to warrant his firing? Or were they a pretext to fire a controversial figure for his opinions?
I've served on a jury three times. In my experience, juries don't decide matters of fact. For the most part, both sides agree on the facts.
Rather, juries are given two interpretations of the situation and asked to decide which one they like better. E.g., "Churchill did X, Y, and Z. Are these legitimate reasons for firing him or a mere pretext?"
The jury will hope for clear guidance from the court. E.g., "X, Y, and Z are (or are not) firing offenses." But the court will respond, "It's up to you to decide what a firing offense is." The jurors will then vote based on their personal and political prejudices.
Given how unpopular Churchill is, I doubt the jurors will want to find for him. More likely they'll want to find for the university. Most likely it'll be a hung jury, with most jurors voting for the university and a few holdouts voting for Churchill. (Being a liberal, of course, I was a holdout or potential holdout on all three of my trials.)
If Churchill loses, I can't imagine that he'll accept the verdict. Rather, he'll say the system is corrupt and a leftist like him can't get a fair trial. If I were a betting man, I'd put money on Churchill's not letting the jury have the "last word" on his suit.
For more on the subject, see Churchill Goes to Trial.
Below: "I accept a trial by jury, but I don't accept the outcome unless I win."