✔ Fact Checker here.
The late US Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan, sociologist at Harvard, MIT and Wesleyan, had a thought that is appropriate this morning.
He spoke of "defining deviancy downward." One article he wrote was entitled "How We've Become Accustomed to Alarming Levels of Crime and Destructive Behavior." He often talked of how, with increasing levels of violence, some crimes seemed normal and only extraordinary crimes brought great revulsion.
Just a year ago, when Durham on Duke violence such as this weekend's shooting and robbery occurred, the Chronicle would immediately post a bulletin.
Now we wait until Monday morning for a story, featuring Larry Moneta weighing in with an excuse that the e-mail system may not have functioned right to inform everyone immediately of great danger in our community. An e-mail required by federal law, by the way.
Chronicle, did you think to ask El-Mo how he discovered this breakdown and what he is doing to fix it. El-Mo, the first e-mail did not get out, did you try a second? (I seem to recall, and do not have time to do research now, that on an earlier crime the e-mail system also failed)
This weekend, we saw a very very serious crime. A student was shot twice. Yes with a BB gun, but a weapon that could blind him if it hit him in the eye, kill him if it hit him in the heart. We can only be grateful the wounds are in his leg. This time.
A student shot. And that doesn't even make the Chronicle's headline or lead paragraph which speak only of a robbery.
And I shall make another point, even though I am sure I will be attacked by the usual suspects who say I blame everything on Brodhead.
Where has he been during this violence. Not only this episode, but others. Has anyone heard our President speak? At the very least, he might say while the thugs did not kill anyone this time, "what they did do was bad enough."
Chronicle, you bear a particular responsibility this morning, on a campus that has recent memories of a graduate student killed, an undergraduate shot with a bullet and now a third student shot twice with a BB gun. Where is your investigation into Duke Police? To the best of my knowledge -- and I can be corrected -- this latest crime occurred precisely in an area that we were assured was going to get increased Duke Police presence.
I ask again: Chronicle have you checked on these increased patrols to determine if they even exist. Have you checked to determine where these extra cops are coming from, promised to the 9th avenue area, to the Trinity Park and Trinity Heights area, and most recently to Central Campus.
Have you inquired why we do not have decoy cops at work? And if we do, why we do not publicize this to scare the bastards away.
This is the job of a newspaper, not to assemble its staff and party on the third floor of Flowers Building.
Get out there and confront Mr Trask, who has direct responsibility for Duke Police: does he still believe we should reduce the number of fully trained, armed professional officers, in favor of cheaper security guards hired by the day from a private company.
✔Fact Checker is not happy.