Wednesday, June 4, 2014

New Amazon Review by "clifton" of THE PRICE OF SILENCE and Hershel Parker's Comment on It

A new Amazon one star review for William D. Cohan’s THE PRICE OF SILENCE
June 4, 2014 By clifton
This review is from: The Price of Silence: The Duke Lacrosse Scandal, the Power of the Elite, and the Corruption of Our Great Universities (Hardcover)
The conviction of Darryl Howard was overturned last week, alleging prosecutorial misconduct, once again by none other than disbarred DA Mike Nifong. Mr. Howard has served almost two decades in prison. This is the very same prosecutor that author Cohan has been repeatedly claiming(in his interviews) that his extensive research found to be an "honorable" man with a "pristine career."

Author Cohan believes that Nifong was disbarred on a "red herring" and that he only made "mistakes not misconduct." Having read the opinion in the Darryl Howard case and having read a great deal about this case, I find in my opinion the author's conclusions to be incorrect if not bizarre.

Author Cohan has also been stating in interviews that the accuser, Crystal Mangum is "clear thinking" and that he believes her that "something happened." Ms. Mangum had troubled life long before that fateful night, including an arrest for trying to run down a police officer and stealing a taxi. She has since gone on trial for arson and later been convicted of second degree murder.

Author Cohan claims there is an "incredible amount of evidence" that "something happened" but then he laments that he "cannot know" what or who, etc. did what to whom. He admits "no one can know." This "incredible amount of evidence" does not appear in his book. He also admits that he hasn't seen the case file or even talked to the state investigators. Sounds like the vaguest of smears to say you can be sure of something that you admit you can't know.

A nonfiction author's book rests on the judgement and credibility of its author. Author Cohan's many public statements cast doubt on both and also on his book.
P.S. Today, KC Johnson has an interesting piece on Cohan's last minute deletions from his book.

My comment on this review:
Clifton in his postscript refers to KC Johnson's piece in today's Durham-in-Wonderland, a masterpiece of textual scholarship. How Johnson gained access to this pre-publication version of the book is still his secret, but he quotes lavishly and tellingly from it, demonstrating how Cohan was systematically removing anything negative about the rogue prosecutor Michael Nifong (disbarred and imprisoned [for a night]). Cohan willfully, deliberately revised to make Nifong into a modern Man of Sorrows, "spit-roasted" by evil adherents of the probably criminal lacrosse players ("something happened") and their high-priced lawyers. The lacrosse players, of course, were INNOCENT of the accusation of the stripper and INNOCENT of all charges Nifong made against them. The revisions which KC Johnson charts makes Cohan not just deluded about the glories of Nifong's character and the depth of his undeserved sufferings--no, the revisions make Cohan into a writer who systematically concealed evidence about the misconduct of his hero. Please, everyone, read Johnson. You can do it by going to the bibliography in the Wiki site for THE PRICE OF SILENCE. I don't mean the Wikipedia site for William D. Cohan but the site for this particular book.

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