Wednesday, July 19, 2006
Scratch A Wingnut, Find A Plagiarist?
First, Ben Domenech. Next, Ann Coulter. Now, Ralph "Damien Thorn" Reed -- who just lost his bid to be the GOP candidate for Georgia's lieutenant governor -- has been revealed to be a less-than-original thinker:
On April 14, 1983, Reed wrote a column for The Red & Black student newspaper attacking the late Mohandas K. Gandhi. Entitled "Gandhi: Ninny of the 20th Century," it denounced the motion picture Gandhi for its favorable treatment of the life of the pacifist leader of the Indian independence movement. A graduate student complained to the editor of The Red & Black that Reed had plagiarized a Commentary article by film reviewer Richard Grenier. After an investigation, Reed was fired from the paper. Reed wrote a final column acknowledging his failure to cite sources but accusing the graduate student who complained of "the most shocking, profane form of personal attack I can imagine." (Nina J. Easton, Gang of Five: Leaders at the Center of the Conservative Crusade, page 130-31)Over in one of the Eschaton comments threads, we find this bit of personal testimony:
By the way the graduate student mentioned in Ralph's plagiariam incident was me. The "investigation" into the incident consisted of a phone call from the editor of The Red and Black to Ralph who admitted the plagiarism and was fired on the spot. I hand delivered a letter outlining the plagiarism and including a copy of the Commentary article to the Red and Black offices. Less than 2 hours later I received a call from the R&B telling me they had discussed the matter with Ralph, he had admitted the plagiarism, and was fired on the spot.Charming, eh? That's Our Ralph.
My letter to the R&B only discussed the plagiarism issue and was incredibly judicious. Ralph's politics (and mine) were not mentioned or implied in any way. I remember Ralph attacked me personally in his response. This pretty much sums up the entire right wing approach. Attack people who reasonably point out your shortcomings in the most vicious terms possible with no regard for the truth.
Ralph has been a disgrace for a long time. It didn't just happen overnight.
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