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Coleman, Kasibhatla criticism puzzling

It puzzles us that professors James Coleman and Prasad Kasibhatla used the occasion of criticism directed toward President Richard Brodhead's apology to condemn our work on the lacrosse case-since the only one of us to comment publicly on the remarks (KC Johnson) praised the president for "a powerful and emotional address, one that touched on several important points in an impressive fashion."

It equally puzzles us that the duo attacked our characterization of the Coleman Committee report. One or both of us have given similar characterizations of the report, in print, no fewer than 23 times since May 2, 2006. Never did Professor Coleman (with whom we have spoken or e-mailed on multiple occasions) challenge our description, much less in the harsh tone employed in the Chronicle letter. Since our book directly quotes from the report's section dealing with the lacrosse players' alcohol-related arrests, it seems peculiar to suggest we overlooked this point.

And while we are not surprised to receive criticism from defenders of the academic status quo, it seems unusual to portray a book with more than 1,000 sourcenotes as based on a "tragic rush to judgment" regarding faculty activists' behavior. Professors Coleman and Kasibhatla presented no specific evidence to support their claim, but we share their commitment that all facts, positive and negative, be revealed. Therefore, we invite them to join us in calling for a comprehensive review, modeled on the Coleman Committee's balanced and commendable investigation of the lacrosse team, of the faculty's response to the lacrosse case.

KC Johnson

Co-author, "Until Proven Innocent"

"Durham-in-Wonderland" blog

Stuart Taylor

Co-author, "Until Proven Innocent"