Watching Larry Moneta, a good man, get torn apart by a national audience is as bad as anything I see in the Charlotte or Atlanta immigration court, where I practice, as unfair and grotesque as any forced apology/public shaming I've witnessed on Chinese state television while in China, where I studied and worked after graduating from Duke, and as vicious as any ethnically charged political attack I saw in pre- and post-war Yugoslavia, where my family fled from in the early 1990s.

I am disgusted by it all, quite frankly, as Larry has gone above and beyond the call of duty for innumerable causes, immigrant rights among them, for the fifteen years I've known him. He has continually taken on the burden of leadership, which has often meant putting his name and reputation behind ideas that touched on contentious debates. He is a person, in short, like all of the people in this story, that deserves empathy, due process, and the benefit of the doubt before his life and humanity are declared forfeit by anonymous masses. 

Has Larry made mistakes? Undoubtedly, but that comes with the territory in a job where important decisions have to be made daily. 

Was this incident a product of Larry's mistake? Perhaps, but it's hard to tell, as his actions were one of many in a chain that led to two firings, and the information so far, though salaciously reported, is far from complete.

Whatever your hot take, there is nothing here that comes close to signaling a green light to tear down Larry's life. And make no mistake, this is what mob justice in the age of the internet human search and destroy engine has become all too adept at doing, and it is what is being done to Larry at this very moment. Think carefully about what this means, because you or your family may be next up to face the guillotine.

Damjan Denoble, Trinity '07, is a Durham lawyer.