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U-Va. lacrosse player's many warning signs

The question has to be asked: Is it something about athletes? Something about entitled college athletes? Something about lacrosse?

George Huguely V, a 22-year-old University of Virginia lacrosse player, is charged with murdering his one-time girlfriend, Yeardley Love, herself a lacrosse player. Huguely, according to a police report, confessed to kicking in Love's bedroom door, shaking her, and hitting her head against the wall.

I don't think for a moment that lacrosse made him do it. But it's fair to ask whether the special benefits accorded a star athlete on the nation's No. 1 ranked team contributed to an eyes-averted attitude toward this young man's problems. Because for all his charmed existence, Huguely seems to have had a wild, even dangerous, side that went unaddressed until too late.

A 2006 Washington Post story, referring to the elite, all-boy's private high school that Huguely then attended, praised him as "Landon's Top Prankster." It quoted Huguely bragging about how he had filched the coach's car keys, drove up to the practice and sat chatting in the driver's seat until the coach realized what was up.

Another time, Huguely bet an assistant coach that the assistant’s fiancee would kiss him if he made a big play. "He walked off the field and said to the team, 'What's (her) number?'" the head coach recalled.

There's no direct line from arrogance to violence, or from macho jock culture to brutality. But Huguely's trajectory includes more disturbing data points. In Florida, where his family has a $2 million vacation home, he was charged in 2007 with underage possession of alcohol. The next year, police were summoned after Huguely got into a "very heated" argument with his father aboard their 40-foot fishing boat, dove into the ocean and tried to swim the quarter-mile to shore.

Most troubling, Huguely was arrested near a fraternity house at Washington & Lee University in Lexington, Va., in 2008 for public swearing, intoxication and resisting arrest. After being detained, Huguely "used colorful statements such as: I'll kill all you… I am not doing a damn thing you say… I want to talk to your supervisor now,'" according to a statement by the Lexington Police Department.

The arresting officer, R.L. Moss, said she had to use her Taser to subdue Huguely -- although he did not remember that afterward. "He was by far the most rude, most hateful and most combative college kid I ever dealt with," Moss told The New York Times.

Huguely received a 60-day suspended sentence, six months probation, a fine, and was required to perform community service and attend substance abuse education. You have to wonder: Would a poor drop-out without access to a pricey lawyer have gotten a tougher sentence? Would a few weeks -- a few days, even -- behind bars have done Huguely some good? Did someone ask: Is this a kid with an anger problem? University officials say they never learned about the incident.

And just a few months ago, The Washington Post reports, University of North Carolina lacrosse players intervened to separate Huguely from Love at a party on the Charlottesville campus.

Where were Huguely's teammates during all of this? Where was his family?

College students drink, sometimes to excess. They act wild and do dumb things, athletes or not. They have tortured romances. Almost none of them kill their girlfriends. Those who do aren't necessarily star athletes.

When I was in college, a fellow student, Bonnie Garland, was murdered by her estranged boyfriend, a recent Yale graduate who smashed her skull with a claw hammer in the bedroom of her Scarsdale, N.Y., home. The narrative in that tragedy was nearly the opposite of the Love murder: not privilege versus privilege but a boy from the barrio of Los Angeles who found himself out of place in the Ivy League.

There are many routes to doing crazy, terrible things. It would be facile to blame Huguely's conduct on lacrosse, but it's legitimate to wonder whether an atmosphere of entitlement and immunity from ordinary rules were contributing factors.

It's impossible to read the Huguely story without thinking back to the Duke lacrosse case, where the rape charges seemed shoddy from the start -- but the glimpse of boorish, alcohol-fueled lacrosse culture seems instructive. At Virginia, eight of 41 players on the Virginia lacrosse team have been charged with alcohol-related offenses.

As I wrote at the time of the Duke arrests, "These don't sound like young men you'd want your daughter to date."

By Ruth Marcus  | May 6, 2010; 5:04 PM ET
Categories:  Marcus  | Tags:  Ruth Marcus  
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Comments

Being wealthy or an elite athlete may breed entitlement. Yet it certainly does not breed a murderer. If found guilty, what we have here is a sad failure of both society and those who surrounded Huguely. A world that makes women the object and tolerates an intolerance towards women on the most superficial and serious of levels is to blame. The onus is not on a sport, Ms. Marcus, but on our society as a whole.

Posted by: AsstToTheRegionalMgr | May 6, 2010 5:40 PM | Report abuse

Ruth,

Crimes of passion - as this appears to be - have happened since the dawn of mankind and will happen for ever more. This had nothing to do with athletics in general or lacrosse in particular, so please stop trying to play amateur psychologist.

As far as the Duke Lacrosse Frame, the only crime that occurred was the one perpetrated by the Durham Police, Mike Nifong, the Duke University administration, and other Durham area officials.

It was an attempted lynching, a crime which the Washington Post and others in the media heartily participated in. You all were right in the big middle of it. If you like I can dig up the pertinent archives from back then.

Walter Abbott

Posted by: wabbott | May 6, 2010 5:48 PM | Report abuse

If I recall the Duke case correctly the person who was really alcohol fueled that night was the alleged victim who turned out to not be the victim of anything. I don't know much about lacrosse players and they may drink too much but in my experience college students in general tend to imbibe more than they should. I was guilty of that myself but luckily most of us survive it.

Posted by: calgrl75 | May 6, 2010 6:14 PM | Report abuse

Amen Ruth. ATTRGM - Blaming "society" is a cop out. Anyone who thinks there is no link between "jock culture" and violence to women has never been in a locker room. Not saying all jocks are abusers, just that the culture tends to breed a particular attitude towards women. Just ask Lawrence Taylor.

Walter - true "crimes of passion" have some provocation, like catching your spouse with a paramour, or being assaulted. The facts, at this juncture, point more to a premeditated and particularly vicious attack.

One point no one has mentioned: What about the parents? Everyone is talking about how the University did know about the Lexington arrest and conviction. Surely the parents knew. What does it say about the parents of a student on a major university athletic team who would allow their son, after being convicted for resisting arrest and public intoxication and sentenced to suspended jail time, to stay on the lacrosse team? Wouldn't want to interrupt little Johnny's sports career, would we.

Posted by: HeywoodJablomey | May 6, 2010 6:50 PM | Report abuse

You suggest that there is no direct line from arrogance to violence, yet you explicitly draw one form affluence to arrogance to violence. It seems part of a larger and increasingly loud discourse in pop culture and social commentary that I find disturbing and just as ignorant as any other bigotry. "Affluence be damned," it suggests and if you haven't "lived the struggle" you dont have value nor can you engage in social justice yourself, having not been a part of social injustice. The only thing affluence knows is itself, you say. And that identity should be looked down upon and warrants brushing aside upper middle and upper class young men and women, for they dont know injustice. Obviously, this ideology is intrinsically connected to contemporary constructions of racial categories and I dont wish to expand on that here. But I do beg to ask, how much apologizing Im supposed to do. How many times to light-skinned upper class males have to apologize for who we are? What if we do work hard? What if we really havent been spoonfed like you paint it? (my family doesnt own a 40-Yacht, by the way, i get seasick anyway.) What if we are engaged with questions of social injustice? What do you want from me?

Posted by: dkovacs | May 6, 2010 7:31 PM | Report abuse

Ms. Marcus -
A fantastic piece, which I applaud.

To Mr. Abbott -
First: I was a female athlete at the University of Virginia, where on several occasions male scholarship athletes tried to force me into inappropriate sexual situations. These young men had been given everything they ever wanted - while in high school - while wooed by top Universities and by many female groupies along the way. Therefore, when a woman turned them down, they would become extremely rude and outraged. Not every male athlete acted this way, but enough did to make me very cautious.

Second: You completely miss the point that Ms. Marcus was making about the Duke Lacrosse players. The point she was trying to make is, what respectible young man gets drunk with their buddies and calls strippers (hookers) to their home? Maybe for a bachelor party (although that is still repulsive), but for just a regular Saturday night? I don't know if you have a daughter, but if you do, I am sure you would not want her to go out with a boy who consorts with strippers and hookers. That was Ms. Marcus's point.

What George Huguely did goes beyond the typcial prep school arrogance or scholarship athlete entitlement, but we cannot ignor those as factors that contributed to his behavior. And if we do, we could end up seeing another murder of another innocent girl. Remember Robert Chambers?

Posted by: CocoC1 | May 6, 2010 7:34 PM | Report abuse

Ruth: your last paragraph suggests two ideas, to me: first, the accused sought situations that provided some immunity and protection; second, class does not play a role other than to provide additional immunity and protection, one way or the other (if they are 'from the ghetto', it's seen as being 'part of ghetto life'; if they are 'from privilege' it's seen as 'the protection of privilege' etc). I would argue that George H. was "born bad" and that there's probably some "early abuse" that reinforced the worst elements of him. His risk-taking side has "psychopathy/sociopathy" written all over it, diddo the sweetness and charm, all used to conceal the other side - the side that came out in public confrontations with the victim and her murder. On the Charlottesville Hook's website, buried within much of the reader commentary, there is a note from a 'jane smith' that suggests that both lacrosse teams (men and female) knew some abusive aspects of the relationship. I am sure that someone within those teams even spoke up about them while they happenned. I would say that this is an event where a troubling character exploited all of the advantages of their situation, hid within some parts of the system, never got caught because of bad information sharing (why again didn't the police departments in Virginia or Florida inform the University of Virginia?). I am also certain that the more digging that is done, the more the outside world will discover about this extremely disturbing relationship. Sorority sisters will come forward, members of UVa's lacrosse team will come forward - maybe the victim's own journal will emerge or something of the sort that will say something. UVa has many emergency hotlines: I am certain that someone spoke with them at some point about this. Look at the case of the radicalized physician who killed all those soldiers in Texas - the warning signs regarding him were flashing red! It all points to, in my opinion, organizations' internal corrective mechanisms incorrectly identifying a real threat and passing it off as "troubling" but passing it off nonetheless. People knew something was wrong. The wrong authorities were involved until too late. This guy got away with this because his example had to show how an exception would exploit all the rules. He didnt have to, but that's what it shows. No one talked to the right people until the very end, and now it's too late.

Posted by: millerandrewj | May 6, 2010 8:08 PM | Report abuse

This seems to be a case that cries out for examination of the assailant's past interactions with girls and women, going back to grade school.

How did he treat his (girl) classmates when he hit adolescence? This behavior (treating women like crap) doesn't happen overnight. In his mind, his bad actions may have been reinforced by the culture of acceptance granted to athletes, but most athletes don't hit girls and women.

I dare say that the sense of "entitlement" people refer to is a fact of life for many in Chevy Chase. The majority of residents there have worked hard for their entitlement and privilege. I don't buy into any theory which might suggest physical abuse of women is "accepted" in Chevy Chase more than any place else. However, that money does entitle the kids to being shielded from appropriate consequences at times. Unfortunately, someone had to die for this discussion to start.

There is more to this story than meets the eye. We will never fully know why this happened.

The bottom line is that women and girls must be more diligent and, less embarrassed, about standing up for themselves. Period. Victims need to find a way to get help -- I don't know how, but it has to happen.

Posted by: dcquilter | May 6, 2010 8:46 PM | Report abuse

Ruth: your last paragraph suggests two ideas, to me: first, the accused sought situations that provided some immunity and protection; second, class does not play a role other than to provide additional immunity and protection, one way or the other (if they are 'from the ghetto', it's seen as being 'part of ghetto life'; if they are 'from privilege' it's seen as 'the protection of privilege' etc). I would argue that George H. was "born bad" and that there's probably some "early abuse" that reinforced the worst elements of him. His risk-taking side has "psychopathy/sociopathy" written all over it, diddo the sweetness and charm, all used to conceal the other side - the side that came out in public confrontations with the victim and her murder. On the Charlottesville Hook's website, buried within much of the reader commentary, there is a note from a 'jane smith' that suggests that both lacrosse teams (men and female) knew some abusive aspects of the relationship. I am sure that someone within those teams even spoke up about them while they happenned. I would say that this is an event where a troubling character exploited all of the advantages of their situation, hid within some parts of the system, never got caught because of bad information sharing (why again didn't the police departments in Virginia or Florida inform the University of Virginia?). I am also certain that the more digging that is done, the more the outside world will discover about this extremely disturbing relationship. Sorority sisters will come forward, members of UVa's lacrosse team will come forward - maybe the victim's own journal will emerge or something of the sort that will say something. UVa has many emergency hotlines: I am certain that someone spoke with them at some point about this. Look at the case of the radicalized physician who killed all those soldiers in Texas - the warning signs regarding him were flashing red! It all points to, in my opinion, organizations' internal corrective mechanisms incorrectly identifying a real threat and passing it off as "troubling" but passing it off nonetheless. People knew something was wrong. The wrong authorities were involved until too late. This guy got away with this because his example had to show how an exception would exploit all the rules. He didnt have to, but that's what it shows. No one talked to the right people until the very end, and now it's too late.

Posted by: millerandrewj | May 6, 2010 9:34 PM | Report abuse

UVa -- please stop letting in affluent out-of-state students and focus on educating your own population. These prep school kids bring their arrogance, selfishness, and bad behavior with them. Educate Virginians, not spoiled, troubled imports.

Posted by: ChicagoIllinois | May 6, 2010 10:30 PM | Report abuse

Ms. Marcus, I know it's your role "to raise questions", but I have to challenge some of the issues you raised...college and high school sports may have an entitlement problem, lacrosse may have a rowdy on and off the field stereotype, but as person who played several sports for years, including lacrosse...I've never heard of any study detailing how sports would contribute to off the field violence, abuse of women, or murder.
The tragic murder of Yeardley Love, a lacrosse player, by another lacrosse shouldn't lead armchair psychologists to impugn a great sport that can teach players about teamwork, discipline, and hard work. Sometimes life is cruel, and even horrible things happen to good people. For example I had a spinal cord injury when I was 17, changing my life..sometimes life is cruel.

Posted by: Civilius | May 6, 2010 10:30 PM | Report abuse

I'm sure, when someone investigates further, there will be some tie between the Huguely family and the higher ups (court system, Senate, Governors, etc.) that helped to wash his many run ins with the law "under the table". Those who live and swim in these circles, always have an "out" when they break the law or find themselves "surprisingly" in the middle of the judicial system. Can't wait to see how this one plays out in the courts. In the mean time, the Love family is going through the worst pain anyone could ever feel.

Posted by: SandieL | May 6, 2010 11:05 PM | Report abuse

I am very much bothered not by this article but by all this blame and talk about GH wealth and money being a cover and a reason for him having this very seedy side to him. How is it ok to make vast generalization about what lax does to young men, or what wealth does, or what preppy schools do to people. That the sense of entitlement is what causes them to do these things. That that is why a blind eye is turned. It's racist! Point blank. I do not know why it is ok for people to say "Oh good finally a rich white kid, jock gets what he deserves!"
If this was two black people from the ghetto, (which probably wouldn't make the national news anyway) and posters started saying things like "all those poor black people, they all have no morals and join gangs.' There would be absolute outrage and people would be SCREAMING racism. They would be livid that, and say not all black people are the same. However I bet if you looked at national statistics there is a significantly higher instances of black on black crime, then white on white crime. So why is it when its black on black making generalized about black culture is racist, but when its two white on white privledged jocks its suddenly ok to make gross generalization on their background and sport?

Posted by: marthamoxley | May 6, 2010 11:18 PM | Report abuse

Aside from the revulsion which overcomes one over the actions of George Huguely V, the ultimate question remains: Where were his parents, and what did they do about his many transgressions over the years? Nowhere have I read that Mr. and Mrs. Huguely, George's parents, are blind and deaf. Certainly they knew that their son had a violent temper. Did they get help for their son, or did they choose to ignore the facts? How could they allow 22 years of this behavior to go by with, as far as we know, no professional help?

My heart cries for Yeardley Love and her family. Yeardley did not deserve to meet the fate she met at the hands of a spoiled, arrogant, alcohol drinking jock who would get his own way no matter the outcome. In all of the years it took for Huguely's personality to develop, did anyone ever tell him no? Did anyone, other than law enforcement personnel, ever stop this strong-willed killer BEFORE he killed? I would ask that question of his parents. It is too easy for people with money to lord it over school personnel, even law personnel, but what did the parents do? Were they so busy leading their priveleged existence that they swept George Huguely V's behavior under the carpet?

The only person that we know so far who told George V "no" was Yeardley -- and look what she got in return. What an absolute pity! What an AVOIDABLE pity!

Now the Huguely family will use their fortune to try to convince a jury that poor little Georgie #5 has a "problem." I'll say he has a problem -- one that began many years ago and worsened with every year of his life -- namely, his parents! Were they so busy at their $2 million vacation home or preoccupied by other worldly activities to discipline their son, to seek help, to do whatever possible, by any means possible, to straighten out their son's behavior?

Posted by: MilesYPendletonIII | May 7, 2010 1:53 AM | Report abuse

A stretch. Does not compute. You'd be better off discussing the of origins of hip-hop "lifestyle" that derive from prison life and the seeming endorsement of it by the professional sports leagues, esp. the NBA.

Posted by: namfos | May 7, 2010 8:59 AM | Report abuse

Like Huguely, I went to Landon and played sports there. Like Huguely, I grew up in an atmosphere of wealth and privilege in Chevy Chase. Like Huguely, I had a terribly difficult and reckless adolescence. But that had nothing to do Landon, athletics or my parents' wealth. It had to do with the way I was raised and things that happened to me. I suspect that is also the case with Huguely.

Posted by: jb505 | May 7, 2010 9:38 AM | Report abuse

Huguely has a record of abusive behavior toward women -- the police officer who had to taser him and now the ex-girlfriend who died from it. The people around him can close ranks and cover for him all they want. It won't make a difference. And 20 years isn't enough.

Posted by: newsjunkie56 | May 7, 2010 10:33 AM | Report abuse

This is an unspeakable tragedy for both families. A beautiful accomplished young woman lost her life in a horrific manner and we all grieve. The Huguely's loss is tragic as well. One family will never see their daughter again and the other family will live the torturas life of having a child in prison. George V obviously has significant problems that may or may not have been addressed by his family. Parenting is not easy, sometimes hard decisions have to be made to help save a child. Providing an environment that gives children opportunities to achieve their goals is every parents' hope. It seems that George V accomplished that externally as a star athelete and student but was unable to cultivate his internal being. Yet Yeardley according to friends was an "angel". Good verses evil a theme that runs through all aspects of life. The Love and Huguely families had great hopes for their children and now one is gone and the other will spend his life or a good part of it in prison. This is a tragedy that weighs heavily on one's heart.

Posted by: dmooregold1 | May 7, 2010 11:58 AM | Report abuse

I grew up in Chevy Chase and live there as an adult with my children. I went to a prep school and an "exclusive" college. It is vastly unfair to paint with a broad brush and brand everyone that has a connection to any of these places as privileged, spoiled, connected or somehow above the law. There are all kinds of people that live in Chevy Chase (most of the houses are not mansions)and all types that go to private schools. Do they, on average, have more money than the average Americans - yes. That doesn't mean that they don't have morals, don't try as hard as they can to raise their kids right and expect that money can solve everything. This kid obviously had issues and these issues were not addressed. That likely means a failure at many levels. People can go wrong regardless of their background or what sport they played.

Posted by: washwave | May 7, 2010 11:58 AM | Report abuse

The source of all the described behavior can be summed up in a word: entitlement.

Posted by: PatC1 | May 7, 2010 5:08 PM | Report abuse

I think the source of each of his violent episodes is Alcohol. Alcohol causes more problems on college campuses than marijuana, yet marijuana offenses causes suspension or expulsion on most campuses (particularly in VA).

I have never heard of a person going into a violent, jealous rage when they smoked a joint or two.

Instead of continuing the prohibition of marijuana we should look at how alcohol offenses are handled on campuses (and off campus for under-age students).

Posted by: researcher2 | May 7, 2010 6:07 PM | Report abuse

Ruth,

Do not blame this tragedy on Lacrosse! You have made sweeping generalization about 'the boorish, alcohol-fueled lacrosse culture' which is both insulting and demeaning to all these collegiate athletes. College kids drink alcohol thats a fact, and it doesn't matter if you're in a sport or not. There are over 7400 Men's College Lacrosse Athletes throughout the 3 divisions and you have taken one, George V, and assumed all are the same. This student had problems that had nothing to do with Lacrosse and more to do with his own character. No matter the sport, college, socioeconomic status,or age this type of crime has been committed in the past by angry, dysfunctional individuals.
He needed help and the warning signs were there, time and time again.
As a mother of a college lacrosse player one hour from UVA I can tell you that there are plenty of lacrosse players I have met throughtout the years that are respectful, caring, conscientious,and good students that are athletes who just happen to love the game of lacrosse.

Posted by: laxmom8 | May 7, 2010 6:11 PM | Report abuse

When such a crime involves men and women whose stations in life precipitate no intrigue beyond the de facto crime, then you only have a crime story, and you make no further comment. But you indulge your depraved need to pass judgement when you can make a false correlation - the man's act to his high or low economic or social standing, ethnicity, etc.. Jealousy-driven violence afflicts every segment of every society on the planet... yes, blacks from the hood and whites from prep school, also. Address the problem with absolute specificity or you're not being part of the solution.

Posted by: unempast | May 7, 2010 10:51 PM | Report abuse

death penalty

Posted by: FloridaChick | May 8, 2010 5:05 AM | Report abuse

TRULY INTELLECTUALLY-LAZY & IGNORANT


Lady, if college students you know did NOT date those who drink -- they'd be lonely.

The suspect was a selfish pig. So are a lot of feminists. Please go after them, too.

/////////////////

As I wrote at the time of the Duke arrests, "These don't sound like young men you'd want your daughter to date."

Posted by: russpoter | May 8, 2010 6:23 AM | Report abuse

George's background provides some understanding. His prep school Landon does have a jock culture. His hometown Chevy Chase has many cases of money being used to buy DUIs, hide other infractions, pay off people to look the other way. So these kids learn that covering up is acceptable. Even his neighbor Mr. Preston went on record to say: "George is very polite, gets along well wtih adults." Really? Let's see, he had to be tasered by a female police officer for vulgar sexual remarks and threatening to kill her. Other attacks and other red flags beg the question: Where were George's parents in this. Was George given professional help for his obvious issues (i.e. gender sensitivity training, anger management training, substance abuse counseling.) Were the parents actively involved in that process? If they had been Yeardley Love would probably be alive today.

Posted by: newsjunkie56 | May 8, 2010 3:05 PM | Report abuse

George's background provides some understanding. His prep school Landon does have a jock culture. His hometown Chevy Chase has many cases of money being used to buy DUIs, hide other infractions, pay off people to look the other way. So these kids learn that covering up is acceptable. Even his neighbor Mr. Preston went on record to say: "George is very polite, gets along well wtih adults." Really? Let's see, he had to be tasered by a female police officer for vulgar sexual remarks and threatening to kill her. Other attacks and other red flags beg the question: Where were George's parents in this. Was George given professional help for his obvious issues (i.e. gender sensitivity training, anger management training, substance abuse counseling.) Were the parents actively involved in that process? If they had been Yeardley Love would probably be alive today.

Posted by: newsjunkie56 | May 8, 2010 3:06 PM | Report abuse

The mystery persists: why do girls like Yeardley Love, praised by all as a fine young lady, go out with brutes like Hugeley? Sure, she eventually broke up with him, but why was she attracted to him in the first place?

Posted by: Marshall4 | May 8, 2010 6:31 PM | Report abuse

"Huguely received a 60-day suspended sentence, six months probation, a fine, and was required to perform community service and attend substance abuse education." Somehow, the coach didn't find out about this.

He also beat up a fellow lacrosse player in his sleep for kissing Yeardley, which the coach found out about.

Yet Huguely wasn't even suspended one game.

Time for us to establish some priorities. Sports shouldn't trump academics and civil behavior in public. We need a zero tolerance policy for violent behavior, PARTICULARLY in college and professional sports. We hear about the exemption of athletes from expected social behavior all too often.


Posted by: postfan1 | May 9, 2010 7:09 AM | Report abuse

Dear Ms. Marcus,
I would accept ost of this article - but only most! As for the "ivy league kids" whom you see as being treated differently, you wouldhave to ask where the judges come from who give them so much more freeway. It's true, a colored kid from the Bronx would see much less "undrestanding".
It's a class society - and a slave/master society, that did not really chage in the Civil War (it ws not even the real reason for that struggle - it was the oil of those days: cotton).
Where you, on the other hand, show that you are on the extreme counter-side, is your quote: "As I wrote at the time of the Duke arrests, 'These don't sound like young men you'd want your daughter to date.'"
Here, you go, from your own privileged background, back to the new and ever so fashionable "anti-privilege-activism" of prejudiced radicalism. Just in case you missed that point: The Duke arrests were some of the most shamefull distortions of US justice.
So, the things in your argument I dislike to the point of (litterally) getting sick are an uncritical, unjustified hatred against a certain social class (the same that was at work in the sad Duke lacrosse affair) and your apparent friendship for the law of the ilk of the Duke D.A., Mr. Nifong.

Posted by: jboost45 | May 10, 2010 2:00 AM | Report abuse

@CocoC1
So, you were "forced into inappropriate sexual situations" by SEVERAL guys? I'm just curious how a responsible woman so frequently finds herself in that situation and blames the guy instead of taking responsibility for her own safety and continuing to engage in risky behavior. News flash -- not all but many men, and not just athletes, become extremely rude and outraged when turned down for sex. It's how they roll. Continuing to put yourself in that situation with the same "type" of guy just shows how stupid you are.

And I'm not sure what you mean by "scholarship athlete entitlement". I'm not defending boorish behavior by any means, but these guys aren't just handed their scholarships for doing nothing -- they earn them by their superior academic or athletic achievement.

Posted by: AmyS1 | May 11, 2010 11:21 AM | Report abuse

One might also consider the culture at the Landon School. Several acquaintances have removed their sons from Landon and transferred them to other local prep schools that don't have such a severe jock-misogynist-elitist culture that promotes not only a sense of entitlement but a sense of intellectual and physical superiority over women and non-white young men. Square pegs are emotionally beaten until they either squeeze themselves into round holes or leave the institution. It is an old boys school in the fullest sense. There are many successful men who have come from the Landon school but I wonder what the history is of its star lacrosse players. They seem to live, and be treated under, different rules.

Posted by: ggwp | May 11, 2010 1:27 PM | Report abuse

I'm lost as to what the point of this article was. You started out asking three major questions, all of which you either did not answer or provided information to refute throughout your article. I can say that from working with elite college athletes for some time now that the neither status nor "entitlement" plays a part in such violent tendencies. Such tendencies are learned at home or elsewhere, or, as could be psychologically argued, are natural instincts due to brain chemical imbalances or something of that sort. It might also be noted that while most collegiate lacrosse players both male and female stereotypically come from higher class backgrounds, many other college athletes do not. This, therefore, breaks down the argument that a life of privilege before college contributes to the reckless tendencies of current college athletes. Next time, a more reasonable argument should be posed at the beginning of the piece, or stronger supporting evidence should be used as content.

Posted by: hbi70 | May 11, 2010 9:54 PM | Report abuse

I find it interesting that the lacrosse community is so silent. As a more then casual observer of the sport and the men who play it at the highest level in college I believe that we will soon learn that steroids were more to blame then alcohol for this tragedy.

Posted by: dcfilm2 | May 12, 2010 2:36 PM | Report abuse

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