Throughout his campaign, and in his recent inaugural address, President Barack Obama had asked the United States citizens to make sacrifices, take responsibility, and turn from greed, all for the good of the country. During this economic downturn, with the record numbers of jobs being lost, and the skyrocketing number of home foreclosures, people from all walks of life are suffering. President Obama, to his credit, did not just talk the talk, but he walked the walk by freezing the pay of those on his staff who earned more than $100,000 in yearly salary.
Cities, including Durham, are struggling to provide basic sanitary, social, and law enforcement services to its residents due to its tremendous budget deficit. The cash-strapped city of Durham is even being asked to make cuts by the governor of the state, because the state’s financial health is itself in critical condition.
However these times of severe economic hardship to those in Durham and the state of North Carolina, do not seem to faze the families of the three exonerated Duke Lacrosse defendants, as they plow ahead, full steam, with their lawsuits against the city of Durham, Duke University, and the individuals with any link (no matter how trivial) to the Duke Lacrosse case. To keep from handing over thirty million dollars to three party-going student athletes and their families, the city has already spent more than one million dollars in preparing for its defense. This is taxpayer money that could be going for social programs, education, infrastructure projects, and to pay decent salaries for police, firefighters, and probation officers. And the meter is still running.
If the carpetbagger families of the ex-Duke lacrosse players had an ounce of decency, they would do the Christian thing and immediately drop their law suits. But these wealthy families, from northern states, are driven by two powerful forces: greed and malice. And their greed is surpassed only by their malice. Even if they are not awarded a dime by the courts, they will take pleasure in all of the pain that they inflict on Durham and Duke University by diverting precious taxpayer dollars from needed programs and projects in order to legally defend against the merit-less carpetbagger lawsuits.
Yes, the president challenged all Americans to take responsibility and make sacrifices that will be in the future best interests of us all. Unfortunately, like the families of the Duke Lacrosse defendants, there are some shortsighted, self-centered individuals among us who place who place their own self interests, regardless of how contemptible, above all else.