Duke University's irresponsible opposition to light rail project


Just to give you an idea of who will suffer most from this:

Leaders at N.C. Central University, Durham Technical Community College and the Durham Housing Authority say the Durham-Orange Light Rail Transit project will bring prosperity to the Fayetteville Street corridor. The 18-mile, $3.3 billion light-rail project includes two stops — Dillard Street and Alston Avenue — between downtown Durham and NCCU, where the rail line ends.

Fayette Place, the site of an abandoned public housing community meant to house many of those residents, sits between those stops. NCCU, Durham Tech and the Durham Housing Authority held a press conference there on Monday afternoon with light-rail supporters.

I need not mention the symbolism of Duke University wielding such power to suppress the needs of those on the lower end of the economic scale, but since other media sources seem hesitant to make that reference, there it is. And while I'm at it, here's another little tid-bit nobody else thought to mention: The Duke University VP who (literally) hit an African-American parking attendant with his car, and then sped off after calling her a "stupid nigger" from the window of his Porsche, was put in charge of managing the University's response to light rail:

Price followed Tuesday’s meeting with another letter to Jacobs and Schewel, in which he again outlined Duke’s concerns but reiterated its vital interest “in the success of Durham and the region” and in “solving the urgent matter of transit for the entire community.”

He is appointing Duke Executive Vice President Tallman Trask III as the principal liaison for the project, with “sole authority to provide information and make decisions on all operational issues,” Price said.

“I hope that these outstanding issues can be definitively resolved in a straightforward and mutually agreeable way,” he said. “At that point, I will be in a position to recommend that the Board of Trustees act favorably on your request for a voluntary contribution of land and rights of way at the appropriate time.”

I'm sure there are some Duke fans and alumni reading this, and I sincerely hope I haven't offended you too much. Besides, when your tuition is literally ten times higher than that sad little HBCU over there, you should be able to control everything around you. Yes, I was being facetious...



Being the fair and objective

person that I am, I'll give Tallman Trask a few lines to 'splain himself:

I want to say a word to the Duke community about my interaction with Shelvia Underwood in August 2014, which has been a subject of much recent discussion. While the details of what happened are a matter of disagreement and subject of civil litigation, I recognize that my conduct fell short of the civility and respectful conduct each member of this community owes to every other. I express my apology to Ms. Underwood and to this community and re-commit myself to ensuring that these values are upheld for all.

Dude, in the real world that most of us live in, assault with a motor vehicle is so far away from "civility and respectful conduct" you'd have to use the Hubble Fucking Telescope to even see it.