In need of moral clarity Mary Katharine Ham May 24, 2006

“I was aiming to follow in the footsteps of one of my role-models, Muhammad Atta.”

–Mohammad Taheri-azar

Do you remember Taheri-azar? The 25-year-old Iranian graduate of the University of North Carolina rented an SUV in March and drove it into The Pit, a campus gathering place for UNC students. He accelerated into the standard college crowd of preachers, smokers, gawkers, and cause-hawkers. He hit nine people and injured six. None died, much to Taheri-azar’s chagrin.

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A couple weeks later, just eight miles down the road in the city of Durham, three Duke lacrosse players were accused of brutally assaulting and raping an exotic dancer at a party on March 13.

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Now, let’s compare the treatment of the accused in each case by local officials, the press, and the local community. I think the results are reflective of a bit of a priority problem in the moral clarity department.

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