Comments Posted By Jaybird
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The problem isn't the plagiarism, per se. Well, it is. But let's pretend it's not the most pressing problem.

The problem is that instead of coming out and saying "you know what, I plagiarized a lot in my youth. I took shortcuts because I thought I wouldn't get caught... but I did. This is my fault. Not "the left's", not Michelle Malkin's, not anyone's but mine. Mom, Dad, I'm sorry I brought this on you. I wish I had done a better job of living the way you raised me to. To all of my good friends, please don't stop defending conservatism, my parents, or my friends but know that you should no longer be defending me." he said, and let me give as close to an exact quote as I can:

In one instance, I have been accused me of passing off P.J. O'Rourke's writing as my own in a column for the paper. But the truth is that I had met P.J. at a Republican event and asked his permission to do a college-specific version of his classic piece on partying. He granted permission, the piece was cleared with my editors at the paper, and it ran as inspired by O’Rourke’s original.

My critics have also accused me of plagiarism in multiple movie reviews for the college paper. I once caught an editor at the paper inserting a line from The New Yorker (which I read) into my copy and protested. When that editor was promoted, I resigned. Before that, insertions had been routinely made in my copy, which I did not question. I did not even at that time read the publications from which I am now alleged to have lifted material. When these insertions were made, I assumed, like most disgruntled writers would, that they were unnecessary but legitimate editorial additions.

But all these specifics are beside the point. Considering that all of this happened almost eight years ago, and that there are no files or notes that I've kept from that brief stint, it is simply my word against the liberal blogosphere on these examples. It becomes a matter of who you believe.

End quotation.

*THAT* is where the problem is for me. Not that he plagiarized. Kids are stupid and do stupid things. Teenagers are monumentally stupid and a teenager saying "you know what, I think I'm going to rip off a Goldberg G-File for my column at the student newspaper" is, probably, a lot less of a threat to society at large than a teenager who says "I've always wondered about sharing needles with homeless people after I sell sex for money to support my heroin habit."

He ought to have come out and said "My friends, please... stop defending me." He didn't until more and more and more and more evidence of plagiarism was found. That's the big sin.

Comment Posted By Jaybird On 26.03.2006 @ 12:30

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