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Board's Behavior In Lawrence Case Infuriates Editor

September 29, 2012 by admin

A Column By Joe Malanaphy

     As I sat awake going over the details of the Frank Lawrence termination story and looking at financial documents that detailed how the students money is being spent on lawyers, marketing firms, etc., I couldn't believe my eyes and the only thing that came to mind was "WTF?!"

     To date, an outrageous amount of money has been spent on this unnecessary circus, and that number is only climbing. Between lawyers, court fees, etc., this is only going to get worse as Lawrence is appealing the board's decision and planning on taking this show to Superior Court, which is enraging.

     I also attended the Board of Trustees meeting on Sept. 12, which had a spillover of supporters from the rally that was taking place for Lawrence outside in the parking lot. The way I see it, the board was very fair to anyone speaking on behalf of Lawrence. Anyone who had a valid argument or facts proving mistakes made by the board were gaveled down one by one by Chairman Josh Elkes.

     Some poured their hearts out, not only for the rights of a friend, colleague, or mentor, but for justice and what is right. Meanwhile, some of you on the board (not all) clearly prefer to be close-minded dictators rather than distinguished community representatives, sitting there claiming to be upholding justice under the American flag. By the way, if that last comment offended anyone, then clearly you are the some. If not, then good, I wasn't talking to you.

     A young woman and once proud graduate of Brookdale stood there bravely in front of a strange crowd and an unwavering board. She poured her heart out on behalf of a man who changed the course of her life for the better, only to be rudely silenced under the guise of time constraints. Granted, each speaker had to abide by specific time constraints, but it seemed more likely an attempt to silence this poor woman so that those in attendance weren't swayed by the truth.

     The truth is that certain individuals weren't doing their jobs when former president Burnham was spending away. The board is embarrassed; they should be. But that shouldn't mean that after allowing Burnham's admitted theft by deception to occur, they take a hard line on Lawrence and throw him under the bus.

     The school claims Lawrence violated a code of ethics in regard to cash management procedures that didn't exist, formally at least, at the time he was said to have violated them.

     Now, considering a portion of the board are either former or practicing lawyers or police officers, I'm certain they are familiar with the justice system. I hope they realize this headache is going to come back, but the question is, which one of you will crack first when the law's heavy hand starts pressing down?

     I'm hoping for someone to step up and do what's right before it costs the students more money that could be applied toward education rather than lawyers.

     If there's one thing I've learned in life, it's that men are vengeful savages. Honest men (and women) despise injustice, paying taxes, and crooked public employees. They will seek revenge to the fullest extent when taken advantage of and will call for justice in the form of angry mobs with torches in hand if pushed far enough. They will make sure those responsible pay dearly and without mercy, left to sit in their shame as long as they live. (See "Burnham Pleads Guilty.")

     Dishonest, spineless men (and women) will do anything to save their hides, even if it means diming out their co-conspirator when Johnny Law comes knocking. So take a good look around at those you share your evil deeds with in life, because when pressed, they will fall like a house of cards in a hurricane.

     Either way--honest or dishonest, all men are savages at heart, but those in charge of keeping law and order, well...they are to be feared above the rest because they show the least mercy of all.

     The law does not like to be played with or mocked--they are taxpayers too. In closing, I leave you with an exerpt from the Book of Samuel: "Let us fall into the hands of the Lord, for his mercy is great, but please don't let me fall into the hands of men." 

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