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Duke University: It Takes More Than NCAA Basketball Championships To Be Champions

Does ridiculing the opposing team show school spirit? I doubt it.

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When I moved to the Triangle area years ago, I was eager to partake of the best that both the University of North Carolina (UNC) and Duke University had to offer. I lived near route 15-501 on the Durham-Chapel Hill border and was equidistant to both campuses, although my mailing address was in Chapel Hill.

Both schools had wonderful campuses, and I enjoyed visiting Duke’s magnificent Bell Tower, its Sarah Duke Gardens, hospital complex, East Campus, and nearby Ninth Street. I equally enjoyed visiting UNC’s Dean Smith Center, Bell Tower, Kenan Stadium, student union, and many libraries.

Eager  to Attend

Duke University had just won the NCAA Basketball Championship when I moved here. I had been a long-time college basketball fan, and I was eager to visit Cameron Indoor Stadium.

As I began to attend games, I noticed distinct differences in the way crowds at the two universities treated the visiting sports teams. Fans at the University of North Carolina, with it’s spacious Dean Smith Center, showed respect for opposing players. When the teams were announced, UNC fans either applauded or were respectfully silent. During the games, there were few times when I heard abusive language from anyone in the stands. The exception was when someone on an opposing team acted overly aggressive towards a UNC player or committed some similar faux pas.

When Dean Smith was coaching at UNC, if he even mildly detected abusive fan behavior toward opposing players, he would stare at the student section and, in a matter of moments, the abuse would stop.

By contrast, I had a hard time in my own mind justifying the behavior of the people who attended Duke games at Cameron Indoor Stadium. Cameron Crazies, as they are called, do not act with respect for anyone other than those in a Blue Devil uniform, and I question whether they even respect their own team.

Over the years, these students have thrown tubes of Clearasil on the floor taunting players from other teams who had acne conditions. They have made specific, purposely hurtful references to players’ relatives, grades, and even campus incidents such as a shooting at NC State University.

Condoned at the Top

I began to see in the broader sense that “Cameron Crazies” have endured because at some higher level, be the basketball coaches, the university administration, provost, university president, or board of trustees, indirectly condoned their behavior.

At the start of Atlantic Coast Conference games, when the announcement comes asking fans to respect the players, coaches, and game officials, Duke fans aren’t listening. Neither Dick Vitale nor other announcers have the gumption to speak out on this matter and instead they offer platitudes about about fan “spirit” at Cameron.

Does ridiculing the other team show spirit? I doubt it.

For a while, I attended a couple of Duke games each season, usually during the holidays when most students were gone and the tickets were easier to come by. Enough students were on hand to continue the antics. Trying my best to be objective, I began observing them with something akin to curious detachment. I reasoned that, of course, every home team crowd loves to win and loves to celebrate the victory as their team pulls ahead.

With Duke, however, there’s a taunting, a “hazing” ritual, that goes beyond anything I’ve seen elsewhere, and I’ve had the opportunity to watch more than twenty-five college basketball teams in ten to twelve different states.

Viewing Others With Contempt

As we head into the final week of regular season play, before the 2023 conference tournaments, I know this: Duke “crazies” view opposing team players, especially those from North Carolina and NC State, with outright contempt. The antics of the Cameron Crazies, as opposed to being clever, are obnoxious. They smack of the elitism that is part and parcel of the Duke campus mentality.

Duke prides itself on being a high-class institution and, in many quarters, it relishes the moniker the “Harvard of the South.” Yet, visit Harvard, view its institutions and sports and the way their students and fans interact with others, and you’ll see they bear no similarity to Duke.

The now retired Coach K often lamented that Duke was not a favorite among fans (outside of Duke University). Could it be that word of Duke’s utter disdain for all that is non-Duke is spreading? I was excited when I moved to the Triangle area, equidistant between Duke and UNC. I wanted to embrace both universities and partake of all they had to offer. Now, after all these years in the area, I want nothing to do with Duke University.

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Jeff Davidson is the world's only holder of the title "The Work-Life Balance Expert®" as awarded by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. He is the premier thought leader on work-life balance, integration, and harmony. Jeff speaks to organizations that seek to enhance their overall productivity by improving the effectiveness of their people. He is the author of Breathing Space, Simpler Living, Dial it Down, and Everyday Project Management. Visit www.BreathingSpace.com for more information on Jeff's keynote speeches and seminars, including: Managing the Pace with Grace® * Achieving Work-Life Balance™ * Managing Information and Communication Overload®



 
 
 

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Life

Taking a Wrong Turn and Staying Safe

It is no time for equivocation when the issue is your safety and your life

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You take a wrong turn in the city, perhaps missing the desired exit ramp and you end up on a street with which you are totally unfamiliar. Old, abandoned warehouses and litter abound. People hanging around on corners don’t seem to have much to do.

Positioned for Caution

You consult your GPS as to how to get out of this neighborhood. All indications are that at best it will take a couple minutes, with some complex turns and twists. So, what do you do while you’re in your car?

Keep a safe distance from the car in front of you at stop lights or stop signs. You need to have sufficient room to hit the gas pedal in case you have to vamoose in a hurry. Especially while you’re stopped at a red light, stay ever alert. Continually check your rear-view mirror and your side mirrors to ensure that no one is approaching you.

Carjacking is not uncommon and, even with your windows closed, a crowbar can smash them in seconds. In any case, if someone does approach you, be prepared to speed away.

May I be of Service?

If you happen to be on the street, out of your car, at a gas station or retail store, be especially weary. If someone approaches you and, in a reasonably pleasant voice, says something such as, “How are you today?” be prepared to take off in a hurry.

Suppose it’s too late, and the ‘cordial’ greeter is merely a few yards away. In a loud voice yell out, “I have nothing to do with you,” or any other phrase that you think will draw the attention of others and perhaps startle the nearby greeter. If you’re a woman, it is okay to scream and shout.

If you need to stop at a gas station or some retail establishment and people are hanging around, it’s best to keep moving. Drive to another location where no one is lingering. In this day and age, nearly everyone is busy. When you see people with nothing to do, the odds are that they want something from you – it could be money or could be worse.

Generally speaking, people with responsibilities do not gather together in groups outside of retail establishments, alongside walks, or the streets. So, you want to avoid such situations all together.

Action Jackson

The upshot is you need to get back on the route you had originally sought. You don’t want to linger in an unfamiliar, strange, or suspicious neighborhood. You will stand out like a sore thumb. The regulars know when someone is lost or disconcerted and the malingerers among them will move into action.

Sorry if this sounds like it’s rather a stringent approach to urban affairs, but this is your safety and your life. It is no time for equivocation.

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Politics

Decades of Democrat’s Dirty Deeds and Disservice to America

Whether racist, treasonous, or law-breaking, Democrats have been at the forefront throughout our history

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May 30, 2024 is a day that will live in infamy as lawfare will now potentially plague every major election forevermore. In the continuing travesty of American justice in New York, it’s just as well that Donald Trump was found guilty on all 34 counts. It solidifies, for those citizens in the know, just how corrupt the Biden Administration, the George Soros appointed district attorney, and the judge are, and how totally biased the 12 ‘impartial’ jurors happen to be.

Many people don’t understand, however, that the Democrat party has a long history of dishonor and disservice to America, while be adept at covering its tracks.

Assassins in Arms

With the control of the big three television networks, the handful of major newspapers in the U.S., National Public Radio, the internet and other tech giants, and all the other ways in which the Left can manipulate public opinion and create narratives out of whole cloth, who among us has a true and accurate understanding of the Democratic Party?

For instance, who murdered Abraham Lincoln? Almost anyone can tell you it was John Wilks Booth, but what is little known is that he was a member of the Know-Nothing group, affiliated with Democrats. Who murdered John F. Kennedy? Lee Harvey Oswald, and whether or not he was a patsy for the CIA, he was a Socialist and in league with Marxists.

Who murdered Martin Luther King? James Earl Ray. Whether acting alone or a patsy for the FBI, Ray was a southern segregationist. Hence, all three of these assassins leaned Left, or at the least, had affiliations with Leftist groups.

Stomping on the Rights of Others

Who owned slaves throughout the southern U.S.? It was Democrats. Generally speaking, Republicans or those who leaned Right did not own slaves. Who lynched blacks and white abolitionists? It was the Democrats. Some 4,200 people in the U.S. were lynched between the years 1882 and 1968, 3/4 of them black and 1/4 of them white, those who supported the Black Freedom Movement.

Who created the Confederacy? Democrats. Who launched the KKK? Although one cannot say that the Democratic Party initiated the launch, many members of the KKK were Democrats, some high-ranking, and, had strong affiliations with the Democratic Party. Republicans did not join the KKK, had no affiliations, and loathed the institution.

With Jim Crow and all of the indignities that went with it, including separate bathrooms, white versus colored drinking fountains, and such, it was Democrats. Who delayed women’s suffrage – women’s right to vote – for more than 100 years? Democrats. Look up the history of women voting in America, and you will see that Democrats stifled the process at every turn.

Who interned Japanese-American citizens? It was Franklin Delano Roosevelt and his administration, Democrats. Who upheld segregation from the 1930s straight through the 1960s? Democrats, not Republicans. Governor George Wallace was a Democrat. Senator Strom Thurman initially was a Democrat. Former Klan member Senator Robert Byrd was a Democrat.

Racist to the Core

Who enforced integration at Central High School in Little Rock, Arkansas? The U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Brown v. Topeka Board of Education, on May 17, 1954, that segregated schools are “inherently unequal.” Later, in September, 1957, with the backing and protection summoned by Republican President Dwight Eisenhower, nine African-American students enrolled at Central High School in Little Rock, Arkansas.

Who said, “These Negroes, they’re getting pretty uppity these days and that’s a problem for us since they’ve got something now they never had before, the political pull to back up their uppityness. Now we’ve got to do something about this, we’ve got to give them a little something, just enough to quiet them down, not enough to make a difference.”

“For if we don’t move at all, then their allies will line up against us and there’ll be no way of stopping them, we’ll lose the filibuster and there’ll be no way of putting a brake on all sorts of wild legislation. It’ll be Reconstruction all over again.” It was Democrat President Lyndon Johnson.

In reference to Barack Obama, who said, “A few years ago this guy would have been getting coffee for us?” It was a Democrat, former President Bill Clinton.

Who Gets Blamed?

Paradoxically, which party in the U.S. is deemed racist? Generally speaking, it is Republicans. Why? The Democrats control the narrative. The mainstream media is virtually in bed with them, carries their water, and espouses whatever prevailing narrative top Democrats choose to have widely disseminated. It has been this way for decades. In the words of Malcolm X, “The Democratic Party is more racist than the Republican Party.”

Whether racist, treasonous, or law-breaking, Democrats have been at the forefront throughout our history.

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