“Martin Luther King, Jr. was a plagiarist”

We must also guard against another temptation. When the world recently learned that Martin Luther King, Jr. was a plagiarist, those who had a vested interest in keeping him up on his pedestal immediately began talking about feet of clay, the human condition, and we all struggle, do we not? In other words, Dr. King was a scoundrel, but we will admit no evidence that supports the claim and treat as a scoundrel anyone who dares to present the evidence. When confronted, against our will, with indisputable evidence that our hero was not foremost among the saints, the automatic response is to interpret it as evidence that King had a ‘weakness’ or a ‘failing.’ But never is it called by its Biblical name — sin.
Douglas Wilson

“Randy Booth . . . plagiarized material . . . multiple instances . . . a number of different sources . . . negligence . . . editorial incompetence . . . gross breach of contract . . .”

“Canon Press has investigated the charges of plagiarism and improper citation in A Justice Primer, and it is abundantly clear that the editor and co-author, Randy Booth, plagiarized material in multiple instances from a number of different sources. Such negligence and editorial incompetence is a gross breach of contract and obviously does not meet Canon Press’s publishing standards. As such, we have discontinued the book, effective immediately. Refer to the author statements below for more information. We would like to specifically thank Rachel Miller for bringing this to our attention so we could take the necessary steps to immediately correct such a serious error.”

Friday, November 25, 2016 |

“for anyone familiar with . . . the footnotes in our books”

Allow me to clear my throat and modestly nod at the Omnibus curriculum, which takes students through six massive volumes of hundreds of ancient, medieval and modern books and plays — Scripture, Shakespeare, Chaucer, Homer, Herodotus, Plutarch, Euclid, Plato, Aristotle, Virgil, Thucy . . . oh, never mind. . . . In short, for anyone familiar with the topics at ACCS conferences, the footnotes in our books, and the curricula in our schools, Michael appears to be a perpilocutionist.
Douglas Wilson

“George Orwell, call your office.”

If you want to read an indictment of American academia, as if you needed one, then I recommend Plagiarism and the Culture War. In it, Theodore Pappas documents the wholesale plagiarism committed by Martin Luther King, Jr. in his doctoral work, not to mention the varied and wondrous contortions of the academic establishment as they sought to studiously ignore this indisputable fact. Of course, this particular instance is not the sum and substance of modern academic corruption, but it does provide a wonderful example of how it all works. If you are in any doubt about how advanced our public corruption is, just write a letter to your local paper on how MLK was a plagiarist, and see what happens. Suddenly, mirabile dictu, people like you who believe that a man should be judged by the content of his character and not by the color of his skin will be branded . . . racists. George Orwell, call your office.
Douglas Wilson

“Theft and fraud are driven by zero-sum thinking”

But sin is like that. Sin is blinkered and it naturally and easily assumes, in the grip of envy and covetousness, that more for him is less for me, and since I am in this for me, we have to work on more for me and less for him, and devil take the hindmost. Theft and fraud are driven by zero-sum thinking, which is one of the underlying theological reasons for opposing and rejecting them.
Douglas Wilson

“see you later, alligator”

You don’t have to cite anyone when you write ‘on the one hand’ or ‘on the other.’ And as my son once observed (please note the citation), no one knows who was the first person to say ‘see you later, alligator.’ But perhaps I should take that back. Maybe somebody does know. Maybe I am just the one who does not know. It sounds like it might have come from one of those Tin Pan Alley songs in the twenties.
Douglas Wilson

“everybody knows that this is simple intellectual theft”

Facile comparisons between college term papers and published books need to quit being quite so facile. They may continue as legitimate comparisons, just not in facile-mode. When a college student finds some sparkling prose online, and plonks it down in the middle of his otherwise tepid paper, making the stolen portion flash like a strobe light at the instructor, everybody knows that this is simple intellectual theft, clumsily done. That kind of straight across plagiarism can happen with books also, and does, with depressing regularity.
Douglas Wilson

“an essential part of a good editor’s responsibility is to anticipate the possibility of this kind of error, and check on it”

But at the same time, I was the one who edited them, putting them together in one sustained piece. The booklet was not a “two article” affair, with his name on his and mine on mine. There was one sustained argument from front to back. Both our names were on the cover. And I was the one who had the editorial responsibility for blending them. And even if this had been a “two article” booklet, I still would have been the editor, and an essential part of a good editor’s responsibility is to anticipate the possibility of this kind of error, and check on it. Accidents do happen, and an editor’s responsibility includes an active awareness of the fact that accidents happen, and to therefore check. I didn’t check, and I should have. Mea maxima culpa. I had not read Time on the Cross at that time, and given the nature of the errors, had I read that book we would have been spared a lot of grief.
Douglas Wilson