I’m particularly touched that so many are interested enough to post comments to say the subject has no interest for them (and it shouldn’t for me either, if I know what’s good for me!).
“Compromised” describes Reed’s involvement in Iran-Contra and takes a plague-on-both-your-houses approach as to who should bear responsibility for that scandal, as the title implies.
Some of those who have replied to my prior posts have asked why I didn’t check out all the speakers at the event before deciding to go down there. One, this was pre-Internet (at least for me) and two, I had no way of determining what these people were going to say ahead of time.
As far as guilt by association goes, those who say I deserved what I got should see the movie “Six Degrees of Separation,” because that’s what is involved here in order to make that allegation. The logic—if you want to call it that—goes as follows:
Sutherland (A); knows Reed (B); who organizes Festival (C); which invites speakers like “Bo” Gritz (D); who has ties to other organizations, e.g. the Populist Party (E); whose members (F); have racist views (G). Ergo, Sutherland has racist views. That’s kind of a stretch, don’t you think?
I also didn’t mean to imply that the Star’s anger with me was only because of hurt feelings at being criticized. Reed had filed a multi-million dollar defamation case against the Star and the paper’s management was worried that they wouldn’t be able to use my firm Lathrop & Gage to defend them because Reed was also our client and thus there was a conflict of interest. (Reed’s lawyer’s argued this in a Motion to Disqualify.)
Lathrop & Gage has the best defamation lawyer in the area (Bernie Rhodes) and they (the Star) didn’t want to lose his services. I can’t tell you who specifically at the Star allegedly tried to get me fired but I can tell you that I got hauled in before the law firm’s senior partners and raked over the coals, both over my letter to the Star and my representation of Reed. (Star reporter Judy Thomas was also sued so she didn’t have any love lost for me. I didn’t say she destroyed my political career, only that she wished she had, e.g. she sent an anonymous letter to me on her home fax!)
I had better, or at least more enjoyable, things to do with my time than to drive to Carthage on a blistering hot day in hopes of getting paid for my law firm’s work. If I’d known this was the Klan Fest it’s purported to have been, I sure as heck wouldn’t have chatted up a reporter from the Star. To add insult to injury, I incurred the wrath of my employer for daring to challenge an unfair attack on me in a letter that was never published. (Obviously, the Star’s management had complained to the law firm about it because otherwise no one at the law firm would have known about the letter.)
I’m still scratching my head over what I did to deserve all the grief except being in the wrong place at the wrong time.