Going Public- to see that justice is served
A news discussion on CNN yesterday revealed the Army’s reversal of charges of dereliction of duty by superior officers Army accused of covering up mistakes in Afghan battle evidently in the hallowed tradition of “protecting the institution” and blaming the dead……
I noted another article in The Scientist which discusses the same inclination in scientific circles:
Sometimes going public with an accusation is the only way to bring the truth to light……..the local commission investigating the case might delay, play down or even suppress incriminating evidence, perhaps going public was the only way to see that justice was served.
A South Carolina news item Ideology trumps health reports:
Dr. David Cull, a prominent vascular surgeon in Greenville, had invented a small valve system that, if it works, could spare 300,000 dialysis patients across the country enormous suffering and save U.S. taxpayers billions of dollars.
But Cull’s hometown senator, Jim DeMint, would not write a letter supporting the surgeon’s application for a federal grant under the landmark health care bill that President Barack Obama signed into law a year ago today….
DeMint vowed in 2009 to make health care Obama’s “Waterloo” and is leading Republican efforts in Congress to repeal or deny funding to the law.
All our institutions are prone to cover their butts, choose ideology over the public good and discard those who seek justice.
In effect this delays institutional ability to learn from mistakes, and it used to go on for generations. New technology and recognition of the value of “transparency” (in word if not in action) are game changers. Recent comments by Fouad Ajami about WikiLeaks in Foreign Policy magazine included observations that nothing particularly new was revealed, just confirmation of what people already knew but was not officially acknowledged.
The powers-that-be are certain to push back in order to censor or punish those who reveal painful truths. But those with the courage to go public today are challenging traditions of smirking hypocrisy, institutionalized corruption, and blaming the victim. I applaud them!
see also: Despite Reforms, Whistleblowers at Development Banks Face Retaliation
By Charles Davis