[eDebate] Fwd: Please forward to edebate - from Elliot Tarloff

Brent Culpepper brentonculpepper
Thu Apr 3 16:21:29 CDT 2008


Elliot asked me to forward this to edebate.

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Brent Culpepper <brent.culpepper at gmail.com>
Date: Thu, Apr 3, 2008 at 4:20 PM
Subject: Fwd: Please forward to edebate
To: Brent Culpepper <brentonculpepper at gmail.com>




---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Elliot Sheppard Tarloff <tarloff at gmail.com>
Date: Thu, Apr 3, 2008 at 4:19 PM
Subject: Please forward to edebate
To: Brent Culpepper <brent.culpepper at gmail.com>


All,

I was the author of the post about Kacey that she'd like taken down off of
edebate.  I thought about avoiding this controversy for a number of
reasons:  1) I don't think that anything I post would add to the
discussion.  I made an entirely inappropriate and insensitive (and not
funny) joke about Kacey (and a number of similarly bad jokes about Klinger)
and have apologized to both profusely.  I don't think this public gesture
does anything more to let them know how much I regret the bio; 2) I've
privately asked Kerpen to take the post down on at least two occasions.  He
hasn't responded to any of my requests.  I'm not blaming Kerpen.  If he
doesn't have authority, then I'd just like to know who does and how we can
reach him or her.  But I do think that Kacey has a point that if the author
(me), the subject (Klinger), and the indirectly affected party (Kacey), want
a post taken down, it should be taken down; 3) I don't know that these
edebate controversies ever result in the desired conclusion.  I doubt this
post will be instrumental in the purging of the DCA bio I wrote.

So why am I submitting this now?  I guess because I don't want members of a
community that meant so much to me to think that I'm a schmuck.  Or sexist.
I'm ready to admit doing something stupid, and I've tried to remedy the
mistake of the DCA bio I wrote for Klinger.  Nothing has come of it.  I
don't want a dropped argument (my lack of a posted response) to be taken for
a true argument.

For the record, I want to say that virtually everything I said in my bio of
Klinger ? about him, Kacey, or anyone else for that matter ? is completely
fabricated.  He was my debate partner and closest friend in college, and I'd
feel even more remiss if a dumb roast of him ever adversely affected his
employment or his life in general.  I also have nothing but respect and
admiration for Kacey, who was a fierce competitor, a hard worker, and a
brilliant debater.  She and I are still friends now, and I consider myself
lucky that she was willing to overlook my own insensitivity in this matter.

Two final points that I want to make, not in my own defense, but because
they're somewhat relevant to the discussion:

First, when I wrote the bio of Klinger, I was unaware that edebate posts
were google-able.  That doesn't excuse an inappropriate joke, but it does
provide some context.  In an insulated community, I didn't think saying a
series of outlandish things about two friends of mine would be taken
seriously or could have serious consequences.  I still shouldn't have
written anything to slander Kacey, but I was unaware of the full
implications.

Second, I don't know if any of you remember Klinger's bio of me, but it made
some pretty ridiculous allegations about my (according to Klinger "alleged")
family and me, which have come up over the course of the last few years in
some awkward situations.  First, during security clearances while I've been
traveling with my boss, I've been asked about drugs and debate.  It's never
cost me a job, but it has required more "investigation."  Second, my dad has
received a few phone calls, including from members of the media, asking if
my mom really had an affair with Clinton.  Awkward and untrue to say the
least.  I'm not saying this to ask for the post to be taken down, because on
the whole I thought Klinger was a lot funnier than I was (as he was in
debates).  I just wanted to let everyone know that I understand the
consequences of edebate posts.  If I did want Klinger's bio of me taken
down, I'd hope that I had a channel to let my concern be known.

Cheers,

Elliot
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