Thursday, December 19, 2002

Some integrity in the recent SCSU court case

Since I am no longer a faculty member at SCSU, I have few facts regarding the recent court settlement. Therefore, I have no basis for evaluating the appropriateness of the settlement. However, I learned something today which I think people need to know. Regardless of whether I may agree or disagree with Professor Geoffrey Tabakin, he and I routinely cross paths in a local coffee house. We often exchange a few words. Today I asked him if the 20 grand he received was tax-free. I asked this question for a specific reason----I had a hunch. GT was very forthcomming and confirmed what I suspected.

I'm sharing this information (with his permission) as SCSU faculty and staff should know, regardless of your agreement with his views and the case, that his involvement in the case was driven by principle. GT insisted that his settlement award NOT be for emotional distress, a condition that would have made his award tax free. By doing so he must pay taxes on the award. He made this decision because he wanted his involvement in the litigation to be motivated by principle and not finances. It is refreshing that his push for social justice (via this court case) was based on sincere social justice principles and not the social justice terrorism tactics employed by others at SCSU.

If possible, it would be nice if somehow this SCSU Scholars blog post could be mentioned on the SCSU-wide lists. Regardless of one's position regarding the court case and the issues, people should respect GT for his integrity and principles.

Kevin McGrew