Monday, February 28, 2005

The MacGuffin

Through the 1800's, Kingston, Ontario girded for an attack from the United States that never came. The fortress and gun towers that protected the harbor were never used, but today there's a different sort of barrage directed at the city, one aimed at former UAlbany President Karen Hitchcock.

The State Ethics Commission's inquiry into Dr. Hitchcock's alleged dealings in Albany have made headlines on both sides of the border. This is obviously an awkward situation for her employer, Queens University ---but also for WAMC. Hitchcock co-hosts the station's Best of Our Knowledge show, a program about education heard on about a hundred radio stations across America. Alan Chartock says that for now, Hitchcock remains host. "Quite often these charges turn out to be baseless and unfair," said Chartock. "In some cases they even lead to civil actions that lead to libel and slander suits. She is the head of one of the leading educational institutions in the world ---if something further develops we always have the option of taking appropriate action at that time."