It was rewarding to see our old buddy from Channel 6, Opie Notsohumble, making news instead of just reporting it.
A prince of the expense account, North Kingstown school superintendent James Halley, had accused aggressive Opie of assaulting him before a school committee meeting. This was while Notsohumble was researching one of his often hard-hitting “You Paid for It!” segments, about NK’s misspending of federal education funds. This “assault” supposedly consisted of Hummel striking Halley in the chest and stopping him from entering the NK High School auditorium by blocking the door with his journalistic foot. Wow. Bow-wow.
Much to Halley’s chagrin, the town solicitor and local constabulary decided there was insufficient merit to pursue the case. The superintendent insists he will seek a state police investigation. Yet unless the staties have a lot of spare time on their hands, P&J suspect they will be about as interested in this as the townies — especially since there is videotape of the incident.
Opie did indeed have the wind in his sails that night, as he pursued Halley toward the auditorium, saying, “Dr. Halley, are we going to do this the easy way or the hard way?” The instant reply should have been, “That’s what she said,” but Halley wasn’t up to it. Nor did he laugh when Notso¬humble proclaimed himself “the State of Rhode Island,” forgetting to add, “and Providence Planta¬tions” — in support, no doubt, of those who want to do away with that phrase. The omission was too bad, because the potential for big-time yucks was rampant.
Could it have been coincidence that on the day when the assault charge was reported, the Urinal’s “Deadbeat” section contained a tidbit noting how Opie had just won a regional Edward R. Murrow Award for Investigative Reporting, for his two-part “You Paid for It!” Series, called “Steak and Lobster”? The focus of the two pieces? Wait for it . . . questionable use of taxpayer dollars by Superintendent Halley.
Ah, Vo Dilun. You can’t make this stuff up.
Peace at hand
On April 18, the good folks at the Institute for International Sport will bring Nobel Peace Prize laureate Elie Wiesel to Providence. Wiesel is the author of 36 works dealing with Judaism, the Holocaust, and the moral responsibility of all people to fight hatred, racism, and genocide.
Wiesel will deliver a keynote address, “The Role of Youth in World Peace.” The Institute’s upcoming calendar includes the 2008 United States Scholar-Athlete Games and the 2010 World Scholar-Athlete Games, as well as a special event in 2011, the World Youth Peace Summit, to be held in conjunction with the Institute’s 25th anniversary.
Wiesel gives high praise to the Institute and Dan Doyle, its founder and director, saying, “I am for any initiative for peace — even more so if its sights are set on young people. Dan Doyle and the Institute for International Sport, with its Scholar-Athlete Games and forthcoming summit, are creatively working to turn the hope for peace into reality.”
The various Scholar-Athlete Games, centered at the University of Rhode Island, where the Institute is located, and other programs, have drawn national attention, and thousands of kids from Little Rhody have been part of the events. Phillipe is proud to have been associated with the Institute.
Wiesel’s April 18 keynote address (7 pm) will be at the Rhode Island Convention Center. Tickets are $20 for adults and $10 for students. They can be purchased at www.international sport.com, by clicking on the ArtTix logo, or by calling ArtTix at 401.621.6123. For info about a private reception-dinner with Weisel prior to the event, contact the Institute at firstname.lastname@example.org. As always, be there or be square.