Georgia Straight responds to John Furlong's news conference

TheGeorgia Straight has heard John Furlong’s statement this afternoon regarding an article in today’s newspaper. The story was backed up with eight sworn affidavits. Marvin Storrow, Furlong's lawyer, did not make his client available to respond to questions from the journalist, Laura Robinson. She also attempted without success to reach Mr. Furlong through his publisher, Douglas & McIntyre. Ms. Robinson was told that Mr. Furlong had “nothing more” to say to her.

Comments (74) Add New Comment
judi sommer
It is very interesting that the CBC talked to a number of folk who support the Straight's allegations and article.
'
7
8
Rating: -1
Dan Clay
I saw the report on CBC Politics,and listened to J Furlong and then his lawyer- respond...
while reading the hard copy story, in todays G. Straight. I agree with the Straight's response above.
8
12
Rating: -4
Fairness
Whether it is true or not, who cares? Why does someone , like this reporter, want to tarnish someone's reputation and make allegations that may or may not be true. Laura Robinson , why NOW? is what I'm asking...and what does this do for you or anyone else? Why don't you find something GOOD to write about and leave whomever thinks they were wronged to go to the authorities themselves and do what they need to do.
I hope that you get it for Slander, only because I have been in a similar situation where things are written about someone and not any of it is true, and it is ALL taken out of context and embellished to make NEWS!
12
14
Rating: -2
Chisler
Hey Fairness, shoot the messenger and hide the bad stuff away so we can all be BS'd into submission. Good for Laura Robinson, you did great!
13
11
Rating: +2
MRN604
Really -- that's the best you can do in response -- the matters is in the courts now and I would hope the Straight will run full apologies in print IN ADDITION to any punitive damages they amy face. Seems like a very weak response
10
5
Rating: +5
Terminalcitygirl
I don't get all the folks ringing their hands about the "timing" of this story breaking. 15 years ago or 10 years ago or now, it doesn't matter. Clearly Furlong lied through omission about a piece of his life that didn't jive with the image he is selling. Victims of child abuse rarely speak up as children, often not as adults either, especially if they've been treated as horribly as First Nations have been treated for generations in Canada. For this story to come together the right people had to make the right decisions, a critical mass had to speak a horrible truth and someone had to listen, research and then publish the story. Good on you Laura Robinson and Georgia Straight.
9
5
Rating: +4
Donna Morgan
Fairness, that is a ridiculous comment. If this is true, I, for one, care. All involved in the abuse that went on at these schools need to take responsbility, and not pretend that these chapters of their lives didn't even exist.
I think one might answer Why Now because the author wanted to have a lot of supported evidence before printing this. And I'm pretty sure the GS has lawyers who checked this article out before it was printed.
10
15
Rating: -5
Barb Banford
Who cares??????!!! The victims!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 8 of them have sworn statments about what happened to them - their courage is astounding, and I applaude this reporter.

I am reminded of a saying :' the best defense is a strong offense'. We saw that aired on CBC today in one man's statement. A powerful man.

I will be praying for ALL of the victims to come forward - I say go for it Georgia Straight! They deserve to be heard.
10
18
Rating: -8
jacko
Gee, what do you think would happen to the regular folk if on their resume they stated they came to Canada in 1974 when they were actually here in 1969? What do you think their employer would say about about a little discrepancy like that? I'm thinking the answer would be 'don't let the door hit your a** on the way out'.
5
24
Rating: -19
Call Me Skeptical.
Sworn affadavits aren't enough. Ommissions in life story aren't enough.

This story is either: Not true. Somewhat true. Completely true.

See everyone in court (unless it doesn't get that far).

It will be interesting to hear ALL parties give their version, timelines, etc.

Why do I have a feeling that everyone involved has an angle?
7
21
Rating: -14
Aboriginal
Friends of mine have always said I have the gift of discernment. And, as a Survivor of 13 years of residential school, I always felt there was "something" about Furlong that this person cannot be trusted. Seems too, the first thing to the truth is denial. Sooner or later, the victims of abuse always win. For Furlong, he better hope that more victims will not come forward for alleged abuses. With numbers, the RCMP will have no choice but to charge him
10
9
Rating: +1
Sparkles J.
After reading these comments the majority seem to support the reporter and the victims. Being an abused child these things are buried and resurface years decades later. It very diffilcult to come forward and even admit abuse as a victim it takes a lot of courage. I hope politics and Furlong legal funds do not get in the way of Justice and the truth. I also never trusted that man either. His lies during Vanoc and CBC investigation on the death of the luge athlete also was a cover up. I too hope more victims have the courage and legal help to defend themselves. I admire you all for your strength and courage also the reporter for her sense of something was just not right. Laura Robinson and the editors publisher should be commended not attacked but thats what they do attack the messenger.
11
11
Rating: 0
Elizabeth P
Thank you, Laura. Many of those who need empowerment in speaking up for themselves, who need to know they will be heard and believed will be reading this. These issues are disturbing to learn about and frightening to take action about; I have great admiration for you, Laura, for bringing this to the public; I am grateful to the victims for their courage in taking the steps towards their healing.
13
10
Rating: +3
white bear
With you GS & Robinson. You both have long-tine excellent credibility. Blessings. And may Mr. Furlong stand up like a Man!
12
8
Rating: +4
Incredyoulush
I just found the article poorly written, kind of piecemeal and more vague than hard-hitting and conclusive. It sounds like this has been in the works for a good long while, but the article itself feels kind of rushed and thrown together. I assume the whole bit about his cousin was supposed to act as yet more 'evidence' of his lying past, but it seemed more like filler, as if the writer didn't have enough to write about, so she thought she'd tag that bit on toward the end. Same with all this stuff about him being in Prince George, the phone book, etc. -- such inconsequential details. This is a story that should have dealt with the allegations from start to finish, with maybe a brief mention of him omitting from his book that he originally came to Canada in 1969, but it just seems Robinson didn't have enough 'dirt' to fill two pages, and the article flags as a result. This article, the way it's written, with so many holes, would not see the light of day in a Globe and Mail or even a Toronto Star. True or not, It's junky reporting nonetheless.
6
9
Rating: -3
Salty One
Furlong is being handled by public relations pros now. What we're seeing, hearing and thinking about is what the expertise he's marshalled has strategized. He's got money and he's going to fight to keep up the perception that he didn't do anything. He's already deftly planted the seed of doubt about the Straight and about the reporter and by attacking them all focus is lost on the victims. It's a shame the exact allegations outlined in the eight affidavits weren't published in their entirety. Something's there. My guess? This is going to court where it will spend a very long time. This is a man with means. He'll fight, stall, drag out and bleed the other side dry. Look for more discredited attacks against the reporter too. This isn't someone with nothing to lose. This is someone with a legend larger than life to lose.
7
8
Rating: -1
SarahS
Can't believe it: investigative journalism! In Vancouver! In Canada! It still exists. Thanks to the Georgia Straight and Laura Robinson for your journalistic integrity and belief in the truth. Perhaps it will encourage our 5th Estate to get a backbone. Nah, never going to happen. (though to be fair, there are good journalists left in Canada, and a few good news outlets).

Why did Furlong hide 5 years of his life BC? Well, now we know. Respect to the people who came forward with their stories. So sorry you had to endure such suffering.
9
8
Rating: +1
Sean Mcready
Be careful....if its true, let justice run its course...if its not true, then a disservice is being done to real victims of abuse. The article is poorly written and a poor help to potentially real victims. If untrue, then the defamation has to be answered by Robinson. Either way, it has been handled poorly to this point.
12
2
Rating: +10
Alan Layton
I'm old and I'm tired of the constant bashing that goes on in our society. If he were poor, downtrodden or unsuccessful he'd be given a second chance to redeem himself. If he was tough on people when he was younger, he certainly gave back to society in spades as he got older. He may be a task masker now and will always piss some people off but to me this is just revenge rather than preventing others from being as harsh. The world is not black and white. Even good people have had some bad episodes in their lives and we all need a break once in awhile.
10
6
Rating: +4
onthefence
Amusing to see how many folks here defending the story break and denouncing JF as if he is already guilty in the court of the public eye?

Whatever happened to innocent until proven guilty?

If it turns out to be true - roast away and shame on JF. Until then though it really is accusations already tainted with threats of blackmail.

All reported from the same person who previously was so irresponsible in her reporting based purely on her opinion that the sport of hockey encourages violence (what rubbish).

Who knows if she has it right this time - but burning posters for wondering if there are deeper motives (perhaps to break a real story for a change, personal vendetta, etc.) seems bit overboard. After all, it may turn out the only victim may be JF himself, if not the reported accusers.

RCMP and legal action upcoming will reveal if there is any truth. Until then really no one side is right or wrong. Not sure how anyone can have a side or opinion to support when simply all we have is an article stating affidavits and another side alleging blackmail...
8
8
Rating: 0

Pages

Add new comment
To prevent automated spam submissions leave this field empty.