Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Colleges lack due process

A reader asks for a specific example of how the Pres. Barack Obama administration has been anti-men.

His VP, Joe Biden, brags that his proudest political accomplishment has been the Violence Against Women Act.

Colleges get a lot of federal money, and are subject to a lot of federal regulations. What do you think happens if a college professor or student is accused of sexual misconduct. Would a man be considered innocent until proven guilty? The answer is no -- not under Obama administration regulations.

Joseph Cohn carefully explains the arguments for and against a presumption of innocence:
On October 1, I penned an article for The Chronicle of Higher Education arguing that the Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights' (OCR's) insistence that colleges and universities use the "preponderance of the evidence" standard when adjudicating accusations of sexual misconduct was wrong. OCR says the standard must be used on campus because it is the standard used in federal courts for civil suits. But OCR's comparison of campus tribunals with federal courts is deeply flawed because it fails to take into account the many due process protections required in federal courts that ensure the basic fairness of trials—protections that aren't required or commonly provided on campus.

In response to my piece, Nancy Hogshead-Makar, the senior director of advocacy at the Women's Sports Foundation, and Brett A. Sokolow, the founder of the National Center for Higher Education Risk Management, have authored a Chronicle op-ed of their own.

Hogshead-Makar and Sokolow do not attempt to refute my point that the comparison of campus tribunals to federal courts is inexact. Instead, they broadly argue that OCR's mandate is appropriate for three reasons: (1) they claim an institution's use of any standard higher than preponderance of the evidence may be considered "deliberate indifference" by a federal court, thus potentially subjecting a university that employs a higher standard to liability for violating Title IX; (2) they claim that the preponderance of the evidence standard is the only fair standard on a normative basis; and (3) they claim that the preponderance of the evidence standard protects the best interests of the colleges, the students, and the employees. All three arguments are faulty.
So a boy may be accused of sexually harassing a girl, and then he will get kicked out of college because the college was more concerned with protecting itself from Title IX liability.

The article has a link to a defender of the Obama policies, so you can read it yourself.

Keep in mind that if a boy is accused of a crime such as rape, the accuser can always make a police complaint and get a criminal prosecution. The accuser can also file a civil lawsuit. These college regulations apply when there is no criminal or civil complaint, but a girl tries to get a boy kicked out of college for non-criminal behavior.

The colleges ought to be treating their own employees and students as being innocent until proven guilty. And they ought to have due-process protections for anyone facing career-ending accusations. But thanks to the Obama administration, the colleges now have feminist-written policies that force an accused man to prove his innocence.

1 comment:

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