Morning! In case you were having a blissful morning, here's some harsh reality for you. Wendy Kaminer (who has also, charmingly, supported the Citizens United decision and criticized the ACLU for voicing disapproval of the Redskins team name) continues her habit of asserting her progressive cred and then immediately turning around to make a conservative argument today by wondering if protections for victims of rape on college campuses will infringe on the rights of rapists. Her piece appears on the NPR blog Cognoscenti.
Once, government and university officials hunted down suspected communists and communist sympathizers on campus. Today, they're targeting campus sexual predators — alleged harassers and rapists — with similar disregard for civil liberty.
Yes, being accused of rape is just like being persecuted for one's political beliefs! Never mind that one is a violent crime and the other is an ideology.
In part it reflects a "progressive" ideological commitment to assuming that a self-identified victim's recollection of a sexual encounter is absolutely, objectively true.
Funny how she doesn't acknowledge that, currently, our culture tends to do the opposite. We assume rape victims are liars (or sluts or drunks or regretful or just misunderstanding what happened), and we silence, disbelieve, and ostracize them while their rapists rarely face social or legal consequences. (If you didn't read it the first time around, you really should read "Woody Allen's Good Name," about our collective tendency to extend the benefit of the doubt to people like Woody Allen, but not to Dylan Farrow.)
Advocates of this conviction bias tend to trivialize the consequences of guilty findings in campus cases. Since campuses are not courts of law, students are "merely" suspended or expelled, not convicted of crimes and subject to imprisonment.
I mean, I'd rather be expelled than imprisoned, but hey, that's just me. Are we really entertaining the idea that we're "trivializing" explusion (which, let's remember, is just as much to protect other students as it is to punish student rapists) by recognizing that it's not on the same level as a rape conviction and a stint in the big house?
Go home, Wendy. Nobody likes you.