Trump administration restores due process rights in sexual assault cases
Reports say Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos is crafting new Title IX guidelines with regard to sexual assault on college campuses. The new, as-yet-unofficial guidelines allow schools to introduce elements of traditional due process, such as cross-examination, into the quasi-courtroom proceedings many universities use for sexual assault accusations, and draw stricter boundaries around harassment claims.I continue to be of the opinion that all sexual assault cases should be handled by the local district attorney and not the school. The school should limit itself to turning over the evidence it has found. The justice system is better equipped to defend the rights of both the accused and teh alleged victim.
Feminists have been quick to paint the Trump administration as callous toward rape victims, claiming the changes would “tip the playing field towards those accused.” In reality, due process guarantees have been gutted across the country in an attempt to adjudicate ambiguous cases, in which both the alleged perpetrator and victim are often intoxicated.
Examples of serious miscarriage of justice abound across the country.
A James Madison University student was accused of sexual assault in 2014. After initially clearing him, the university “tried” him a second time, in what a real court would consider double jeopardy, and suspended him for five years. His accuser was a woman with whom he had sex several times and communicated with for a week before she caught another girl in his room, after which she claimed that their first sexual encounter had been nonconsensual. It took two years for him to be vindicated in federal court.
In an another recent egregious case, a black student is taking Brown University to court for discrimination after the university disciplined him, and eventually ran him off campus, for an incident behind a bar where a white female “bit, choked, and pinned him” aggressively while kissing him, but later filed a sexual assault complaint.
The Obama guidelines have produced a system of adjudication so absurd and unfair that victim and perpetrator can be determined by which party to a drunken hookup files with the administration first.