Let’s Start with the good stuff this week:
How great is this? The USC Walkout for a Safer Campus. At least 100 USC students staged a demonstration around that disgusting frat email we were all alerted to a few weeks ago. Key to their protest was the lack of a substantive administrative response.
Hey Canadian students—I am loving SlutWalk.
And now, the week takes a turn for the frustrating:
Discussion and student unrest with the school’s policy continues at Reed. Reed’s policy is currently in our Campus Accountability Project Policies Database, but I would encourage Reed students to check out what is there and submit their own commentary. Just email CAP [at] safercampus [dot] org. You can even do it as part of Sexual Assault Activism Month!
Inside Higher Ed has an interesting feature this month on sexual harassment among in the philosophy department. The article well-worth a longer analysis, but the stand-out take-away for me is the lack of recourse students and faculty members are finding on campus. They are finding their own ways to respond, like shunning certain faculty members from conferences, but schools should be taking a more active response and not leaving it up to individuals on campus.
Amanda Hess continues to cover the drama unfolding at American, which continues to blow my mind. Check out this exchange between a student who had been a victim of assault and the school’s VP:
After publicly discussing her experience being sexually assaulted at American University, student Nicole Wisler confronted Hanson about why she refused to sign off on mandatory sexual assault trainings at the school. “I’ve had stops placed on my account for library fines, disciplinary things . . . and yes, it was uncomfortable, it was frustrating,” Wisler said. “I was also sexually assaulted. That was really uncomfortable.” Added Wisler: “Sacrificing the discomfort of a few students who might not complete it in the first amount of time versus the safety of 400 students seems ludicrous to me. And that’s what I can’t get past.”
“I know you know your equation doesn’t work,” Hanson replied. “But I mean, it’s an emotional thing. It gets applause. But if I sign that grant, sexual assault on this campus is not going to be ended.”
Yup, sexual assault: it’s emotional, it gets applause. Nice.
Finally, of all the terrible things I have read lately, this has got to be up there as one of the worst. At Berea College in Kentucky, last month a student filed a lawsuit against the school after being sexually assaulted by one of the school’s sociology professors. The professor had established a mentoring role of sorts, and apparently was acting as a “role model” for the student’s child. He invited the student to come study at his house, and then, according to the student, assaulted her.
The school has responded to the lawsuit with this LOVELY language: “All the injuries and damages …. were caused and brought about by her own negligence and/or intentional act which was a substantial factor in bringing about … injuries and damages.”
Yes, you got it. She was sexually assaulted because of her negligence. Because she went to the home of someone she trusted, she brought it all on herself. You’ve GOT to be kidding me.