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Due process of law is just so 19th Century

As some in the US will know there have been moves to ensure that when a university/college student (usually male) is accused of rape or some other form of sexual assault, the matter must be handled by a court of law, not simply for the accused to be put in front of some sort of academic panel and, without even hearing from an accuser or with a chance to challenge the version of events, can be expelled, and hence ruined for life. (Here are comments from a while ago from Tim Worstall.)

UK journalist and documentary-maker Louis Theroux thinks that when a person is acquitted by a court of law, that’s not the end of the matter. Perhaps he is a bit fuzzy on his understanding of the law of libel. When I trained as a reporter, I distinctly remember that articles about a person who was acquitted of sex assault must never imply that somehow the verdict was, you know, not the end of the matter and that X or Y was probably a bit dodgy, to be shunned and avoided, etc. (In reality, of course, social ostracism is still a factor and people who are thought of as “having got away with it” might find their lives get more difficult. To some extent that’s inevitable.)

Anyway, here he writes:

“There are two different standards. There’s a criminal standard in which you go to prison, but just because you haven’t been found guilty of a crime doesn’t mean that you haven’t done anything wrong – that you haven’t made someone very uncomfortable and possible committed a gross violation.”

Theroux says that just because a person has been acquitted by a jury does not mean there aren’t problems. Well, up to a point. The reason we have juries, due process, burdens of proof, etc, is because it is considered better to avoid innocent people being wrongly accused of crimes, even if it means a criminal goes free. Given how emotions can and do run high, risks of mistrials are large. (This is arguably even more so when public figures are implicated.)

The fact that universities and other entities hold less onerous tests of guilt than courts is not something to celebrate and at the very least, a student who joins a university should be made aware that they could be accused of bad conduct, expelled, and so on, even if their case does not go to court. That’s unlikely to encourage people to go to these places, particularly in the current climate where men are presumed to be “toxic”. (It is worth adding that recruits to the armed forces can go to a court martial that holds slightly different standards to a civilian court, at least under the English Common Law, and that recruits are to some extent waiving due process protections by signing the dotted line. Maybe a student should be asked to do the same.)

Theroux takes what I think is a rather odd turn in arguing that maybe sex assault/rape should not be such serious offences so it would be okay to bypass the courts and still get the perpetrators. I think I have got that right:

“If you define rape very, very narrowly – as it was, someone being dragged behind a bush – it kind of gives license to anyone who sexually assaults someone in a way that’s not as bad as that to sort of say ‘Well, I’m not a rapist’.

One of the signs that we live in mad times is the way that the bar is being lowered, it seems, as far as accusations of ill conduct are concerned and over how traditional checks and balances over this are being eroded. The erosion is being called for in plain sight. And scarily, there appears to be relatively little objection to this.

38 comments to Due process of law is just so 19th Century

  • George Atkisson

    All that matters to SJW True Believers is that the Narrative reigns supreme, the designated Oppressors are destroyed, and the designated victims are exalted and held blameless. Virtue may then be signaled from the mountain tops and across social media. Truth, justice, due process, cross examination, the law itself are all just social constructs by the Patriarchy and other Oppressors to crush their victims and deny them their revolutionary justice.

    You all need to dump Western Civilization and get with the program! Stat!

  • FrankH

    “…it is considered better to avoid innocent people being wrongly accused of crimes.”

    I think you mean being wrongly convicted. If innocent people were never accused there would be no point in having judges, juries, trials etc. Just accuse the guilty then string ’em up.

  • Alsadius

    In principle, I don’t mind university expulsions being tried on a balance-of-probabilities scale instead of a beyond-a-reasonable-doubt scale. BARD is for criminal trials where we jail people, while BOP is used for civil suits where it’s going to be money changing hands one way or the other. A tribunal where expulsion is across the table from having to attend class with one’s rapist feels a lot more like a civil suit than a criminal trial to me. And of course, a university is as free as any other similar institution to freely dis-associate with people they dislike.

    Of course, there’s two big issues here. First, even civil trials have rules of evidence, a chance for both sides to be heard, and so on. Without that, the process is inherently unfair, which is inevitably terrible. Second, there’s a lot of movement away from bringing the cases to criminal trials at all, which is both horrible and deeply confusing. If someone’s raped you, you should want them locked up where they can’t rape anyone else. Kicking them out of school doesn’t actually do anything to protect anyone else.

  • The Pedant-General

    Jeez but he has no idea what he’s doing:

    “it kind of gives license to anyone who sexually assaults someone in a way that’s not as bad as that to sort of say ‘Well, I’m not a rapist’.”

    That’s not the problem. The problem is that reducing the due process protections for the accused gives licence to malicious false accusations. This problem of increasing the likelihood of false accusations is MUCH MUCH worse that the supposed problem of saying “well I’m not a rapist”.

  • James Strong

    I had the misfortune to sit on a jury in a rape trial.

    I was very impressed with the seriousness with which all 12 of us carried out the duty.

    We acquitted because we believed that the complainant consented and then regretted it afterwards.

    I suspect that post-coital regret is not unknown, but let’s not blame the other patner in the sex act for that and potentially wreck his life.

  • James Strong

    How is it possible to define rape very.vety narrowly or very.very broadly?

    Isn’t the definitiuon 100% clear?

  • MadRocketSci

    I once had some kind of check-the-box trainer in the US Air Force declare to me “You think reality is reality, but it’s not. *Perception* is reality. That is the standard by which you will be judged. Not by what you did, but by what other people think of you.”

    Even as young and unaware as I was, I was creeped out. It’s perhaps the most outrageous statement I’ve ever heard from a *military* officer. I would have thought that the military is a very reality-grounded sort of field, where there are immediate Darwinian consequences for your perception running far afield of the facts. I subsequently heard that phrase “perception is reality” from many higher-ups. The ruin of a nation lies in that dogma. Vaguely reminiscent of “Who is John Galt?”. It’s a license to ignore reality and believe falsehoods.

    In the context of being accused of misconduct, I only have control over my actions. I have absolutely no say in the fantasies running through the heads of crazy-people.

  • MadRocketSci

    Maybe it’s even true in some very narrow sense that shouldn’t be allowed to jump its context: That vicious little social monkeys, untrained in civilization, dispense merciless punishment and fawning adoration based on where you are in some glorified pecking order. The facts are made up after the matter to rationalize what the mob has already decided. Still creepy.

  • MadRocketSci

    PS – (Warding off the internet conduct tribunal of a dystopian future coming to you next week): I wasn’t accused of misconduct. It was training for avoiding accusations of misconduct. Under the standards being taught, accusations were *unrelated* to conduct, so there was really no point. :/

  • Lee Moore

    Something of a tangent, I concede, but while we’re on the “due process of law” I just saw this startling exchange. Folk may be aware that Trudeau the Younger is in a spot of bother at the moment having lost an Attorney General in connection with, or adjacent to, or merely in the neighborhood of, an alleged interference in the “due process of law.” The resigning Attorney General got replaced by the fellow in the clip. Fun starts at minute 7:22

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BvO3u0i36eY

    TV interviewer : ‘But if someone approached you and said an election was at stake would that be a persuasive argument to you ?”

    Canadian Attorney General David Lametti : “Again it depends on the context; the leading case from the UK.. ..well the leading case…”

    TV interviewer : “So wait, ah sorry, just to stop you there – but an election could be a reason for an Attorney General to interfere in a criminal prosecution, that would be appropriate ?”

    Canadian Attorney General David Lametti : “I’m not saying it would be appropriate or inappropriate”

  • Nullius in Verba

    “Theroux says that just because a person has been acquitted by a jury does not mean there aren’t problems. Well, up to a point. The reason we have juries, due process, burdens of proof, etc, is because it is considered better to avoid innocent people being wrongly accused of crimes, even if it means a criminal goes free.”

    Considered by some. Some anti-rape activists would no doubt argue that there are practical reasons for applying “collective guilt” if that’s needed to “win the war” against rape. 🙂

    But it seems to me there are two separate issues here: what activities should be considered crimes, and the standard of evidence with which they need to be proved. The quotes are about changing the first issue – making other sorts of unwanted sexual behaviour criminal, or at least punishable. The comment about juries is with regard to the second issue – the right to a fair hearing. The issues are independent. You could change the definition of the crimes (or socially disapproved behaviours) without lowering the standards of evidence demanded to prove them.

    “A tribunal where expulsion is across the table from having to attend class with one’s rapist feels a lot more like a civil suit than a criminal trial to me.”

    Presumably the same goes for expulsion versus having to attend class with someone who falsely accused you of rape?

    If you try to impose on an innocent the punishment society normally doles out to rapists (or suspected rapists), that’s pretty nasty, too. Should that be ‘Balance of Probability’ as well?

    “How is it possible to define rape very.vety narrowly or very.very broadly? Isn’t the definitiuon 100% clear?”

    Lawyers can find ambiguity in anything! There are numerous grey areas in the definition of consent.

    Like: “I only consent to sex if you are actually going to marry me within the next year.” Is that consent?

    “You think reality is reality, but it’s not. *Perception* is reality. That is the standard by which you will be judged. Not by what you did, but by what other people think of you.”

    Reality may be reality, but perception is where we all live. We don’t have any direct access to reality – we can only see it through the murky window of perception.

    It’s a sensible dictum if interpreted sensibly. It doesn’t mean reality is illusory, it means that people can be deceived, or in error about reality. A large part of military strategy is about manipulating the perceptions of the enemy. PsyOps and deception are hugely important. And so I’d expect any sort of military training to emphasise the point – and to be constantly aware that the enemy can deceive you too.

    We’re all fallible. But it’s truly amazing how many people seem not to be aware of it!

    “Under the standards being taught, accusations were *unrelated* to conduct, so there was really no point.”

    But accusations *are* related to how your conduct will be perceived. So you need to conduct yourself in a manner that ensures the desired perception.

  • Sam Duncan

    “The problem is that reducing the due process protections for the accused gives licence to malicious false accusations.”

    Oh, but nobody would ever do that!

    I wish I’d watched Theroux’s show the other night, just to see what kind of spurious arguments he came up with. But I really can’t stand the sight of the guy any more. In the trailers for this series, there was a moment where a woman was quoting the Bible at him, ending with, “That’s you, Louis. You are a mocker…”. Cut to him sitting with his patient-and-reasonable face on. Clearly we were supposed to think the woman was unhinged. But all that was going through my head was, ”You tell him, girl!” Louis Theroux is representative of everything that’s wrong with the BBC, and modern journalism in general.

  • pete

    Theroux works for the BBC and is therefore putting the politically correct, establishment view.

    At least he isn’t head of the CPS like Alison Saunders was.

  • James Strong asked:

    How is it possible to define rape very, very narrowly or very.very broadly?
    Isn’t the definition 100% clear?

    You would be unpleasantly surprised. In Sweden, the definition is quite broad: digital penetration is according to a 2018 ruling from the Supreme Court, rape, and sex with a sick -not mentally sick, just ill- partner is statutory rape. In the case of Julian Assange, the rape charges -now dropped- relied on the fact that in one case, the woman had wanted to reach for a condom, and he had allegedly not let her. Assange disputed this. In the second case, the woman affirms that she awoke and felt him penetrating her.” She asked if he was wearing a condom and said, “You better don’t have HIV.” This second woman had texted a friend saying: “I was half asleep.” Her statement in the police depositions reads: “He was already inside her and she let him continue.” “She didn’t have the energy to tell him one more time. She had gone on and on about condoms all night long.”

    The best of it all: the evidence where there is no violence or coercion, lies mostly in the testimony of the plaintiff who can since July 2018, take advantage of the statutory standard of an explicit consent before intercourse, and of definitions for negligent rape which is “conscious negligence or more serious forms of unconscious negligence” in obtaining the needed consent (Statens Offentliga Utredningar [SOU] 2016:60 Ett starkare skydd för den sexuella integriteten [Stronger Protection for Sexual Integrity], at 269.) The test as described in the final bill is whether the person could and did do all the things necessary to determine whether consent was actually received. More here.

    The crux of it is that unless you are willing to tape the whole event obtaining every form or legal consent required in the UE General Data Protection Regulation -which although legal, I believe to be bad manners-, you are very much at the mercy of an unscrupulous partner.

    So, the standard of evidence both it is of the essence. The now-rescinded, standard in U.S. colleges was a “preponderance of evidence”, which in real life equals whether it was more likely than not that the rape or sexual assault had taken place. The new standard reinstated by Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, is now that of “clear and convincing evidence.” In my opinion, a triumph by the Office for Civil Rights of the Education Department. Credit where it is due.

  • My problem with all of the above is dead simple. I watched the O.J. Simpson trial and while I accept the verdict, there is no way that I would call it a reflection of justice.

    As for the University kangaroo courts, making them suffer through the real courts when sued by their abusive behaviour in their kangaroo courts and the massive falls in student numbers through the media seems to be gradually (very gradually) having an effect.

    If I had a son I would tell him to stay well clear of Universities and women infected with the mind virus of Radical feminism or Social Justice Warriors.

    Far too dangerous. As my dad used to say “Don’t stick your dick in crazy”.

  • bobby b

    “Due process” is too often used as a catch-all term for “justice.” That’s not what it means.

    “Procedural due process of law” is a procedural guarantee of two things – notice, and an opportunity to be heard.

    (There is also a creature called “substantive due process”, which doesn’t apply here.)

    In a legal system that has established processes and procedures for criminal and civil actions, you must receive adequate notice of charges against you, and notice of the time and place of the proceedings that will be used to determine your fate, and then you must have a reasonable opportunity to go into those proceedings and offer your defense against those charges.

    If you enroll in a college that has published a process for handling complaints of bad behavior (that don’t rise to the level of a criminal violation, which should properly be referred to public authorities), the concept of “due process” guarantees that you have the right to hear the charges against you, and to then defend yourself from those charges within the process set up by the school.

    If you stay in school after learning of their processes, you voluntarily subject yourself to those processes.

    The school can’t take away your liberty or property like the state can. The school can only exercise its associational rights, by expelling you from the community if you are found to have violated its rules.

    If a school violates its own procedural rules for determining whether you have violated its code of conduct, it has denied to you “due process.” If the school is deemed a government actor – takes public funds, etc. – then you may have a case for a due process violation. If the school is completely private, you’re generally out of luck – the “due process” guarantees only apply to “the state.” (You may have a case for breach of contract.)

    If the school then offers your name to the public as a “rapist” – a defined legal term in the jurisdiction – when it has only found that you have violated its own non-criminal rules of conduct – the school will have libeled you.

    But the school retains its right to decide who may be a member of its community, and if you enroll in a school that has given you notice that an unfair, biased process is the process they will use to judge you, you have made a poor choice, but a binding one.

    (ETA: This is all USA-specific.)

  • Julie near Chicago

    If I were MadRocketSci’s advisor on conduct in the military, I hope I’d have said it a little more like this:

    “You think reality is reality, so to speak, but actually people’s *Perception* shapes the social reality in which you have to live and with which you have to cope.”

    But it’s not as pithy a maxim, of course. :>(

    .

    I can only concur with Nullius’s remarks above — his last six paragraphs — concerning MadRocketSci’s comment. They state pretty much what I thought as I read the latter. (Except that nothing can “ensure” you’re properly perceived, since how you’re perceived is in the eyes of the perceiver. The best you can do is to conduct yourself well, according to the standards of the situation: in a way that won’t deserve rational condemnation by the well-informed.)

    Our judgments of people (even including ourselves sometimes) are based on our perceptions — on what we see or think we see, hopefully after viewing through the lens of rationality* (and partly based also on our emotional reaction to the individual himself).

    *Or of what we think is rationality, anyhow — another pothole in the Road to Truth exists in the possibility that our reasoning is wrong in a given case.

    .

    Which is why I don’t support capital punishment.

    .

    On the other hand, were I on the receiving end of the advice as originally stated, my reaction would probably have been very much along the lines of “Oh, so how I actually act doesn’t matter — it’s how I look to everybody else. Talk about Social Metaphysics!” (Followed by seething about how Reality is not in fact controlled by anyone’s opinion or perception of it.) That’s why it would be better edited, and followed perhaps by a brief expansion like Nullius’s.

    .

    If anyone wants a recent example of how a person’s “social reality” — that is, the reality of the social climate in which he lives and with which he must cope — is based on the perceptions of members of society, take a look at the recent incident of the Covington Kids, who were unjustly vilified nationally and internationally and who must now cope with horrible aspersions cast on them by people whose “perceptions,” if such they really were, were dreadfully wrong.

  • As Bobby says, due process and crime definition are two separat points. I think it worth distinguishing two other separate points.

    1) You can define crimes strictly and have everyone sure that those who commit them are indeed evil, or you can define crimes very broadly, and have more and more people be less and less shocked by them. Similarly, you can have a lot of due process, and widespread knowledge that the guilty too-often flourish like the green bay tree, or the sort of process that convicts more reliably and is less trusted.

    Better a hundred guilty men go free than one innocent man be convicted

    is a well known quote, but actually people do not want to live in a world where only one murder in every hundred gets solved, not least because in such a world the guilty will be able to form powerful gangs that ensure the one who is convected is just such an innocent – a framed cop who tried to resist them, for example. The quote is a false dichotomy. Only in a world where the law already has some teeth does causing more convictions create more risk of causing more wrongful convictions than causing fewer convictions would.

    All this is before the PC agenda gets involved. The problem of ‘knowing’ (feeling pretty sure) that someone should not have been acquitted long pre-dates modern PC and happens when there is no agenda.

    And circa 1920 there was another very famous case which fits my definition, but which I had better not mention by name because the accused man was acquitted. (George Orwell, ‘The decline of the English Murder’, quoted from memory)

    2) PC means systemic corruption – or the fear of it. A thoroughly left-wing friend (then in the states) emailed me angrily in the latter part of the 90s, complaining that when those he would normally support covered the OJ Simpson trial, they blatantly refused to see “the mere instrumentality of his race” in his successful (then) attempts to evade an obviously just conviction. Once a certain degree of corruption is reached then, as in certain University kangaroo ‘courts’, the checks and balances argument of (1) is eclipsed by the knowledge that cases are decided politically. And that is a different discussion again.

  • bobby b

    “In the context of being accused of misconduct, I only have control over my actions.”

    But . . .

    If you are arrested and tried for rape, and found guilty and punished, you aren’t being punished for having raped. You’re being punished because the system, through use of its investigative and adjudicative processes, has determined that you raped.

    There’s actually a huge difference.

  • Louis Theroux is representative of everything that’s wrong with the BBC, and modern journalism in general. (Sam Duncan, March 6, 2019 at 5:45 pm)

    While Louis may merit many criticisms (I think he merits some for what the OP reports him saying), either he has lost a certain openness he had around the turn of the millennium (possible of course – society has certainly lost it) or he is not as representative of what is wrong as many another beeboid. In the days before the web really got going to break the PC veil, it was courtesy of Louis Theroux that I knew, for example, that there was more to Eddie and Vicky Weaver being shot on Ruby Ridge than the Clintons liked people to know. Partly, that was thinking beyond the information he provided, but he was sometimes a bit off narrative at that time, or at least a bit more informative than the narrative liked.

  • Fraser Orr

    @bobby your legal background as ever shines a great light on this. However, there is something that you are omitting. AFAIK every school accepts money from the government either directly or via government guaranteed student loans. That money often comes with strings attached, such as the infamous “Dear Coleague” letters. It is these letters, issued by bureaucrats at the Dept Of Education that insists on these kangaroo courts. So our government, which is bound by the constitution to provide certain rights to its citizens, is the instigator. Now there surely is massive a difference between being expelled from a school and being tossed in prison. But that isn’t to say it isn’t an outrageous way to behave.

    Moreover, the free market solution is to set up an alternative to these schools that don’t have these outrageous rules, but government intervention in the market makes this almost impossible, except for a few extreme examples.

    College education is a disastrous mess in this country — I am in the process of sending one of my kids off to college and the more I find out about it the more horrified I am. Realistically I think that a college education is not worth it any more, though for a kid like mine it probably is.

    Quite simply, what some colleges do is verging on fraud. “Take this degree and you will have a great career ahead of you”. So some callow child takes a degree in Medieval French Poetry, graduates with $200,000 in debt and finds himself barely qualified to work in Starbucks. I am sure it isn’t technically fraud, but it sure looks and smells a lot like fraud.

    The cost is outrageous, the quality of education provided is outrageous, the social conditions are outrageous, and the oppression of free speech double plus outrageous. If it is treated as a vocational training school, and you can get them to massively discount the cost through so called merit scholarships, then it is maybe worthwhile. However, the days of the liberal arts education producing a well rounded adult are long gone, and the system of government provided student loans has utterly destroyed the system.

    BTW, I think the solution is fairly simple, even if impossible in the regulatory climate. Simply speaking, a college could provide a degree for zero cost with the agreement that the student would give them 15% of their gross earnings for the next fifteen years. (Specific numbers to be tweaked.) It perfectly sets the incentives — it incentivizes the colleges to provide a quality education at a reasonable cost, that will actually provide kids what they want — an education that will lead to a job and career to set them up for adulthood. This alone, along with a decent competitive environment would transform the education system in a very positive way.

  • William O. B'Livion

    Realistically I think that a college education is not worth it any more, though for a kid like mine it probably is.

    This is what half the parents who send their kids to college think.

    I think most of them would do a lot better after a tour in the Army or Marines, or if you’re opposed to the military, the Air Force.

  • Like Fraser Orr (March 6, 2019 at 9:59 pm), I feel that what modern university lecturers tell their students about exploitative capitalism is actually a description of their own business.

  • Julie near Chicago

    Fraser, there are a few schools that accept no government funding whatsoever, including even student loans made by the (or, I assume, a) government.

    Hillsdale College in Michigan

    https://www.hillsdale.edu/

    is maybe the most well-known of these, and no lesser a light than Richard Epstein — prof at NYU Law School, Prof Emeritus and Senior Lecturer at the U. of Chicago, devout Classical Liberal, Director of the Classical Liberal Institute at NYU, and on and on and on — has said that Hillsdale graduates are among his best law-school students. Hillsdale is a liberal-arts college which also has a graduate school that grants doctorates. It describes itself as “a non-sectarian Christian institution,” but the campus paper (The Collegian) did an informal online survey of the student body, and reports that

    ‘ After the top two results on religious demographics [Catholic and Protestant], 8.1 percent of respondents said they are “not religious,” and another 7.1 percent claimed “other religious affiliation.” ‘

    http://hillsdalecollegian.com/2018/10/hillsdales-religious-demographics-unusual-christian-school-survey-shows/

    It offers degree programs in economics and science, as well in the humanities.

    https://www.hillsdale.edu/academics/majors-minors/

    .

    Grove City College in Pennsylvania also accepts no Federal funds. (Historian Paul Kengor was a professor there.)

    http://www.gcc.edu/Home/Admissions-Financial-Aid/Financial-Aid-Scholarships/Financial-Aid-Information/Forms-Policies-Calculators/Statement-on-Federal-Funding

    .

    There are more conservative colleges out there, some of which also take no government funding (I think). Most of them are Christian at least at root.

    .

    Maybe all that will help? Anyway, good luck.

    Of course you have my own alma mater right there next door (U. of Chicago), which is still very good in the sciences at least. Unfortunately the Law School as I’m sure you know saw fit to hire that Obama doofus and Cass Sunstein, as well as Richard. And now I guess the illustrious Midway and Jackson Park are going to be defiled by the Obama Library. At least a bunch of professors did write a letter of complaint … Richard among them.

    But I’m winding up for a righteous O/T rant, so I think I will stop here and soothe my feelings with some supper. :>)

  • Julie near Chicago

    Addendum: But of course, UC definitely gets big bucks in U.S. grant money, and I’m sure they don’t mind accepting students who are supported by government student loans. Also, UC is not cheap, although I don’t know how its fees stack up against those of the other Universities.

    .

    Also, I’ve read that Hillsdale is not as expensive as many schools. And it does conduct its own student loan program, I believe, though how this works I have no idea.

    I don’t mean to be pushing Hillsdale, by the way. It’s just that it’s an example of a conservative college with a good track record of producing well-educated students at a reasonable price, with no governmentally provided funding of any sort, and which is thereby able to escape a lot of the pernicious government regs. I think Grove City is the same sort of place, though with maybe a little more emphasis on the practice of Christianity.

    .

    Also, the Constitution doesn’t “grant” rights to people; supposedly, it serves to protect the rights that people have in virtue of being people. (“From Nature, or from Nature’s God,” roughly.)
    .

    Just a note — AFAIK, the Constitution nowhere empowers the Federal Government to have anything to do with education. The Dept. of Ed. is a recent confection; I suppose it was deemed allowable under the so-called “General Welfare Clause.”

    This is one place where, if I understand him correctly, I agree with Richard (lucky him! *g*): “Promote the general welfare” is more reasonably taken to mean the welfare of the States as political entities than as meaning the welfare of the individual citizens.

  • Roué le Jour

    It’s all very well arguing about what should happen after allegations are made, but the objective must be that there are no incidents that need to be resolved in the first place, and that can only be achieved by returning to single sex education. Having large numbers of young people mixed together when their hormones are running at max boost will inevitably lead to incidents which are later regretted. You can’t stop young people having ill-advised liaisons, but you can prevent those liaisons interfering in that person’s education.

  • Nullius in Verba

    “but the objective must be that there are no incidents that need to be resolved in the first place,”

    Not very liberal, though, is it?

    “and that can only be achieved by returning to single sex education.”

    So only gay sex?

    “Having large numbers of young people mixed together when their hormones are running at max boost will inevitably lead to incidents which are later regretted.”

    They’ve got to learn some time. And learning inevitably involves making mistakes.

    “You can’t stop young people having ill-advised liaisons”

    But wasn’t that the aim of “but the objective must be that there are no incidents that need to be resolved in the first place”?

    I suggest that the problem is the ‘woke’ courtship ritual has changed and become more complicated, and the boys in particular don’t know how to do it, and trial-and-error experimentation results in errors leading to trials.

    So the answer surely is to teach it formally. How do you find a compatible partner and start a relationship when you need consent for every step and when asking for consent is itself a step you need consent for, and where refused consent hurts, so people don’t want to be seen to ask unless they’re sure the answer will be “yes”? Most don’t know how, so they go ahead and keep their fingers crossed their partner doesn’t mind, but it’s a bit hit-and-miss. What’s the proper protocol?

    Either that, or be more tolerant of well-intentioned errors.

  • Roué le Jour

    NiV,
    I’ve always admired your Jesuit level sophistry and am flattered you consider one of my comments worthy of your attention.

    Not very liberal, though, is it?
    So if I were to suggest it would be better to have no murders rather than improve the procedures for dealing with murderers, you would disagree?

    So only gay sex?
    Chaps tend not to get other chaps sent down.

    They’ve got to learn some time. And learning inevitably involves making mistakes.
    Of course, but it is the job of the adults to see that youthful mistakes are indeed learned from, rather than regretted for the rest of a destroyed life.

    But wasn’t that the aim of “but the objective must be that there are no incidents that need to be resolved in the first place”?
    Nope. I would have thought that “by the college” following “resolved” would have been obvious, but apparently not.

    By fretting over consent you are falling into the feminist trap. Consent has nothing to do with it. A chap can be accused of a sexual offense for rebuffing a hopeful female in the refectory. A whole group of chaps can be chastised for an imaginary assault committed by a non-existent member of their group. There can never be a wholly satisfactory resolution to “he said/she said” accusations so the best thing is to avoid them in the first place. That’s why our predecessors invented chaperones. That wont fly in the 21st century, although I note there is no shortage of sour faced old maids, but we can no longer rely on their impartiality. Let the girls have their own schools and leave the chaps to study in peace. It’s the only way to be sure.

  • Runcie Balspune

    The concerning thing about this is “some other form of sexual assault”, which as far as the education establishment is concerned, could be absolutely anything. I am sure there is a legal definition but if they are willing to bypass fundamental legal rules like “innocent until proven guilty” then I doubt they’d be applying this correctly either.

    In the current climate of gender identification, how long before “sexual assault” means whatever the “victim” says it means? How would this play out for men, could they accuse a girl of “sexual assault” (e.i. flirting?) if she rejects their advances?

    This whole trope butts up against the gender “equality” madness the woke/progressives have got themselves mixed up into.

  • I suggest that the problem is the ‘woke’ courtship ritual has changed and become more complicated ,… So the answer surely is to teach it formally. (Nullius in Verba, March 7, 2019 at 7:04 am)

    No. Firstly, the answer is so not to have the PC educators who brought us the problem “teach it formally”, and secondly (if you want evidence for my ‘firstly’), observe that they blatantly already do.

    That said, I like the wit of

    trial-and-error experimentation results in errors leading to trials

    However the correctness of your

    the boys in particular don’t know how to do it

    can be debated. Statistically, you may be correct FAIK, but various regret-is-rape hoaxes are the tip of an iceberg suggesting there are girls who “don’t know how to do it”.

    (Their difficulties are just one aspect of how the intersectional must run ever so hard just to stay in the same place even from day to day, never mind such longer-term examples as Christine Blasey Ford’s old school yearbooks. Another aspect is that while it’s fine to talk about ‘boys’ v ‘girls’, try asking for an ethnic and citizenship breakdown of the ‘boys’ data. 🙂 )

  • The Pedant-General

    “Cut to him sitting with his patient-and-reasonable face on.”

    Aye there’s the rub. It’s all in the cutting. Don’t let yourself be filmed by these b*st*rds unless you are making your own recording as well. Then wait till they broadcast and sue.

  • EdMJ

    Simply speaking, a college could provide a degree for zero cost with the agreement that the student would give them 15% of their gross earnings for the next fifteen years.

    One example of this in the coding area is: https://lambdaschool.com/
    “Pay Nothing Until You Make It – No loans, no debt, and no up-front tuition. You’ll pay a percentage of income after you’re hired, but only if you’re making at least $50k/year.”

    Some related articles:

    https://qz.com/1190860/taking-a-cut-of-students-future-paychecks-has-silicon-valley-investors-funding-education/

    https://www.theatlantic.com/education/archive/2018/06/an-alternative-to-student-loan-debt/563093/

  • Nullius in Verba

    “NiV, I’ve always admired your Jesuit level sophistry and am flattered you consider one of my comments worthy of your attention.”

    Thank you! (I think.) And you’re welcome.

    “So if I were to suggest it would be better to have no murders rather than improve the procedures for dealing with murderers, you would disagree?”

    No, because I take the Harm Principle as a basis for these sorts of policies. Society can interfere with liberty to prevent murders, it can do so to prevent rapes, but it shouldn’t act to prevent consensual liaisons.

    “Chaps tend not to get other chaps sent down.”

    Really? I don’t see any reason why not.

    “No. Firstly, the answer is so not to have the PC educators who brought us the problem “teach it formally”, and secondly (if you want evidence for my ‘firstly’), observe that they blatantly already do.”

    Not that I’ve heard. They do tell people *not* to do it in the old way, but they don’t seem to teach how you’re supposed to do it now. I’m not sure even they have seriously thought about how you’re supposed to do it now. A book of regulations is not the same as a ‘how to’ guide.

  • Fraser Orr

    @EdMJ Interesting links, thanks for the info.

  • Paul Marks

    Doing my best to find meaning in the words of Louis Theroux – he COULD mean that a court of criminal law has a very high burden of proof, beyond-all-reasonable-doubt.

    But the CIVIL law has no such high bar (it operates on a balance-of-probabilities) – hence Mr “O.J.” Simpson being found civilly liable for the killing of his ex wife and her friend, even though a court of criminal law had found him NOT GUILTY.

    Of course if Mr Louis Theroux does NOT mean this – and simply means that people should be persecuted even though there is NEITHER proof against them “beyond all reasonable doubt” OR a “balance of probabilities” (the Civil Law standard) – well then he is an arse, and it is Mr Theroux who should be shunned.

  • Paul Marks (March 7, 2019 at 11:49 pm), I would agree that, alongside the obvious dangers (very obvious in today’s society), there is a common-sense point that we should be allowed to know that ‘not guilty’ is not an exact synonym of ‘innocent’. In today’s world, I would see Louis as careless at best if he speaks as he has while not also taking opportunities to warn of the dangers and distance himself from supporting them. I’ve noted above that his approach – being sympathetic to his subject during a program – may not be ideal to getting the warnings slap-bang next to the discussion, but for that very reason I’ve occasionally seen his approach lead him off-narrative (e.g. by describing something un-mixed with the virtue-signalling that other beeboids would feel complelled to lard over everything).

  • Paul Marks

    Quite so Niall – no argument from me against you on this.

  • Runcie Balspune

    “Pay Nothing Until You Make It – No loans, no debt, and no up-front tuition. You’ll pay a percentage of income after you’re hired, but only if you’re making at least $50k/year.”

    Isn’t this more or less the scheme in the UK, apart from the minimum pay figure being a bit lower?

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