Letter to the Editor: Don’t destroy rights in name of protectionPublished 10:01am Friday, June 21, 2013
My fellow Americans, I have a question for you. What should it take to convict someone of a crime? The Department of Education’s office of Civil Rights says that in the university setting accusations of rape or sexual assault only need a “preponderance of evidence.”
What this means is that if the panel of school faculty and students can convict a young man or male teacher simply if the accuser’s story is 50.001 percent likely to be true. And it does happen almost exclusively to men. Added to which, if the man is found to be not gulity by the panel the accuser can appeal the decision and start a whole new hearing. This is a blatant violation of our protection from Double Jeopardy.
The Department of Education’s directive, also known as the “Dear Colleague” letter, has been an instrument of nonacademic and un-American terror. Can there be any wonder why men are withdrawing from higher education in droves? We need to take rape and sexual assault seriously but no amount of safety is worth destroying our men and boys rights for. Since 9/11 it seems that we have decided that security is more important than freedom and due process.
Zachery Lorentz, Austin