Biden Talks Sexual Assault, Issues New University Guidelines

Illustration for article titled Biden Talks Sexual Assault, Issues New University Guidelines

Vice President Joe Biden and Education Secretary Arne Duncan kicked off Sexual Assault Awareness Month with an appearance at the University of New Hampshire, issuing a new set of guidelines for all colleges and universities receiving federal funds.

You can read the guidelines in full here, but here's the gist:

Under the Education Department guidelines, schools informed about sexual harassment or violence must take immediate action to stop the abuse and prevent it from happening again. Regardless of whether a victim files a complaint, the school must investigate the incident, even if a criminal investigation is underway.

Schools must also have sex discrimination policies in place and an employee responsible for managing the institution's compliance with Title IX, the law that prohibits discrimination based on sex in education programs. Sexual violence is included in the definition of that discrimination. Finally, schools must make procedures for filing complaints based on Title IX violations clearly available.


These aren't new rules; they're clarifications or confirmation of existing policies — the same ones that Yale is currently being investigated for violating.

Pretty basic stuff, but also the perfect occasion, apparently, to rehearse trolling on how, rather than fight sexual assault on campus, we should be denying it exists. Here's Heather MacDonald in The National Review Online. First she compares the estimated numbers on sexual assault on campus to the numbers reported to authorities in cities — clearly not the same thing — and provides the following debunking of the "campus-rape lie": It can't exist, because otherwise all of the coddling parents of the spoiled college students would revolt. Predictably, rape is a big-government scam:

Biden has just announced more college red tape on the laughable ground that schools ignore sexual violence. In fact, virtually every campus has a robust sexual-violence bureaucracy which sits idle, waiting for the shell-shocked casualties of rape to crawl through their doors. The victims never come - because they don't exist.


What does exist, she writes, is drunk and slutty girls acquiescing to male sex demands. MacDonald's solution: "Don't drink yourself blotto. Don't get into bed with one of your fellow drunken revelers. Keep your clothes on." We'll stick with Biden.

Federal Guidelines Issued To Fight Campus Violence [LAT]
Are One In Five College Women Sexually Assaulted? [NRO]
Earlier: Title IX Suit Filed Against Yale University For Hostile Sexual Environment

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I agree with MacDonald's "Don't drink yourself blotto" suggestion, but that's just because being drunk puts you at risk for all kinds of negative/dangerous stuff—losing your keys, falling and hurting yourself, getting in trouble for breaking campus rules, etc., etc. (Unfortunately, I speak from experience.) But campus sexual assault would still happen even if no one ever got drunk. And that's the problem.