Jed Rubenfeld, Yale law professor, and husband to Tiger Mom author Amy Chua, has been placed on leave from his teaching position at Yale Law School, according to New York Magazine. Rubenfeld, who was under investigation by the university since 2018 was found by the school to have “a pattern of sexual harassment of several students,” according to the inquiry’s results. “The allegations, which spanned decades, included verbal harassment, unwanted touching, and attempted kissing, both in the classroom and at parties at Rubenfeld’s home,” New York reports. Rubenfeld denies ever harassing anyone.
In a phone call with New York, Rubenfeld cited his own writings about the “unreliability of campus Title IX” which he published as an op-ed in the New York Times in 2014. Rubenfeld emphasized the shortcomings of putting too much legal power into the hands of college professors and administrators, just before spouting facts on the high rate of campus sexual assault. In the piece, he also questions if rape is really rape at all:
Consider the illogical message many schools are sending their students about drinking and having sex: that intercourse with someone “under the influence” of alcohol is always rape. Typical is this warning on a joint Hampshire, Mount Holyoke and Smith website: “Agreement given while under the influence of alcohol or other drugs is not considered consent”; “if you have not consented to sexual intercourse, it is rape.
Incredible that a law professor found it so difficult to grasp the concept of consent. Instead of assessing the queasy juxtaposition of his views and these accusations, Rubenfeld argues to New York that his writings have made him a target for anonymous women to accuse him of assault.
But as it turns out, Rubenfeld’s accusers are not entirely anonymous. As one woman told New York, “I reported because I was sexually harassed...as Yale’s policy requires, I identified myself to him. I had to, and I did so at considerable risk given his influence in the legal community.”
Rubenfeld’s removal from teaching will last two years and at the end of that period, New York reports, Rubenfeld will be “barred from teaching ‘small group or required courses’ and “restricted in social gatherings with students.”