Dankprofessor’s Weblog

A weblog examining sexual politics in higher education and beyond.

The Duke case and beyond

OK, I am not leaving until tomorrow so I can’t resist sending out this post.

Mike Nifong was found guilty in the Duke U. so called rape case and is now serving 1 day in jail.  In their op ed piece, Guilty in the Duke Case, Stuart Taylor and K.C. Johnson scour former district attorney Nifong, but also in general terms scour the press which bought into Nyfong’s rape mythology. Also scoured are Duke President Richard Brodhead and Duke faculty which in almost universal terms supported  said mythology.  As the columnists state: “This shameful conduct was rooted in a broader trend toward subordination of facts and evidence to faith-based ideological posturing.  Worse, the ascendant ideology, especially in academia, is an obsession with the fantasy that oppression of minorities and women by ‘privileged’ white men remains rampant in America.  Its crude stereotyping of white men, , especially athletes, resembles old fashion racism and sexism.”

In other words, at Duke and most other American Universities the presumption is one of guilt when the person charged is a white male and the alleged victim is a female.  Do note that the Duke president Richard Brodhead took many punitive actions against members of the Lacrosse team.  Given that Brodhead did not violate any academic norms regarding his unbecoming conduct, he remains in good standing.  Such is consistent  with my prior assertions that professors charged with sexual harassment are de facto presumed guilty and treated as  such.  Such is also very consistent with what has become axiomatic among too many academics that consensual student-prof relationships are never consensual and always involve a predatory professor and a female victim even when the so-called victim protests that she is not a victim.  If she be a victim, said victimhood has been perpetrated by the campus powers that be  who have taken away her right to consent.

Also, let us not forget that the prime mover other than Nifong was the alleged victim.  She has not been charged with making a false accusation or charged with any other charge.  It would appear to me that the civil authorities are following the academic model here which is when  a charge made by a female student is dropped  because it is found to have no merit, it is generally simply forgotten by campus authorities, held to be too trivial to initiate  any formal proceedings.  However, if the charged male prof had spoken out criticizing the one who had charged him, said prof would face the probability of being charged with sexual harassment for speaking out. So much for academic freedom, for academic justice.

And for a review of the new book on the Duke case by Taylor and Johnson, see Abigail Thernstrom’s review on the wsj opinion blog.

I know at least one reader of this blog who might regard me as being a hypocrite since I have de facto assumed Larry Craig’s guilt.  I am not going to review the whole Craig scenario except to state that it was Craig who facilitated a presumption of guilt when he pled guilty to a lesser charge.  His attempt to  have that guilty plea vetoed will not change the fact that he cannot undo the power of his original plea. The 13th juror will continue to hold him guilty as charged.

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September 8, 2007 - Posted by | Duke University, sexual politics, student professor dating

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