[FoRK] The Great Prohibition - Title IX craziness

Damien Morton dmorton at bitfurnace.com
Mon Jun 1 08:00:49 PDT 2015

I'm 50 and haven't dated a woman over 30 in 10 years.

A lot of people react with ick when they find out, but I dont care.

On Sat, May 30, 2015 at 10:00 PM, Stephen D. Williams <sdw at lig.net> wrote:

> Is even talking about it abusive?
> A 60 year old dating a 21 year old is disconcerting.  A 27 year old
> professor dating a 23 year old student, not so much.
> Can you factor out age gap ick from professor / student ick?  Are there
> different varieties of professor / student ick?
> sdw
> On 5/30/15 11:47 AM, Gregory Alan Bolcer wrote:
>> Professors dating their students is icky.
>> Greg
>> On 5/30/2015 11:19 AM, Stephen D. Williams wrote:
>>> Way overboard.  Hopefully we'll work our way back, keeping in mind the
>>> extremes that we've already visited.
>>> http://www.slate.com/blogs/the_slatest/2015/05/29/laura_kipnis_title_ix_investigation_feminism_political_correctness_controversy.html
>>>  Title IX Investigation Opened Against Female Northwestern Professor
>>>> Over Column, Tweet
>>>> Laura Kipnis during a 2014 interview.
>>>> In February, Northwestern film professor and liberal cultural critic
>>>> (and occasional Slate contributor) Laura Kipnis wrote an article for
>>>> the Chronicle of Higher Education called "Sexual Paranoia Strikes
>>>> Academe." Kipnis' piece was critical of what she called the "layers of
>>>> prohibition and sexual terror" that have inspired campus rules
>>>> prohibiting romantic relationships between professors and students.
>>>> Wrote Kipnis:
>>>>     It’s the fiction of the all-powerful professor embedded in the new
>>>> campus codes that appalls me. And the kowtowing to the
>>>> fiction—kowtowing wrapped in a vaguely feminist air of rectitude. If
>>>> this is feminism, it’s feminism hijacked by melodrama. The
>>>> melodramatic imagination’s obsession with helpless victims and
>>>> powerful predators is what’s shaping the conversation of the moment,
>>>> to the detriment of those whose interests are supposedly being
>>>> protected, namely students. The result? Students’ sense of
>>>> vulnerability is skyrocketing.
>>>> Later in the piece, she argued that students "so committed to their
>>>> own vulnerability, conditioned to imagine they have no agency, and
>>>> protected from unequal power arrangements in romantic life" will
>>>> struggle to deal with the problems and conflicts of the real world.
>>>> On Friday, Kipnis published another piece in the Chronicle, revealing
>>>> that, in a twist that's ironic on more than one level, she is now the
>>>> subject of an investigation into graduate student complaints that her
>>>> earlier column and a subsequent tweet violated Title IX, the law that
>>>> prohibits sex descrimination in education. Her piece, in addition to
>>>> pointing out the absurdity of being charged with discriminatory
>>>> behavior because of an essay, alleges an investigatory process that's
>>>> ridiculously opaque for the accused:
>>>>     I wouldn’t be informed about the substance of the complaints until
>>>> I met with the investigators. Apparently the idea was that they’d tell
>>>> me the charges, and then, while I was collecting my wits, interrogate
>>>> me about them. The term "kangaroo court" came to mind. I wrote to ask
>>>> for the charges in writing. The coordinator wrote back thanking me for
>>>> my thoughtful questions.
>>>> One of Kipnis' accusers was alluded to, though not by name and
>>>> seemingly without rancor or judgment, in Kipnis' first piece. This
>>>> accuser apparently said Kipnis' allusion to her was "retaliatory" and
>>>> believes the above-linked tweet refers to her, which Kipnis says is
>>>> not the case. The other accuser was not mentioned at all in Kipnis'
>>>> essay but is said to have brought charges "on behalf" of the
>>>> university and two individuals who were referred to anonymously in the
>>>> first piece.
>>>> Kipnis was not allowed to have an attorney present during her
>>>> interview with Title IX investigators, she writes, but she was allowed
>>>> to bring along another faculty member as a "support person" provided
>>>> that the person she brought did not speak. That support person later
>>>> discussed Kipnis' situation at a "Faculty Senate" meeting—and has
>>>> subsequently been accused of, yes, committing a Title IX violation.
>>>> Ben Mathis-Lilley edits the Slatest. Follow @Slatest on Twitter.
>>> https://chronicle.com/article/Sexual-Paranoia/190351/
>>>> "I don’t quite know how to characterize the willingness of my supposed
>>>> feminist colleagues to hand over the rights of faculty—women as well
>>>> as men—to administrators and attorneys in the name of protection from
>>>> unwanted sexual advances," he said. "I suppose the word would be
>>>> ‘zeal.’" His own view was that the existing sexual-harassment policy
>>>> already protected students from coercion and a hostile environment;
>>>> the new rules infantilized students and presumed the guilt of
>>>> professors. When I asked if I could quote him, he begged for
>>>> anonymity, fearing vilification from his colleagues.
>>>> These are things you’re not supposed to say on campuses now. But let’s
>>>> be frank. To begin with, if colleges and universities around the
>>>> country were in any way serious about policies to prevent sexual
>>>> assaults, the path is obvious: Don’t ban teacher-student romance, ban
>>>> fraternities. And if we want to limit the potential for sexual
>>>> favoritism—another rationale often proffered for the new policies—then
>>>> let’s include the institutionalized sexual favoritism of spousal
>>>> hiring, with trailing spouses getting ranks and perks based on whom
>>>> they’re sleeping with rather than CVs alone, and brought in at
>>>> salaries often dwarfing those of senior and more accomplished
>>>> colleagues who didn’t have the foresight to couple more advantageously.
>>>> Lastly: The new codes sweeping American campuses aren’t just a
>>>> striking abridgment of everyone’s freedom, they’re also intellectually
>>>> embarrassing. Sexual paranoia reigns; students are trauma cases
>>>> waiting to happen. If you wanted to produce a pacified, cowering
>>>> citizenry, this would be the method. And in that sense, we’re all the
>>>> victims.
>>> sdw
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