As a postscript to our incendiary discussion of the alleged sexual-assault crisis on America's college campuses, I thought I'd recommend this insightful and (to my read) eminently fair-minded piece from today's New York Times by Yale law professor Jed Rubenfeld. Make no mistake, I agree with Rubenfeld (as well as with women and/or those who presume to speak for women) that even one rape is unacceptable, and also that there are far too many guys, especially in scholastic sports programs and from affluent backgrounds, who feel "entitled." But naturally I tend to perk at the professor's broadside against the overkill character of today's countermeasures, and the blunderbuss-style impact such countermeasures are apt to have on all men...including the millions who'd never dream of raping a woman in the classic (violent) sense...and who'd be aghast to be informed that they had (technically) done so, under the convoluted (i.e. nonsensical) terms of said countermeasures.
Here are two passages that are central to the author's point, and also to mine:
"Now consider that one large survey showed that around 40 percent of undergraduates, both men and women, had sex while under the influence of alcohol. Are all these students rape victims? And what if both parties were under the influence? Asked this question, a Duke University dean answered, 'Assuming it is a male and female, it is the responsibility in the case of the male to gain consent.' This answer shows more ideology than logic."[No kidding! Both parties have been drinking, yet only the male is required to proceed responsibly and with caution?]
"...students need to be told clearly that if they are voluntarily under the influence (but not incapacitated), they remain responsible for their sexual choices. Moreover, sexual assault on campus should mean what it means in the outside world and in courts of law. Otherwise, the concept of sexual assault is trivialized, casting doubt on students courageous enough to report an assault."Read the piece and see what you think.