Institutions and Organizations must do the right thing

My daughter is a college junior at a small college. She is flourishing in her environment and we could not be more proud. She has an enviable sense of right and wrong.

Right now she is frustrated with her college for failing to act when confronted by a sexual harassment claim by someone at the college. It was just reported the young woman and her family are suing the school and four officials. Apparently, the now former student’s harassment continued after she made her complaint with others joining in because her assailant was an athlete.

On top of this, Betsy DeVos, the Secretary of Education rescinded an Obama era requirement on colleges and universities to be more accommodating to those who file complaints. Now, more onus is placed on the victim to come forward, which will further stymie complaints.

Quite simply, institutions must stop protecting their image and do the right thing. In so doing, they will help their image by getting to the bottom of things. The Catholic Church greatly harmed themselves for decades by masking a huge problem. Penn State University failed to address a homosexual pedophile in one of their coaches after being aware of it for years.

Congress needs to do better at addressing sexual misconduct in their midst. And, our military, while doing better at addressing the tens of thousands of sexual misconduct claims, must take the added step of taking the investigation out of the chain of command or they will never reach where they need to be.

These numerous colleges and universities must do the right thing. Our daughters and sons deserve to be protected and their complaints heard. I told my daughter if something bad happens to you at the college, she should not go to the college police or town police and report it to the nearest city police. I believed this before I heard the latest news of the lawsuit.

Truth be told, small colleges are under significant financial pressures. Her college may have added to their pressures with a lawsuit which could have been avoided. Leaders must do the right thing. And, one thing they can start with is not look to leadership on this issue from the US Commander-in-chief. His reputation for sexual misconduct is renowned.

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29 thoughts on “Institutions and Organizations must do the right thing

  1. De Vos is a puppet, having no experience in the position she has accepted we cannot rely on her to make good decisions or even be expected to do other than what she is told to do. We are moving backward , how sad.

    • Holly, she is leading efforts to defund federal contributions to education saying the states should handle. The whole point of federal involvement is consistency of standards. What is happening is voucher programs will peel off students leaving a mess behind with less funding. Keith

      • That was the plan when she was appointed, having always attended private school, having no real comprehension of the public school system, I expected this and it is happening.

      • Holly, agreed. She was on “60 Minutes” last night and had a hard time with easy questions. What she did with college campus sexually abused women is a slap in the face on the #metoo movement. Keith

      • She is in step with this administration, Keith. We are slipping back and no one will stop the fall. I have hopes that the millennials and minorities and women ( I have no hope for the evangelical women who make excuses for Trumps behavior, saying they are praying for him) will get to the polls in November. Our hope lies with the young people coming of voting age.

      • Holly, no question. This advocacy and protest must turn out in votes. This is the only way to register the message that lying, demeaning, and abusing people and the environment are unacceptable traits in a leader. Keith

  2. This is sad. Truly. One has come to expect — though not to condone — such cover-ups at the large Division I schools, but in a small college where everyone knows what is going on it is beyond justification. The school’s reputation can be more carefully guarded by following up on such complaints and punishing the assailant, not by covering up only to have the cover up revealed later on. It’s inexcusable. You gave your daughter good advice. Campus police are often in the pocket of the administration and not lilkely to have the student’s best interest at heart.

    • Roger, I think it is omnipresent. Men in power think it is an aphrodisiac whether or not the chosen partner thinks it is. I am still amazed that these men done think that some of their acts are recorded. I think one of the worst stories is the English youth football coach who got away with it for decades. Keith

      • And we have had cases of previously ‘much loved’ celebrities, one in fact was quite brazen, acts being carried out on BBC premises; truth only arising after his death of natural causes. He did think he was above any law or sense of decency.

      • Roger, that was another shocking story. Here, I adored Bill Cosby and even saw him do his act live with my whole family. Then he broke our hearts. Keith

      • I can understand that Keith. An Australian multi-talented entertainer Rolf Harris pulled the same one on us. And I used to love his work, singing, painting, monologues etc, all dust now.

  3. I remember instance like that when I was in college… tragic that it is still occurring and criminal that the powers that be are still looking the other way. I haven’t seen De Vos’s interview yet but I’ve read enough about it to understand why she is often labeled Trump’s most hated cabinet member (although the competition is pretty strong).

  4. What is it, I wonder, about power or money that seems to give some people the false idea that they can take whatever they wish from whomever has what they desire? I’m glad you told her not to go to the campus police or local yokels … but I absolutely hope she never needs to anyway. Sad state of affairs, no pun intended, and not one that is likely to disappear anytime soon, with sexual assault being ignored, condoned, and swept under the rug.

    • Jill, doing what DeVos did was a step back from inching forward progress. I also think the Rolling Stone article about a fraudulent claim at University of Virginia also hurt progress. Keith

      • Agreed … DeVos is hurting education in so many ways. And yes, sometimes people do jump on the bandwagon and make false accusations. A plea for attention, I suppose. But we cannot punish all based on the actions of a few. Sometimes I feel that women’s rights have gone back about 100 years in just 14 short months. But, I remain encouraged by the #MeToo movement and how it has been responded to, for the most part.

  5. Note to Readers: My wife bumped into an old acquaintance and, as they inquired about children, my wife shared where our daughter was in school. The other person recounted reading the negative press my daughter’s college received as noted above. A negative echo bounces higher than a positive one, so this is not how the leadership wanted the college remembered. Doing the right thing is not only right, it will save your reputation. It does not take much to be taken off a prospective student’s list.

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