Warning: Try Not to Have Sex at Stanford by KC Johnson

June 9, 2014

Slate's Emily Bazelon recently took a look at the tensions in campus sexual assault matters by looking into a the case of Leah Francis, a Stanford student who said that she was brutally raped on campus. Though Bazelon conceded due process problems, her column suggested that issues regarding campus due process are likely to get worse before they get better.


Bazelon's piece examined a particularly ugly allegation at Stanford, albeit in a one-sided manner. (Bazelon extensively, and uncritically, quoted from Michelle Dauber, the Stanford law professor who played a key role in pushing through a new procedure that weakened due process protections for students accused of sexual assault, and she neither spoke to nor obtained documents from the accused student.) Nonetheless, if the allegations are true, the accused student should have been sent to jail. (The accuser in the case does not appear to have gone to the police, for reasons unexplained by Bazelon.) Instead, the accused student was convicted by Stanford, suspended, but not expelled. When he returned to campus, Francis launched a public relations campaign in protest.


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