We’ve all heard the stories about political correctness ruining college education. These days, trigger warnings and safe spaces are more important than challenging students to openly express ideas. It’s a trend that shows no signs of slowing down, especially after the election of President Trump.Sadly, the culture of protecting certain classes of people can also have disastrous consequences. In one recent case, a Texas University’s vendetta against an innocent student ended in tragedy.
From the College Fix:Gay student sexually harasses straight student. Gay student reports straight student as the sexual harasser. University repeatedly violates its own rules to find straight student guilty.
Straight student kills himself days after learning his new disciplinary record could keep him out of grad school.This is the horrifying story told in a Title IX lawsuit against the University of Texas-Arlington by Wayne Klocke, the father of the student who killed himself, Thomas.
The details of the lawsuit are shocking. Instead of allowing the student a fair chance to defend himself, the University set out on a mission to ruin his life:
As reported by Ashe Schow at Watchdog.org, Thomas Klocke never had a chance of beating the charges, because he was never afforded even the minimal due process that UTA promises students.It’s all the more outrageous given what Klocke was accused of doing, with no evidence: writing a gay slur on his computer in front of the gay student and allegedly telling him to consider killing himself.
Not only was there no evidence to support the accusers claim, but evidence suggests it may have been the accuser that initiated the sexual harassment:
Klocke said his accuser made unwelcome sexual advances toward him. Klocke rejected the advances, telling his eventual accuser that he was straight. The lawsuit suggests that this rejection led the accuser to make up his story, possibly out of fear that he himself could be accused of sexual misconduct.
Despite this, the University did everything in its power to prevent the student from defending himself:The accuser went straight to an administration official with whom he was friendly, someone who was not authorized to follow up on the accuser’s allegation, Associate Vice President of Student Affairs Heather Snow.
Snow and an allied “academic integrity” official, Daniel Moore, purposely kept UTA’s Title IX coordinator in the dark about the complaint, which meant Klocke never got the hearing he was due under UTA’s rules, the lawsuit says.
The tragedy serves as a sobering reminder of how out of control our colleges have become. Because the accuser was a gay man, his word was taken without question. At the expense of the life of one of their students, University officials broke their own rules to see to his punishment.
Sadly, cases like this are becoming all too common. Male college students are increasingly unable to defend themselves from false accusations. Even when the accusations are proven to be untrue, their reputations are usually destroyed in the process.
This is just one of the more tragic side effects of our new campus culture. Instead of treating every student as an individual deserving of due process, colleges are creating protected classes with more rights than everyone else. Sometimes it’s a right not to be offended, other times it’s the right to kick someone out of school without due process. This time, sadly, it ended up costing a student his life.
[Note: This post was authored by Michael Lee. Follow him on Twitter @UAMichaelLee]