The University of Miami in Ohio handles Title IX pretty much like most other schools seem to. The woman is automatically believed, the man is pretty well screwed for the crime of possessing male genitals, and so on.
Unfortunately for the school, however, a federal judge is less than impressed by this.
A federal judge recently ordered the public university to let “John Nokes” back on campus, lift his punishments (save for a no-contact order) and not release his real name, as Nokes’ lawsuit against the public university continues.
Miami University may be in a mood to settle, and not just because U.S. District Judge Michael Barrett shredded its adjudication procedures for failing the most basic rules of fairness – notably, the opportunity to cross-examine “adverse witnesses.”
While questioning Nokes, two members of the hearing panel suggested that any alcohol consumption by an accuser negates that person’s consent. The court reprints a transcript portion:
MR. SCOTT: What does [mandatory student training] say about alcohol?
MR. [JOHN NOKES]: That an excess of alcohol is not — an excess of alcohol does not — you can’t give consent if you have a large amount of alcohol.
MR. SCOTT: It’s says large amount?
MR. [JOHN NOKES]: This is from my understanding, sure.
MR. SCOTT: It says alcohol. It does not say amount.
MR. [JOHN NOKES]: So with that definition — I’m honestly just asking, but that definition if everybody on this campus who takes a drink of alcohol and kisses their boyfriend or girlfriend, is that nonconsensual?
MS. VAUGHN: Potentially, yes.
That official is Susan Vaughn, who presided over the hearing and is a named defendant.
The judge rejected that argument, and for good reason. Additionally, based on the allegations, Mr. Nokes and the accuser, “Jane Roe,” were both drinking. As a result, a case could be made that Nokes was just as much a victim of rape as Roe was.
Funny that, ain’t it?
Make no mistake, drinking large quantities of alcohol makes you very open to suggestion. You really can’t consent in that state.
However, school officials imply that two adults who get a beer together and then head off for a mutually agreed upon sexual encounter are both guilty of rape. Or is it just the man who’s guilty because he’s got dangly bits?
There’s an important thing to note in all this, however. The judge has ordered Nokes to be admitted back into school with all punishments lifted (save for a no-contact order that bars him from interacting with his accuser…which I doubt he’d want to do anyway), yet the case isn’t even finished. That’s right, this is still ongoing.
I’m sorry, but that can’t be a good sign for the university.