'FIRE Is Sticking Up for Penises Everywhere'


In the September issue of Philadelphia magazine, Sandy Hingston explores "The New Rules of College Sex," formulated in response to the dual threats of Title IX complaints and loss of federal funding. Under those rules, sexual assault is defined as "any intentional sexual touching, however slight, with any object, by a man or a woman upon a man or a woman, without consent." The initiator (typically a man) must obtain explicit consent (preferably in writing?) for each step in a sexual excounter, and if the other person (typically a woman) has been drinking, all bets are off, since intoxication may render her incapable of consent. Hingston notes that Vice President Joe Biden's recent claim that college campuses face an epidemic of sexual assault, which is contradicted by data on reported cases, hinges on portraying women as victims when they do not see themselves that way. She objects to a view of rape that threatens to redefine the vast majority of college sex as a crime:

"If drunken hookups are defined as sexual assaults," a female colleague says, remembering her college days, "then I've been sexually assaulted 177 times."…

I have a college-age daughter. I tell Sokolow [a Title IX consultant] that if she got drunk and had sex with someone, I'd jolly well expect her to take responsibility. He isn't buying it: "She should have the right to strip naked and run through the streets and be unmolested. She didn't make that happen; the molester did."…

When I was in college, back in the heady '70s—when we battled hard for the Equal Rights Amendment, when Ms. magazine was still new—I and the women I knew got drunk a lot, and woke up in bed with guys we didn't always like or know. They never asked us, "Can I put my finger inside you?" We never accused them of sexual assault. We were, all of us, learning about limits and needs and wants. There were a lot of teachable moments along the way.

Those days are gone. I guess Joe Biden would rather talk about epidemics of sexual assault than a dearth of common sense.

Hingston notes that loose definitions of sexual assault are especially troubling in light of weak procedural protections for students facing disciplinary hearings, who typically do not have a right to representation. Under pressure from the Education Department's Office of Civil Rights (OCR), colleges are lowering the standard of proof in such cases to "a preponderance of the evidence" (a probability of guilt greater than 50 percent), preventing defendants from confronting their accusers, and allowing the appeal of acquittals. The upshot is that one of those "drunken hookups" can easily ruin a man's academic career (since other schools are understandably reluctant to admit students expelled for sexual assault) if his sexual partner or a university official with knowledge of the encounter files a complaint. Here is how the Title IX consultant interviewed by Hingston responds to criticism of this situation by the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education: "FIRE is sticking up for penises everywhere."

More on the OCR's campaign against due process here and here. In a classic Reason story from 1990, Stephanie Gutmann warned about the consequences of redefining sexual assault. 

NEXT: A Conversation with Author Vernor Vinge

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  1. The Islamic answer was to put all women in burkas. The American answer is to register all men as sex offenders.

    Both answers are equally moronic.

    1. They only put Muslim women in buraks. They assume the rest are whores and treat them as such.

      1. Stone them to death?

      2. Actually most Muslims think that all men are ravenous sexual monsters and women have to be shielded from their gaze and clearly marked as the property of another man, who will kill them is they touch her. So the leftist feminists and the Muslims aren't that far apart.

    2. The obvious answer here is to put all men in burkas.

      1. So FIRE is "Sticking Up for Penises Everywhere" because all those limp noodles are too impotent to stick up for themselves?

        Sometimes these bad puns just write themselves.

    3. Mr. Sullum, I'm still waiting on that list of countries that have legalized pot, cocaine, or heroine. Please let us know!

      1. Planning a vacation?

      2. As far as I know, heroine has always been legal. Heroin, on the other hand...

  2. "intentional sexual touching...without consent"

    Only one word in the whole definition that isn't open to interpretation.

      1. No way, you can sexually harass by touching on the shoulder. It's gotta be "touching," though it pains me to imagine that they could probably twist that one around too.

        1. Dollars to donuts getting an inch away from a girl's hair or tickling her with a feather duster is considered "touching" by OCR.

  3. "If drunken hookups are defined as sexual assaults," a female colleague says, remembering her college days, "then I've been sexually assaulted 177 times."...

    1. And every time I played Rugby.

    2. If a female has 177 one-nighters she's damaged goods.
      But if a dude does, man he's a stud!

      1. 177? Sounds pretty slutty to me.

        1. What if they're not 177 unique hookups? Maybe she was going steady.

          1. I thought about that before commenting, but I don't think most women describe a steady relationship as "177 hookups." Slut.

            1. "Baby, every night with you is like a one-night stand. Rowr."

              1. I think not.

                What's the difference between a slut and a whore? I mean the derogatory epithet "whore", not whore in the technical "Taking direct payment for sex" sense.

                1. I think that the whore is in it for the money, even if the remuneration is not direct. The slut is all about giving it away to anybody.

                  As such, a slut is really acting like a man would if he had the option. I may not wanted to sex up on a girl who has had 177 partners, but I'm not going to start calling them names.

                  1. "I may not wanted to sex up on a girl who has had 177 partners, but I'm not going to start calling them names."

                    I would call her heaven or sugar or a dream-come-true.

                    1. That's what your doctor or pharmacist would call it.

                2. Wasn't there a joke that went something like "a slut will sleep with anyone, and a whore will sleep with anyone except you?

                3. This is not strictly relevant, but a slut fucks everybody, and a bitch fucks everybody but you.

            2. ...but I don't think most women describe a steady relationship as "177 hookups."

              Get a load of the phrasing police over here.

              1. Shut up, bitch.

      2. A hook-up doesn't have to mean sex, does it?

        I think she's talking about making out. If you don't ask, "now can I put my hand here? Now can I move it here?" it can be called "assault" at some schools.

        1. I need a place to put my cigar.

        2. In the 90s-00s parlance, it's not a hookup if there's no sex. At least that was the definition back when I was on the hookup scene.

          1. This was true, but sadly is no longer. I had way too many people told me they "hooked up" where I assumed it meant fucking but apparently did not.

            1. What a bunch of frauds.

              I'm totally calling them out for it on Wednesday.

          2. There's an entire generation of girls that think oral is not sex. Which is fine, by me.

    3. She didn't say 177 different guys. I was drunk damn near every time I got laid in college. I'm guessing I was assaulted about 75 times but it was the same 5 or 6 girls who kept doing it.

      1. You're a guy.
        Women can easily hookup with a different dude every time unless they're like deformed or have morals.

        1. Absolutely true.

        2. "unless they're like deformed or have morals"

          you're being redundant


  5. "She should have the right to strip naked and run through the streets ...

    Yes, please.

    1. It depends on what she looks like.

      1. Beggers can't be choosers man. Surely some would be happy no matter what.

        1. That would be incredibly cool even if she wasn't good looking, just for the sheer defiance of authority and convention.

          1. and legal in oregon

      2. No one is making you keep your eyes open.

  6. These are ridiculous rules, but they're not ridiculous rules anyone is interested in enforcing. The college adjudication process for sexual assault, far from existing to ruin mens' academic careers, actually functions to keep sexual assault dealt with internally, away from courts and bad publicity. I agree that sexual assault is not that common on college campuses, but it's a great deal more common than the crime statistics colleges report would suggest.
    My school had this sort of ridiculous definition. At the time it reported almost no sexual assault, a feat accomplished by immunizing nearly everyone from reporting requirements and handling things internally. (As it also did as much as possible for other crimes.) This is the story of sexual assault on college campuses.

    1. That is not very reassuring Emily. The fact that the rules are rarely enforced just means they are free to enforce them on whomever they don't like.

      1. Everything about the situation is broken. But this post implies a direct line between these stupid policies and droves of men having their academic careers ruined for consensual sex, and we haven't seen that and are not going to see that.

        1. You are right. Young people are going to drink and fuck like minks. That is what they rule. No amount of ugly feminist lecturing is going to stop them. What is sad is that even a small number of people will have their lives unfairly ruined over this.

        2. This is just another tool to be used to persecute dissenters from whatever dogma the university may support. A false accusation can and will be used to beat down and demoralize anyone.

          1. +1

            And when you can intimidate dissenters, you usually manage to avoid the possibility of bad publicity, because you don't ever need to persecute them.

        3. "There's no way to rule innocent men. The only power government (or a college) has is the power to crack down on criminals. When there aren't enough criminals, one makes them. One declares so many things to be a crime that it becomes impossible for men to live without breaking laws."
          Atlas Shrugged

        4. I don't care if there's one.

        5. we haven't seen that and are not going to see that.

          What do you mean we? I saw it way back last century when I was going to college. A friend of mine came damned closed to expulsion. The witnesses that cleared him were other women with whom he had been intimate.

          1. And I saw women who were sexually assaulted and/or physically threatened whose cases never even made it into our crime stats much less resulted in academic (or, ha ha ha, legal) consequences for the men who did it. These things are both happening at the same time because schools are handling something that should be left to the courts. But your "I saw a guy who this ALMOST happened to" is less than convincing that this is going to happen on any significant scale. It's still unjust. But this narrative is wrong.

            1. Emily is spot on. This is more about indemnifying the schools and smothering crime stats than feminist ideology.

              Get rid of in loco parentis for legal adults.

              1. feminist ideology

                Blaming others for your own poor choices. Seems like feminist ideology is still in play.

                1. That's liberalism, not feminism. The venn diagram is not a perfect circle yet.

              2. Get rid of in loco parentis for legal adults.

                +1. I will never understand this.

              3. Like they did at Duke University?

                (There's no feminist - of whatever sex - who won't lie about rape.)

              4. But the whole Biden-esque theory rests on the belief that females, of any age, are like children - unable to legally consent to anything.

            2. Fair enough that anecdotal evidence is, well, anecdotal. But as far as happening on any significant scale, ONE time is too many. Our legal system (where an assault like this should be tried) is designed to protect the innocent; unfortunately sometimes this means the guilty go unpunished.

              But to lump "Geez, I shouldn't have slept with that guy,that was not the best choice" in with "Holy shit, he held a knife to my throat, held me down and had his way with me" is disgusting an insult to real victims. You're not doing your cause any good making everyone's encounters as romantic as a shuttle launch.

              1. But to lump "Geez, I shouldn't have slept with that guy,that was not the best choice he said he would call me, but never has and bragged about his conquest to his friends. That bastard needs a little payback."

            3. What kept these women from calling the police? Seriously.

              Schools may try to "handle" something, but there are laws about rape, you know.

              1. A campus culture of not calling the police. The same thing that kept a woman I knew (different college) from calling the police when her frosh-assigned roommate tried to poison her. Or my friend from calling the police when his frosh-assigned roommate was a drug dealer. etc. etc. etc. Yes, we should have called the police more.

                1. It seems that a better solution would be to teach adults to act like adults. Who cares about the campus culture?

                  That kind of insecurity gets people killed. See University of Idaho...

                  1. This is also part of my platform for How To Make Colleges Better. But a big part of why we don't see this is that colleges actively discourage it. They should stop.

                    1. Colleges are large, money-driving institutions operated by and staffed with self-serving people. That's to be expected. Only the silly form of liberalism teaches that people metamorphose into angels when they enter government or the academy.

                    2. oops meant "money-driven"

                    3. You have a "platform"?

                    4. You have a "platform"?

                      It has anti-grav propulsion and fires Rape Repellant missiles.

                    5. Hell yes I have a platform. I didn't say it was a popular one.

                2. A campus culture of not calling the police.

                  Too fucking bad. It's called personal responsibility, and it's one of the lessons that people get regardless of college attendance.

                  1. "I couldn't help that I got raped. Where I was, we just didn't call the cops."

                    Rural Montana
                    South-Central Los Angeles

                    Seriously, what culture WANTS to call the cops. Got to learn to decide for yourself.

                3. I'll say!

                  "You can't report every little poisoning - you'll make the school look bad!"

                4. Calling the cops on people is a good way for the cops to search your dorm room and find your illegal stash. Or... in the case of being attacked by a female, its a good way to get yourself arrested if you are male.

    2. I think well over half of all sex should be handled internally.

    3. These are ridiculous rules, but they're not ridiculous rules anyone is interested in enforcing ... far from existing to ruin mens' academic careers

      Great. Another comedian.

    4. "These are ridiculous rules, but they're not ridiculous rules anyone is interested in enforcing."

      Then why have them? If a rule is not going to be enforced, what is the rule's purpose? Is it just to have a covenient cudgel to wielded on an ad hoc basis against those the admin does not like? Law and order is all well and good but it cannot be done capriciously.

      1. They're bad rules. When we adopted similar ones on my campus I loudly said they were bad rules. But when you talk about bad rules, you should mention that they're bad largely unenforced rules.

        1. Good point. But I think this article is just saying the same thing. That these rules could be dangerous if they were enforced.

          1. "That these rules could be dangerous if they were enforced."

            Uh if schools dont comply with this new regulation then they will lose federal funding. So schools are going to be more than willing to embrace this new feminist/anti male policy, in fact it has already happened.


            Caleb Warner was expelled from school and banned from campus for two years after a female falsely accused him of rape. The University (thanks to this new "proponderance of evidence" policy) found him guilty, YET the police found him innocent and are even looking for his false accuser to arrest her for filing a false report.

            Yes this is going to be enforced at every university and men should actually start speaking up instead of doing nothing, like they typically do when it comes to their rights.

          2. If?
            Bad, dangerous if they were enforced rules are like loaded pistols laying around in a bar room. As the night wears on, I assure you, they will get used.

        2. There is no guarantee of this going forward or that some universities won't abuse such policies (especially if there's publicity), and it is a great deal less respectful of the presumption of innocence than any system with such far-reaching consequences should be.

          These rules confer a great deal of arbitrary power on people who have many incentives not to use it fairly. I understand why it's around, but it's not a comforting justification.

        3. The qualifier "largely" breaks your argument. Each case represents an individual being accused. It does not matter to that individual if these rules were not being enforced on someone else if they are being enforced on him.

    5. These are ridiculous rules, but they're not ridiculous rules anyone is interested in enforcing.

      People don't create rules if there is no interest in enforcing them.

      These rules will be enforced, however occassionally, sporadically, inconsistently, and irrationally.

      1. And the officious little campus pecksniffian Maralards and Neidermeirs are just the ones to enforce them.

      2. Exactly. Rules exist because those who make them want the OPTION to enforce them when it gives them some advantage.

    6. These are ridiculous rules, but they're not ridiculous rules anyone is interested in enforcing.

      The Obama administration seems damned intent on enforcing them. Next step is to threaten schools with low ratios of expulsions to complaints with losing federal funds, etc.

    7. This is the story of sexual assault on college campuses.

      1. Um, how did that submit?

        Let me try that again.

        This is the story of sexual assault on college campuses.

        It's every college's dirty little secret.

  7. If the UN can define genocide, not as the extermination of a genetically related group of individuals, but as eliminating a culture or a language, then why not define sexual assault in an ambiguous manner which is contrary to any normal person's understanding of what sexual assault is? More work for underemployed grievance lawyers. More clubs to use to beat down men and further feminize society.

    1. Good point. By the UN's definition of genocide, the creation of public schools in America was an act of genocide against immigrants from Eastern and Southern Europe.

  8. Drunk means yes.

    1. At Yale isn't it

      Drunk means yes no means anal?

      I hear the fratboys up there like many fratboys love the sodomy.

      1. * "No means yes, yes means anal." ~ Oscar Wilde

      2. Somebody tell Sinead.

      3. The version I heard was "No means Yes, Yes means Anal."

        And people who go to Yale are smart?

        1. I think the Yale incident was a pretty straightforward case of activism via satire.

  9. I had 3 drinks one night this summer and ended up in bed with a man I didn't plan on ending up in bed with. That wasn't sexual assault; it was just a lapse of judgement.

    1. Yeah well if you're a college student and regret your lapse.....feel free to have your "partner" run off campus. I know a real "go-getter" of an attorney who will help you out!

    2. Just 3 drinks?

      Where were you when I was in college?

  10. How about this as a solution?

    Absolutely no role for universities in adjudicating accusations of criminal conduct of any kind.

    If there's a sexual assault on a campus, the municipal police should deal with it and no one else.

    Problem solved.

    Having a university adjudicate a claim of sexual assault is as stupid as having the landlord of an apartment building where an alleged rape take place adjudicate it.

    A university is a service provider and a landlord and nothing else. It's not a town and shouldn't conduct itself as a town.

    1. But that would prevent them from running kangaroo courts and ruining people's lives and making feminists feel good about themselves. And who wants that?

      The whole issue is pretty much as insane as it gets. If some guy really is guilty of rape, I would hope being expelled or sent to sensitivity training would be the least of his problems. And if he is innocent, nothing should happen to him.

      The whole thing is just an end run around that whole Bill of Rights and Due Process thingy.

      1. So this is an example of the being neither half full or half empty...the problem is the cup itself.

        1. So this is an example of the CUP being neither half full or half empty...the problem is the cup itself.

      2. Hmm. I don't think a privately adjudicated, relatively secret campus court will ruin one's life nearly as much as criminal accusations leading to trial/lawsuit/jail/etc.

        We can agree that the lines are far too blurred for clarity's sake, thanks to both sides - feminists who say all non-sober, questionable contact is assault and claim yes can equal no if the woman changes her mind after the fact -- and the creeps who intentionally use or cause various forms of incapacitation to take advantage of people against their free will. A girl being passed out drunk on the couch does not give an entire fraternity the right to sleep with her, no matter how much she "should have exercised better judgement", and I fully believe any person who would take advantage of a completely incapacitated person is a rapist and should be punished as such. Same for anyone using any physical violence to get what they want against the consent of the other person.

        Now if two partially incapacitated drunk people hook up and one of them later decides that was a bad idea, they still can't retroactively claim it was rape. The problem is that it's a lot of "he said, she said" - but I think the above rules are fairly clear: taking advantage of total incapacitation or using violence = rape (both without consent); a situation with maybe partial incapacitation and mixed messages = not rape, unless one person clearly withdraws consent. Nobody is a mind reader, so one will generally operate off instincts and assumptions in such situations, and if you guess wrong, you shouldn't be punished because you aren't telepathic.

    2. The interesting thing is that because the university is a service provider the there is going to be a natural limit on these types of disciplinary hearings. We want to show we're tough on sexual assault but not have too many or we'll get a reputation as a school where rapes are a constant occurance.

      1. ...unless, of course, we find out that a disproportionate number of rapists come from families that make large donations to universities. Then we will cultivate that reputation.

      2. I would expect that DOE-OCR is going to start getting tough with universities with whose conviction-to-complaint ratio is lower than expected.

    3. Then a lot of the professors would not have any cool committees to sit on where they can enforce social justice.

    4. Yes. This.

      This has come up at my school with physical threats and physical assault (including of staff!) as well. The school tut-tuts, the school suspends or expels, the school gets involved in what are criminal matters. They encourage students to not think about how they have actual legal rights and responsibilities.

    5. Technically Title IX doesn't deal with criminal matters, but rather matters of discrimination (which courts have interpreted to include standing idly by while sexual harrassment and presumably sexual assault takes place), so your rule wouldn't affect this issue.

      1. It would to the extent that, if I don't have my own kangaroo court system in place for the feds to second guess, in the absence of criminal convictions by state courts (or, hell, at least a civil court judgment of some kind) the universities could assert that there were no sexual assaults on their campuses.

        Because that would be - you know - true.

        1. They could assert whatever they want; if they have no process for complaints to be filed, they can't back that up (and DOE would probably consider that in itself a Title IX violation). And if they do have a process for complaints, DOE can contend that a certain number should result in disciplinary action.

  11. I think that "asking at every step" rule will accomplish the anti-sex crowd's goals splendidly as it is pretty much the least sexy thing imaginable and should effectively kill all unapproved desires on contact.

    1. Which is why no one will do it and this rule makes every man a criminal and at the whim of any woman he sleeps with. Under this rule, any time two people have sex, the women will be able to make a successful claim of sexual assault if she chooses to, which is probably the point of it for the people who are pushing it.

      1. A lovely side effect of idiotic rules like this is how they encourage distrust between the sexes. If a dude had a tendency to think that all women are devious and not to be trusted or whatever, this might be the push he needed to become a real live misogynist! And wouldn't the feminists love that little confirmation.

        1. Yes it would Dagny. It is the same way that fucking men in family court makes men not want to get married or assume any responsibility for a family. Feminists screw women worse than they screw men.

          1. "Feminists screw women"

            Pictures or it didn't happen.

    2. What are the "steps"?

      1. She's got a gold tooth
        You know she's hardcore
        She'll show you a good time
        And then she'll show you the door

        Those are Dagny's steps, bitch.

        1. This is really the last place someone looking to improve their lovemaking should turn for advice. Between STEVE SMITH and basically everything about you, they could get some very wrong ideas about the steps.

          1. I have exactly one "move." I run up to every women I see and scream "Can I put my finger inside you?" right in her face. I'm not saying it has a high success rate, but it has lead to some crazy nights of pig-grunting supersex.

            1. Oh lord. Why does thi make me think of that lame 6th grade joke? "That's not my bellybutton. That's not my finger".

              1. It was Gomer Pyle, and he said "Surprise, surprise, surprise."

    3. So, when you screamed yes a few minutes ago, was that permission for me to ejaculate without fear of punishment, or were you actually praying instead of just saying "yes, GOD" over and over again?

    4. Not if she's made to beg for it.

    5. I think that "asking at every step" rule will accomplish the anti-sex crowd's goals splendidly as it is pretty much the least sexy thing imaginable and should effectively kill all unapproved desires on contact.

      Meh, not very likely. Pregnancy and STDs should be effective deterrents for promiscuity, but they have little effect on the average 18yo (especially males).

      Though it will be funny to hear college girls complain about how difficult it is to get college guys to fuck them (because of TEH PRON of course).

  12. Orthodox Jews don't shake hands with members of the opposite sex, but to avoid rudeness, they make an exception if they other person extends his hand first. By the new definition of sexual assault, you could get in trouble if a women forgets herself after kiddish, extends her hand to you, and you shake it.

    1. Hmmm, maybe a little civil disobedience could fight this policy. Get 20 students together, have them all take one shot of alcohol each, and then have them all shake hands. The resulting 190 sexual assault complaints could clog up the university courts enough to get them to repeal the regulation.

  13. Obviously we haven't matured enough as a culture to have men and women coexist in a higher education environment. Ladies, back to the kitchen until men evolve past turning all of you into victims.

    1. Ladies can't be restricted to just the kitchen. Sooner or later they'll have to go out and get fixins for sammichs.

      1. Like any of the newer generations are skilled enough to bother locking in the kitchen...

  14. The whole "drunk" rule is based on a false theory of consent, by the way.

    If someone is drunk to the point of unconsciousness and has no awareness of the fact that they are being violated, that's pretty obviously rape.

    But if someone is drunk but conscious and simply acting irresponsibly, that uninhibited and irresponsible person is the real them and they definitely have consented.

    The sober, calculating, inhibited person is a social mask or construct and, like all lies of that sort, false.

    In fact, the entire reason people drink in the first place is to set that personality aside and enjoy a few hours as their true selves.

    If you got drunk (but not passed out) and fucked somebody in college, that was the true you doing it. The morning-after regret was the lie.

    1. Under this theory, a woman who gets drunk cannot consent to having sex. But she still would be liable for first degree murder if she decided to shoot someone. Being drunk does not vitiate free will in any other legal context. But feminists would have us believe that women are so weak and fragile in the bedroom it does here.

      Bullshit. This is nothing but a raw power grab. Feminists want women to have life and death control over any man they sleep with, period.

    2. The olde rule for intoxication as an excuse was that it generally wasn't.

      You get your own stupid self drunk, so you're responsible for your stupid drunk self does. The few cases where intoxication invalidated consent (generally in contract law) involved cases where the punch was spiked, so to speak.

        1. Is a "+1 R C Dean" a reward or a punishment?

      1. I think it was Aristotle that said people who committed crimes while intoxicated deserved a punishment even harsher than normal insofar as they had delibrately done something that impaired or removed the rational thought process that normally would have prevented the crime in the first place.

    3. It's different if you're high though. Drugs make you crazy. I know cause I saw it in a movie.

    4. I subscribe to this theory of personality as well. The fact that most people tell me I am more relaxed, more personable, and more sexually attractive after I've had a few drinks is only incidental.

      Actually, I do have a quibble about the real drunk you versus the false social construct you. I believe the decision not to do something in spite of a base or root desire to is a valid part of your personality.

      1. Ah - OK, I can see that.

        I suppose I would say that you can't deny that your drunk self is you, or make it the responsibility of others to cater to your vision of the perfect sober you.

        I would like to be able to work out every day instead of surrendering to my "base or root desire" to be a lazy sack of shit - but the people who hang out with me when I "should" be exercising instead aren't harming me in any way. It's not their job to keep track of my aspirational self when I'm hanging out being my base or root self. They are 100% morally entitled to regard the base or root self their encounter as the authentic, "consenting" me.

        1. I had the same issue. I'd say that everyone wears a different mask when they interact with friends, significant others, parents, elders, kids, colleagues, etc. (it's a wonder most people can be well-adjusted in a variety of settings, really). They're all equally valid, though, and products of your own reasoned choices.

          Plus, how many people drink to alter the choices they make (to whatever: usually just to be more friendly-stupid)?

          1. When I was in college guys DID drink to alter their the female arena. We (yes me too until i learned how to get women without it) drank to make sure we had the "courage" to approach, hit on, close the deal, etc. on a night out...This was the origination of the PreParty, to be prepared for when you hit the door at the club.

            Per party too much and your asshole friend pukes on the bouncers shoes and you have to lay out a bouncer then run three blocks, wait two hours, sneak to your car and go home. but I digres.

        2. I see what you are getting at. I 100% agree that you are responsible for everything you do while in an altered state of mind. I have done a few things drunk where the next day I had a hard time figuring out what the hell I was thinking, but I fully accept responsibility for doing them.

          Also, you don't need to work out every day. If you lift weights 3 in earnest times a week you'll find yourself in awesome shape quickly.

    5. But if someone is drunk but conscious and simply acting irresponsibly, that uninhibited and irresponsible person is the real them and they definitely have consented.

      The sober, calculating, inhibited person is a social mask or construct and, like all lies of that sort, false.

      There is no such thing as a "real" self; all of us are just a sequence of collections of memories and matter that happen to exist at a given time. I have a hard time believing that a hardcore Baptist who's never been intoxicated has never been his or her "real self".

      People drink because inhibitions are unpleasant to deal with, so you feel better without them. Nothing so philosophical as you propose.

      1. For the purposes of this discussion, this is a distinction without a difference.

        If there is no such thing as a "real" self, then the sober self can't be the real self either.

        That would also make a hash of the idea that waking drunkenness negates consent.

        I have a hard time believing that a hardcore Baptist who's never been intoxicated has never been his or her "real self".


        Freud would have had no problem with that conclusion.

        Nietzsche would have had no problem with it either.

        People drink because inhibitions are unpleasant to deal with, so you feel better without them.

        This contradicts the rest of your post, at least grammatically.

        For "you" to feel better without "inhibitions", "you" would have to be something distinct from and apart from those inhibitions. So you're not actually proposing something different from me here - you're restating the same point and agreeing with it: "You" are what's left behind when the "inhibitions" aren't there.

        1. If there is no such thing as a "real" self, then the sober self can't be the real self either.

          Bingo! I don't think any self is any more real than any other self, even assuming "self" is a meaningful concept, which I would dispute. I'm just saying that, given that there is such a thing as a "real" self, it's hard to believe that the "real" self is one that never actually exists in the real world, regardless of what Freud or Nietzche or Descartes or whoever says.

          This contradicts the rest of your post, at least grammatically.

          Hey, I'm as trapped by the illusion of continuous self as anyone else. "You" is just a bookkeeping convenience representing a momentary collection of memories and matter. You know what I'm saying.

      2. It occurs to me that given some of your religiomoralizing sensibilities that perhaps you're hung up on the concept of intoxication here.

        Maybe I could make the point about the social self being false a little more clear if I used a non-alcohol-related example:

        When I am alone in an elevator, I will hum to myself and make silly noises as the elevator goes up or down.

        I will not do this if there are other people in the elevator with me.

        Similarly, if I am in the car alone, I will loudly sing along to atrocious 70's pop songs. If someone else is in the car with me, I will not do this.

        To me, the person who makes silly noises and scream-sings Helen Reddy songs is the "real" me. The person who doesn't do those things because someone else is looking is a put-on. A deception.

        I think the drunk / sober distinction is very similar to this. When someone says, "I would never have done that if I wasn't drunk," what they usually mean is "When I'm calculating how I want to appear, I wouldn't allow myself to be seen doing that."

        It's not a perfect analysis, because as Jon Schaffer's Right Hand points out, sometimes the calculation you're making represents a sincere reflection of who you really are. But I think that on balance, "drunk" you is likely to be closer to the "real" you, in the same way that "alone in the elevator" you is likely closer to the real you.

        1. Er, I'm an agnostic, so "religiomoralizing" isn't really my thing. I do find intoxicating oneself to be a foolish and meaningless activity engaged in by piteous people who don't want to deal with the burden of reality, but I don't have a moral problem with it.

          In any case, you and I and all civilized people are inhibited far more fundamentally in that we don't murder or steal to get what we want. And those inhibitions grew into our "self" in the same way the inhibition about singing in the elevator did.

          The uninhibited human self, if such is even a meaningful concept, would be a truly hideous thing.

  15. in my college days, I was "sexually assaulted" (using the loose definitions above) by women more than I "assaulted" them. Perhaps it was my sensitive face. God, I miss college (minus the poverty and the classes).

    1. sensitive face

      Is it covered with tentacular tactile organs that are ribbed and wiggle for her pleasure?

      1. exactly.

      2. Cthulu Fthuck'n!

  16. Bless you FIRE, you're doing God's work. Fight the radical extremist homos everywhere they are.

    1. What the fuck does this have to do with "radical extremist homos", whatever those are?

      1. He's talking about the goatse man, the most extremely radical homo of all. And don't worry your pretty little head what it has to do with anything.

        1. Why would anyone want to fight goatse man? He gave us one of greatest gifts the internet has ever given us: linking people to his anus picture without them expecting it.

  17. "Under pressure from the Education Department's Office of Civil Rights (OCR),..."

    That's a delightfully Orwellian name for that department. In most cases, "civil rights" means that the accused rights are the ones that must be protected, not that the accuser must get some positive result. What matters here is being seen as taking rape "seriously" not trying to see justice being done,

  18. "Under those rules, sexual assault is defined as "any intentional sexual touching, however slight, with any object, by a man or a woman upon a man or a woman, without consent."

    So the pretty twenty-something female coworker who kept sitting next to me in meetings and work related social events and brushing up against me was sexually assaulting me? Good to know.

    1. In the dark old days, this might have led to a pleasant, mutually rewarding relationship. Thank goodness we have the federal government to instruct us that the proper progression is denunciation, explusion, incarceration and litigation.

  19. Here's something you'll never hear a guy say; "Stop sucking my dick or I will call the police."
    -George Carlin

    1. I said just that to a guy demonstrating a vacuum cleaner he was trying to sell me.

    2. Yet I can easily imagine; "Stop sucking my dick, SugarFree, or I will call the police."

  20. "Can I put my finger inside you?"

    Now we're getting somewhere!

    1. "How about this curtain rod?"

    2. Trim your nails first!

      1. Me too?

  21. You're making this too easy Sullum.

  22. I don't know about you guys, but my penis sticks up for itself.




    1. It got up to 100 degrees today!

      That's pretty good for someone my age!

  23. Under those rules, sexual assault is defined as "any intentional sexual touching, however slight, with any object, by a man or a woman upon a man or a woman, without consent."

    Good guy: "Miss, miss, you dropped this book"
    Taps girl on shoulder.
    Girl: "Rapist! You touched me in a sexual manner!"
    Good guy: "What? Miss, all I did was to tap you in the shoulder!"
    Girl: "Of course, but why did you do it?"
    Good guy: "To have your attention, of course. I needed you to look at me to show you the book you dropped."
    Girl: "Ah-ha! You see? You touched me because you wanted my attention! You touched me for your own selfish reasons! Your own sexual perversions!"
    Good guy: "Wait a second! How can you conclude such a thing from a simple tap in the shoulder, besides the obvious twisting of my words?"
    Girl: "Because all men want one thing from women, you pervert!"
    Good guy: "Oh, well then, here's your book, you twisted cow! This is the last time I do something nice for a woman in this campus!"
    Girl: "See? See? How men always treat women? With wanton aggression!"
    Good guy: "Wanton? But YOU started this!"
    Girl: "Oh! So I had it coming now! The refuge of all rapists!"
    Good guy: "Oh, God. I'm out of here."

    And I wrote that - myself!

    1. You omitted any explanation of what he used to tap the girl on the shoulder with, exploiter!

      1. Well, judging by her reaction I'd say it was a giant black dildo attached to a reciprocating saw, covered in blood with a note taped to the tip that says "I'm going to rape you".

        1. I love this place so much.

    2. Plagiarist!

      This exact scenario was used in my last sexual harassment training seminar.

      I feel so violated!

      1. that makes you a sad sexual harassment panda

        1. I plead "No Contest" your Dunphyness.

    3. Guy: "Miss, miss, you dropped this book"

      Girl (after turning around): "Why are you tapping me on my shoulder with your penis?"

      1. "Whore! You touched my penis! I bet you don't even know my name!"

      2. I ain't gay, but if some dude could tap me on the shoulder with his penis while I'm walking down the hall and he could do so while just standing behind me?

        I'd be IMPRESSED more than I'd be disgusted!

  24. Threadjack but tangentially related to the general subject of college insanity.

    This is a great article on how gasp the market is actually teaching great books and canonical teaching and there isn't much of a market for queering the Alamo and such crap.

    1. This past academic year, for example, a Bowdoin College student interested in American history courses could have taken "Black Women in Atlantic New Orleans," "Women in American History, 1600?1900," or "Lawn Boy Meets Valley Girl: Gender and the Suburbs," but if he wanted a course in American political history, the colonial and revolutionary periods, or the Civil War, he would have been out of luck.

      I took the minimum number of humanities classes while I was busy getting my degree in a real subject. The history classes I took were at least real, though - stuff like the history of technology in Western civilization and the history of England. Good thing I didn't go to Bowdoin, I guess.

      1. Me too. But I was an undergrad 20 years ago. I didn't realize things had gotten that bad. What a waste of money. But that is why so many young people are so stupid an uninformed about basic history. Many of my neighbors, who are all nice well meaning people with degrees from places like Bowdoin, think I a some kind of savant because I know that MacArthur was in charge of the Southwest Pacific and Henry II is credited with starting the common law. Really?

        1. I can't believe I am only 3 years younger (most likely) than John.

          I always view others as adults but not myself. Except SF, he is no adult...and Warty. But BESIDES those two I see everyone here as an adult...Dagny most of all. I can imagine her scolding voice saying "Boys!!! Stop that!"

          Is it just me?

          1. You're probably old enough to be my dad.

        2. Things aren't that bad. Bowdoin College is not exactly a representative sample of American higher education.

      2. "Lawn Boy Meets Valley Girl: Gender and the Suburbs"

        A whole class on Can't Buy Me Love?

        1. I'd take that too. However, it would require a digression into a discussion of Valley Girl and Secret Admirer.

          1. Valley Girl...a true classic

      3. Here is another money quote.

        So totalitarian is the contemporary university that professors have written to Rollins complaining that his courses are too canonical in content and do not include enough of the requisite "silenced" voices. It is not enough, apparently, that identity politics dominate college humanities departments; they must also rule outside the academy. Of course, outside the academy, theory encounters a little something called the marketplace, where it turns out that courses like "Queering the Alamo," say, can't compete with "Great Authors of the Western Literary Tradition."

        Leftists really are constitutionally incapable of just leaving people the fuck alone.

      4. I absolutely would have taken "Who Indeed: A Critical Analysis of Television's 'Who's the Boss?'" if it had been offered. I'm not even joking.

        1. Yeah, there's no way you could avoid that. That's even better than those courses where the professors bring strippers or dildos or whatever to class to something something the patriarchy.

        2. That is just because you wanted to lust after the teenage Alyssa Milano you pervert.

          1. Better than lusting after Mona, you bigger pervert. I can't believe that you told me about that. In your defense, you were drunk and had just done a hit of ether.

          2. Fuck teenage. I'm gonna go jack off to Commando again.

            1. Rae Dawn Chong does have it goin' on in that flick, but not as much in "Quest for Fire" where she got cranked from behind by Ook.

    2. Also, the market is a beautiful thing, isn't it?

      "Teaching shouldn't be an opportunity for a professor to get off his chest burning issues that no one would listen to except students," Rollins says, sadder but wiser now about the academy. "People want to know what the field has discovered; they aren't interested in your personal views."

      1. Isn't it? People don't want to pay to be indoctrinated into leftist bullshit. Who would have thought such a thing?

      2. And of course, liberals will tell you that if we didn't spend billions on public colleges culture would die. People would never demand such things if it wasn't forced upon them.

    3. "I ought to have looked up the Manhattan Institute [City Journal's publisher] before I replied to your first e-mail," he wrote. "I cannot in good conscience contribute in any way to any project associated with an institution which rejects everything I believe. It says something about the undeclared civil war in U.S. life that I have to say that to you."

      What the fuck does that mean?

      1. It means that McDonald should known her place as a prole and never even tried to contact one of her betters.

        1. heather mcdonald is awesome. her articles debunking much of the mythology surrounding alleged racial profiling especially in cleveland were great.

      2. What the fuck does that mean?


    4. Nice article. I've been listening to and watching Teaching Company's courses for around fifteen years. Great stuff, for the most part. My commutes over the years have been dominated by their courses and the Modern Scholar's.

      It would be nice if there were more of a market for more focused courses (theirs tend to be more introductory in nature), but maybe that will come someday, too.

      I absolutely agree that the students aren't primarily driving the obscure, identity/political-based courses at universities. That's professors with an axe to grind.

      1. My commutes over the years have been dominated by their courses and the Modern Scholar's.

        I've been listening to Bertrand Russell's History of Western Philosophy on my commutes lately. Great stuff.

        1. I read that a while back. I think I acquired the book for $0.50 at a Chicago library book sale years ago.

          1. I was in Chicago the weekend before last for an IBJJF tournament. It is a horrible place, full of horrible people, and I was tremendously unimpressed with the pizza I got.

            1. I have to say that I enjoyed Chicago as a student. Lots of free stuff to do (free museum days, for instance), plenty of good food, great nightlife (great blues scene), etc. Of course, it's a big city, so it depends where you are and when you're there. Also, I should add that I have no desire to live there now.

              The library in question was the gigantic Harold Washington Library in downtown Chicago. If I remember correctly, Daley was in the midst of some budget war with Springfield (esp. Gov. Edgar), so the library was getting the shaft, funding-wise. In the middle of that, they had an enormous sale of discards and donated books, at ridiculously low prices. I bought at least one hundred books--this as a poor law student.

            2. That's because it wasn't pizza, it was a open-faced calzone. Think before you say these things, Mitch Warty.

              1. It was even thin-crust. It was all burnt and terrible and it had hardly any cheese on it. Horrible.

                1. You needed local help. They have a Chicago-style thin crust, too.

  25. Women have responsibility too..I'm an older one..It was suggested when I was growing up..'act like a lady and you'll probably be treated as one'. I'm so glad our sons are grown..but now I have to worry about our grandsons..There really are a lot of nutcases out there of both genders..

    1. Well, I'm an older guy, but I do remember learning that people will judge you by your actions. That's why it takes a real idiot to say, "She should have the right to strip naked and run through the streets and be unmolested." Ok, sure, she Should...but not in the real world.

      Alot of this nonsense comes from the idea that being a guy is some sort of talisman that allows you to behave as you wish with impunity. But guys learn about limits...Chris Rock said growing up he could argue and bullshit with his friends, but as a little guy, he knew there was a line he couldn't cross without getting the shit knocked out of him. Well, he ought to be able to speak his mind to anyone he pleases, and not be molested. But in this reality, guys learn that if you put yourself in jeopardy by being in the wrong neighborhood, or around the wrong people, or shoot your mouth off to the wrong dude, you just might get your ass kicked.

      These women think it's unfair that if they indulge in risky behavior, they may have to live with the consequences.

  26. There goes the higher education bubble.

    1. Where did you put that invisible finger, buddy, and did you get permission first?

  27. under these rules, I can see how a woman could have a drink, but not more than one, as she would be incapacitated at that point and in need of having a man take care of her.

  28. So drinking obliterates responsibility? That's going to wreak havoc on prosecuting DUIs.

  29. *Reason*, as usual, understands. Everyone sane understands... Unfortunately, the sociopaths and ideologues are running the Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights and are running the university in loco parentis (with an emphasis on "loco")...Remember when decent people loved "To Kill A Mockingbird"?...when a white woman crying rape against a black man was an invitation to lynching? Now, Atticus Finch is the villain and any woman crying "rape" is proof of guilt.

    1. I don't think I want to even know anyone who thinks Atticus Finch is the villain.

      Incidentally, I highly recommend Prof. Kors' Teaching Company courses to everyone here. I recall in particular one on Voltaire and the Enlightenment being quite good.

  30. Too many are stuck with archaic view of sex that it is something a man does to a woman. That gorgeous creature Andrea Dworkin used to argue that all sex is assault by a man on a woman because the man penetrates the woman. You could just as accurately and idiotically argue that the woman engulfs the man and that this is an act of aggression and assault.

  31. In the "hypothetical" at the beginning of the article. Diane assaulted poor Jack when she grabbed his groin and ground her ass against his pelvic region. Mothers start telling your sons that when the dirty whore touches them in their no-no zone, they need to tell someone right away.

  32. Is political correctness still running amok?Wow how early 90,s is this issue?

  33. I didn't get to go to college, and I don't have any sons going there, so I say PROSECUTE THEM ALL!

    1. Amen, brother, they must have done something!

  34. How is running naked through the streets and getting molested the same as having sex that you later regret?

  35. All sex with women should be considered statutory rape. The relationship between men and women is like the relationship between adults and children, after all.

  36. "Can I put my finger inside you?"


  37. No problem, just have a hidden camera recording your encounter, and all the consentings, and you'll be OK.

    1. which will run afoul of two party consent laws in many states(audiotaping the consent), not to mention that filming a sexual encounter w/o advising your partner can leave you open to some serious civil liability.

      other than that, a great idea (rolls eyes)...

      1. Sargasm detector broken?

        1. yea, i actually considered that, but i didn't give you enough credit for sarcasm :l

          1. Dunphy,

            What if it's a cop that does it?

            1. Why would a cop bother with that? They can get handjobbed to orgasm on prostitution stings any time they want.

              1. in my state, cops cannot audiotape the sting unless they have a warrant (unlikely, since the warrant has to have specificity as to target and establish PC).

                videotape is fine.

      2. other than that, a great idea (rolls eyes)...

        Tell that to those kids at Hofstra University.

  38. While I agree that colleges have no business regulating relations between people 18 and older, I managed to get through college without ever touching anyone sexually without their consent. It's really not that hard.

    1. private colleges most certainly DO have an interest in doing so. for example, a religious university (BYU) is well within their rights regulating perfectly LEGAL behavior (not like alleged sexual assault shit) like premarital sex. that's part of their "mission" so to speak.

      it's only a problem when it's kangaroo court'esque (iow no due process) or vaguely written and arbitrarily/ capriciously applied. *if* one believes in choice and a marketplace, one accepts that there is a market for some (obviously PRIVATE) universities that have very different behavior codes than others.

    2. So you never once slept with a girl who had been drinking or using drugs? Not even once?

      1. He never once slept with a girl

      2. Nope. For me, the assurance that my partner is really into it is a major turn-on. The lack of such assurance would make me feel skeezy (which isn't, in my case, arousing).

        1. who the hell said they aren't actually into it? Seems to me alcohol just lets women pu their guard down and admit to themselves they want a little action

          1. Perhaps, but if they've been drinking, there's no way that I can be sure.

  39. The Office of Civil Rights is currently protecting children/teenagers who are claiming a disability known as "Oppositional Defiance Disorder" so that they can have a "plan" to deal with any behavior issues that might arise in a classroom -- personal responsibility is history in this country, friends. Everyone is a victim.

    1. i deal with a fair # of kids who have been "diagnosed" with ODD in my job.

      one was an 11 yr old (big kid) who beat the crap out of one of his teachers.

  40. As some have stated, it's feminists' aims to disenfranchise men from all areas of society. What they truly want, and basically have in this country, is a male slavery, where women have full "rights" to act how they please, fuck who they please, but where men have all the responsibilities - paying for bastard kids that might not even be theirs, getting sent to prison on the whims of a woman who cries assault, and now being considered guilty of sexual assault even if likely innocent.

    Barack Obama's administration is run by feminists. He appointed two radical feminist Supreme Court judges, and will appoint more if re-elected. The Dept. of Education, an agency which should be abolished today, is enforcing these ridiculous rules. OUR tax dollars are paying for innocent kids' rights to be trampled. Where is the outcry? Why isn't this talked about all over TV? I only found this stuff out while surfing the web. People need to know about this, so they can push for abolishing the Dept. of Education completely and getting the worst President in history out of office.

  41. A public college is going to get slapped, hard, on a due process violation in trying to follow this policy.

  42. Give the boys and girls guns. If he/she doesn't shoot the other, it was consentual.

  43. If any state wants to (and they should) it could make it an option for an accused student to request a state investigation of the alleged assault. That investigation would use customary rules of evidence, representation, and due process. If a student exercises that option that investigation and its result would preempt the procedures of the college or university. The result would be binding.

  44. Easy fix. Just give each woman an Everything's OK Alarm.

  45. put your hands where we can see them.

  46. I think Hugh Laurie and Steven Fry may have already prepared the video clip on how to have sex in college under these new regulations over twenty years ago. You can find the video on YouTube @ (enter "A Bit of Fry and Laurie Pre-coital Agreement" if the link doesn't work). It is a 4 minute 45 second video where the two comedians are acting like two lawyers representing a couple planing out a sexual encounter.

  47. More on the OCR's campaign against due process here and here.

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