Rape

Does Joe Biden Actually Believe His Own Campus Rape Scare Statistics?

The federal government has blurred the lines between harassment, unwanted touching, and rape.

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Biden
Screenshot via Mic

The activist coalition to reduce campus sexual assault—which includes celebrities, members of Congress, and even the Obama White House—has always expected the public to endorse a weird contradiction: college rape is a pervasive epidemic that touches a quarter or more of all female students, they say, but at the same time, it isn't serious enough to merit the application of stronger corrective measures. 

By "stronger corrective measures," I mean the outright abolition of dormitories, or reinstatement of single-sex facilities, or other things along those lines. 

If that sounds crazy, consider what society would demand of a factory that allowed more than 20 percent of its workers to be maimed, or an automobile manufacturer that installed faulty breaks in a quarter of its vehicles. We needn't even extend the analogy this far: if a hospital allowed a significant number of its patients to be raped, would there not be calls to shut down the hospital? 

To be clear: I don't favor closing colleges, but only because I don't buy the activists' claim that campus sexual assault is an epidemic. The question, then, is why do activists support marginal solutions—affirmative consent, bystander intervention, one-sided sexual misconduct hearings—to a problem they consistently describe as a pervasive culture of violent crime?

Vice President Joe Biden's recent interview with Mic's Antonia Hylton is a perfect illustration of this contradiction. In the interview, Biden defended the work he has done to reduce campus sexual assault, including championing the "It's On Us" bystander intervention campaign, and the Education Department's push to punish rape under the Title IX anti-harassment statute. But he also accepted the validity of scare statistics that, if accurate, would suggest the need for more direct intervention: 

Mic: Well, but let's take Harvard for example, where I went to school. Forty seven percent of the women in my graduating class who interacted with single-sex social organizations reported, by the time that they graduated, they had been sexually assaulted. Do you think that that indicates a specific and localized crisis? 

JB: Well, I think it indicates that there's a real problem at Harvard, and it's the responsibility of the president of Harvard University and the administration to go in and investigate it and if it's occurring and they can show that, get rid of the — get rid of those fraternities on campus that are engaged in it. 

But "getting rid of those fraternities" wouldn't be nearly enough. The same survey that Hylton is citing put the overall, not-just-limited-to-fraternities number at 31 percent, and determined that the overwhelmingly most common place for women to be assaulted was campus dormitories. 

Note that I'm using the word "assaulted" here because that's how Hylton phrased the statistic. But the actual survey did not find that 47 percent of some women and 31 percent of all graduating Harvard women had been sexually assaulted. Rather, it found that these women had been victims of "nonconsensual sexual contact." This seems like a meaningful difference, since "nonconsensual sexual contact" strikes me as a much broader category of behavior. Imagine, for instance, a male student brushing up against a female student at a party, or attempting to grind on her without asking first (keep in mind that under an affirmative consent standard, all contact is nonconsensual without specific prior agreement). The female student might describe this act as nonconsensual sexual contact—and she would be justified in doing so—even though her experience doesn't really rise to the level of sexual assault. 

Nonconsensual touching is a problem, too. But an epidemic of teenagers not keeping their hands to themselves is not remotely the same thing as an epidemic of rape. 

Unfortunately, this blurring of the lines that distinguish problematic behavior on campuses from criminal assault might become the most lasting legacy of the Biden-era anti-rape coalition. Thanks to federal guidance as relentlessly confusing as it is illiberal, universities are now policing harassment, nonconsensual touching, and forcible rape as if these behaviors are equally prevalent and similarly concerning. But the Title IX approach is simply ill-matched for the least and most serious of these offenses: rape should be handled by the police, and allegations of subjective harassment ought not to be policed at all. 

Ironically, the problematic conduct falling in the middle—objective harassment, nonconsensual touching—might actually be best handled by the sorts of strategies some activists recommend: awareness campaigns, education about consent norms, alcohol abuse counselling, etc. But exaggerating the extent of the crisis—asserting that one in four women are victims, not just of unpleasant behavior, but of sexual assault—has made it much more difficult to meaningfully address it. 

[Related: Five Years After the Feds Escalated the Title IX Inquisition, Are Students Ready to Sue?]

NEXT: New GAO Report Details Scope of Federal Government Inefficiency

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  1. Joe Biden believes that campus individuals who identify as female only need a shotgun to defend themselves.

    I thought about making a joke about his dead son being a rapist, but then I thought it would be too crass.

    1. Did the grave they put him in consent to being penetrated?

    2. Joe B is like the Cleveland Browns

      1. I’m a Browns fan and am insulted. Biinden isn’t in there class,and that should tell you something.Go Buckeyes,Ohio’s best pro team.

  2. I wonder how many cases there are of unwanted touching by Joe Biden?

    The guy is a serial rapist, I tell ya.

    1. Jimmy Savile with a scowl.

      1. The STEVE SMITH of inappropriate touching.

    2. Makes George Bush’s neck rub on Merkel seem quaint.

    3. Biden probably has seen Valerie Jarrett rape Barry lots of times. If he didn’t like it, he would’ve said something by now.

  3. “Forty seven percent of the women in my graduating class who interacted with single-sex social organizations reported, by the time that they graduated, they had been sexually assaulted.”

    I don’t know how many women “interacted with a single-sex social organization” but I’m still calling BULLSHIT.

    1. Further into the article it’s noted how far down “sexually assaulted” has been defined.

    2. I never once interacted with a single sex social orginization through out college. It’s probably a self-selection thing and an egging each other on thing. “That guy didn’t just trip and fall on me, he obviously was engaging in an elaborate scheme to touch my boob.” (This literally happened. Yes, the guy really did just trip and fall, we were in an area with a bunch of obstacles on the ground)

      1. Well, y’know, if guys aren’t trying to touch them then they aren’t attractive. Being attractive is everything. Therefore if you accuse lots of people of trying to touch you, you must therefore be pretty. This means you have everything.

        Note that I’m of the firm opinion that the insular culture of women keep women down more than anyone else does. The social constructs surrounding women of their own making are more heinous than any of the one’s arguably put in place by men these days. Nothing is stopping a woman from doing whatever she wants, other than the judgments of other women. It’s…actually kind of scary to witness this process unfold organically in the moments when the mask slips.

    3. Depends on how “sexual assault” is being defined. If it includes someone touching your butt at a party or an unwanted hug or kiss, then I’d believe it. By that standard I’ve been sexually assaulted many times.

  4. That picture of Eli Wallach from Godfather III is not very flattering.

    1. Officer Jim Lahey at 80!

    1. Did he touch you like this? No? How about like this?

  5. I wonder what makes “lunchbox” Joe Biden tick.

    1. The thought of running his hands all over an unsuspecting young lady’s taut, nubile skin?

      1. Hawt.

        1. Wafting her clean, feminine scent while gently whispering encouragement into her soft, silky ear.

          1. The sweet nothings he murmured on the state powers granted under the expansive interpretation of the Commerce Clause engorged his member such that it left the stitching of his pant leg strained and a bruise on the hamstring of Stephanie Carter.

            1. All of you are sick, sick individuals.

              I approve.

              1. H&R: come for the liberty promoting posts, stay for the depraved comments.

  6. Does Joe Biden Actually Believe His Own Campus Rape Scare Statistics?

    Since he is likely the cause of about half of those statistics, I am going to say yes. Lowballing himself, if anything.

    1. That’s not ALL he’s lowballing.

    2. What happens in the Camaro stays in the Camaro.

      1. Trans Am

        1. Yes, a white Trans-Am. He really regretted not getting a black one like Burt Reynolds drove in Smoky and the Bandit

          1. GM survived and Osama died – but Pontiac didn’t make it. Trans-Am no more gone. Camaro with chicken on the hood is closest.

            But who are we kidding? Joe’s a Carbontologist now.

            What happens in the Camaro Volt stays in the Camaro Volt.

            1. Fine, I’ll be more specfic:

              …a white 1978 Trans-Am…

              1. And, I might add, he only occasionally drives the Volt down to the Farmer’s Market to creep on hippy chicks.

              2. With T-top? Or is that from another car, like the Camaro? I honestly don’t know.

  7. These people don’t “believe” anything except their own entitlement to rule.

    They have seized on post-modern dismissals of objectivity and truth, because objectivity and truth interfere with their ability to rule. They believe, really believe, the lunatic notion that “perception is reality”, that subjectivity is all there is, so if someone believes they have been raped, they have been raped for all purposes, “reality” be damned.

    Our elites and the ruling class they have spawned are genuinely insane, IMO. Talking about whether they “really believe” something is to miss the point – they don’t really believe in anything except their own nihilistic fantasies where they are the ordained Masters of the Universe, with the ability to alter reality to fit their whims.

    1. “… the ability to alter reality to fit their whims.”

      I don’t know if they believe that perception is reality but they sure as hell know how to sell it. They invented this problem out of thin air after spending decades brainwashing the target demographic into swallowing this kind of shit whole. Now it is a pretense for increasing their own power exponentially.

      The story someone posted this morning about CA wanting to do away with the statute of limitation on sexual assault is truly frightening. They are deliberately creating a reign of terror, turning everyone against everyone else, creating a society of suspicion and fear. I am reminded of the first hand accounts of life in East Germany were people didn’t speak to each other, even with their own families. Everyone was a potential informant. They all kept their heads down, went out as little as possible and did as little as possible.

      It is no exaggeration to say that these kinds of people want to create a nation that is a prison.

      1. The story someone posted this morning about CA wanting to do away with the statute of limitation on sexual assault is truly frightening.

        Indeed. The number of posters here who supported unlimited statutes of limitation is frightening, to me. I suspect they haven’t given much thought to why we have such things, and how essential they are to rule of law and a criminal justice system founded on the State proving every element of a crime beyond a reasonable doubt.

        1. I just skimmed over that part. I had the Impression that they weren’t supporting it as much as they were pointing out the ridiculousness of setting out a certain class of crimes against persons as worse than others. Of course doing away with all time limits for prosecution on all classes is what will follow if they succeed in doing it for one class.

          Maybe one poster did seem serious but I don’t remember who.

          1. I missed it entirely.

            I’d say that statutes of limitations are a good thing. But it’s not really a question for which there is an obvious libertarian answer.

        2. There should be probably not be statutes of limitations on serious crimes, but perhaps then to compensate, there should be statutory limitations on the age of evidence. Ideally, as part of a reform of forensic standards that requires extensive scientific testing on the scale of testing to validate a type of evidence’s reliability in identifying persons and their role in a crime scene. Amazing that if a pharma company kills ten people with a poorly tested drug, it’s a horrifying outrage, but if a state locks up a thousand innocent people and kills twenty more by using bite mark analysis, eh.

          1. The problem with this idea is that if enough time is allowed to pass, how does one defend themselves from any accusation?

            Can you price exactly where you were 36 years ago today?

            What if the accusation was, 36 years ago in the spring. Can you give a strong alibi for all of spring 36 years ago?

            At least with murder and having no statute of limitations, you have a body and therefore you have eternal proof of the crime.

            No so with all other crimes.

  8. It would be fasinating to design a University around the demands of the SJWers and rape fantasists. If you gave them everything they want, what would that look like, exactly?

    Forget the idiot curriculum. I’m thinking a series of highly segregated dorms, mass surveillance, only completely controlled interactions between students, etc.

    Just how ugly would it be? How many people would actually prefer to go to school there?

    1. Each lecture hall would have a large storage locker outside for the mattresses carried by the students.

      1. No, you’re missing the point. The students would be segregated and monitored at all times. Any contact between students could only occur in the presence of chaperones provided by the university to ensure that all activities are covered by affirmative consent and that such activities cease the moment consent is withdrawn. Under these circumstances no student would ever find themselves in a position where they needed to carry a mattress around. This university is about preventing mattress girl from existing in the first place.

        1. This university is about preventing mattress girl from existing in the first place.

          I thought that’s what the abortion clinics were for.

        2. Bob Jones University circa 1976 then? Funny how the extremists on both ends of the spectrum circle around to the same solutions.

        3. Rachel Maddow’s smirking perky mug would be plastered everywhere; ‘Big Sister’ is watching.

        4. So we’re back to the Victorian Age, with exceptions for gay/bisexual/transgender/biracial/ etc persons. But I wonder if they will be held to the same standards?

          1. A gay man could never rape anyone, and the suggestion that he could makes you a homophobe.

            1. Nah, you’re behind on the rhetoric now. Gay men, being men, are no longer a favored group. Gay men can rape men. It’s women who “can’t” rape.

        5. No, but lesbians could be trusted enough not to need chaparones.

    2. The blueprints are online.

      1. heh. I knew what it was before I clicked it.

      2. I thought about something a little more up-to-date, like the one in Florence, Colorado…

    3. “How many people would actually prefer to go to school there?”

      Mizzou enrollment is down 20% and they are closing two dormitories for lack of occupants.

      Were you to go whole hog on the SJW model you wouldn’t get an single taker. The SJWs themselves wouldn’t want to be there. That is not what they want. What they want is to disrupt and destroy the places that aren’t like that.

      1. What they want is to disrupt and destroy the places that aren’t like that power.

        Specifically the power to destroy the lives of anyone they dislike (cis-hetero white male shitlords, mostly) at a whim.

        1. I really fucked up the tags on that one. There wasn’t supposed to be a link and the italics were supposed to close after the first sentence.

    4. I’d have to guess that very few people would want to attend that school. I can’t say I know for sure, but my hunch is that most young students still just want to hang out and hook up and get drunk as a key part of their college experience.

    5. Nah, they’re not puritans. They want something close to what they already have — namely, a endless bacchanalia combined with the ability to summarily charge any male student with sexual misbehavior and punish him based solely on the displeasure of any female student with nothing resembling due process.

  9. MALE GAZE HATE CRIMINAL

  10. I doubt Biden even knows what he is saying half the time, let alone believes it.

    1. Disagree. I think he doesn’t know what he’s saying, but he does indeed believe it. The flip side of the coin is Hillary, who knows exactly what she’s saying, but doesn’t believe any of it.

      1. You mean she’s not standing up for the little people?

        *faints*

    2. So the presidential race is shaping up as a contest between 2 of these: Biden & Trump.

  11. Does Joe Biden Actually Believe HIS OWN Campus Rape Scare Statistics?

    Well, if unwanted touching is included, I imagine the percentage is close to 100% for Biden — and that is just the women/girls he touches in public in front of the cameras.

    1. Yeah, under his own definition, he’s a serial rapist

  12. Biden was on the campus of my alma mater last week stumping for this agenda (and thankfully not out doing something more dangerous, I guess). The local news channel uncritically parroted the statistic that 28% of the women on this campus had been sexually assaulted, ranging from unwanted touching to rape. Then they interviewed some campus activist airhead about this crisis.

    Television media, please stick to getting the weather report wrong.

    1. something more dangerous

      So he didn’t get out his butterfly knife this time?

    2. ranging from unwanted touching to rape

      Why there isn’t more focus on this ridiculous definition, I don’t know. And I’m pretty surprised that 100% of people haven’t experienced some unwanted touching that could by some stretch of the imagination be considered sexual.

      1. New report: 77% of people have suffered life-threatening injuries at their workplace, ranging from paper cuts to decapitation.

  13. has always expected the public to endorse a weird contradiction: college rape is a pervasive epidemic that touches a quarter or more of all female students, they say, but at the same time, it isn’t serious enough to merit the application of stronger corrective measures.

    Democratic Party-wise, the contradiction is actually three-fold; it’s a pervasive epidemic, that we shouldn’t address, because we want to send *everyone* to college (to get raped) for free.

    1. And don’t advise anyone to avoid or even be cautious in dark or remote [ie high risk] areas as that is victim blaming and you know it just shouldn’t ought happen. But if it does you male extortionist are collectively at fault for it.

      Wish we had these scenarios in my college logic class.

    2. we want to send *everyone* to college (to get raped) for free

      Don’t all womyn DESERVE a 25% chance to be raped?

  14. If anyone knows about rape, it’s Joe Biden…

  15. Does Joe Biden Actually Believe His Own Campus Rape Scare Statistics?

    I doubt he really gives a shit if his rape scare statistics are true or not. Calling men rapists and falling in behind the feminist social justice cadres has proven a winner for the Democrats. Or at least they believe its a winner. College aged men haven’t shown much of any sign of giving them pushback, so why let truth get in the way of a convenient narrative.

    To any young men in college, I have a simple piece of political advice – every elected Democrat in office (as well as quite a few Republicans) is more than happy to see your life ruined on rape charges, whether true or false, in order to shore up their popularity with the left. Vote accordingly.

  16. Were you to go whole hog on the SJW model you wouldn’t get an single taker. The SJWs themselves wouldn’t want to be there.

    *clears throat*

    Then how do you explain OBERLIN?

    1. Well, Lena Dunham is an alum, so I’m guessing it exists more to satisfy critics rather than because people actually want to go there.

      1. So is Michelle Malkin. Make of that what you will!

        1. Wow, that is out there.

  17. Note that I’m using the word “assaulted” here because that’s how Hylton phrased the statistic. But the actual survey did not find that 47 percent of some women and 31 percent of all graduating Harvard women had been sexually assaulted. Rather, it found that these women had been victims of “nonconsensual sexual contact.” This seems like a meaningful difference, since “nonconsensual sexual contact” strikes me as a much broader category of behavior.

    “Assault” was their dilution of “rape”.

    Now “contact” is a dilution of “assault”.

    No matter what, they’ll keep getting Huge Scary Numbers because that’s what the dilution is intended to accomplish.

    And they don’t want “Solutions” – they want Power. The point is to being seen as fighting an endless battle. And they need lots and lots of ‘help’ in fighting this battle. (read: money, authority). If the ‘enemy’ isn’t everywhere and constantly threatening them, then its of no use. So it will always be getting ‘Worse’ while never being tangible enough to measure any real changes.

    1. I’ve said this a few times. But it bears repeating.

      Is there anyone who hasn’t been the “victim” of unwanted sexual contact (by some definition)? I know I have. And it doesn’t matter and it is horrendously insulting to actual victims of sexual assault to lump that in with actual rapes and other serious crimes.

      1. …it is horrendously insulting to actual victims of sexual assault to lump that in with actual rapes and other serious crimes.

        I completely agree. My late wife had been raped. Years before I met her. To the day she died, you didn’t want to surprise her from behind. And to the day she died, it took a toll on her. Equating what I saw the consequences of with a regretted drunken hookup or some guy making a pass at her makes a joke out of what she had to deal with.

    2. Sounds like the homeopathic version of rape is what we have now.

      “Sure, its only one part per million rape, but that makes it even more potent!”

  18. Probably he believes it when he says it and doesn’t when he’s not thinking explicitly about it. Because it has to be true, it is true.

    There are five lights, after all.

  19. Isn’t he supposed to be busy curing cancer?

  20. It not only makes it more difficult to address [whatever “IT” is] but creates far greater opportunities for our over reaching government to justify further involvement. Classic creation and expansion of a problem so we can justify our existence and interference.

    Not to mention how this fits a political agenda.

  21. Mic: Well, but let’s take Harvard for example, where I went to school. Forty seven percent of the women in my graduating class who interacted with single-sex social organizations reported, by the time that they graduated, they had been sexually assaulted.

    JB: Well, I think it indicates that there’s a real problem at Harvard, and it’s the responsibility of the president of Harvard University and the administration to go in and investigate it and if it’s occurring and they can show that, get rid of the ? get rid of those fraternities on campus that are engaged in it.

    The interviewer didn’t say “fraternities” he said “single-sex social organizations.” What if some of those were sexually assaulted by lesbian sorority sisters. Oh wait, that’s right, I forgot. Lesbian sex is never rape, whether it’s consensual or not. Being violated by a bull dyke with a strap on is an act of “liberation from the false consciousness caused by the PATRIARCHY”… or something. Nevermind, carry on.

    1. ….

      ….

      i don’t know if that’s the best way to point out that their euphemism is stupid, but Ok.

    2. I share your outrage at the erasure of gay rapists.

    3. Lesbian sex is never rape, whether it’s consensual or not. Being violated by a bull dyke with a strap on is an act of “liberation from the false consciousness caused by the PATRIARCHY”… or something. Nevermind, carry on.

      Add “in the women’s room” and “filmed by a woman” and you’ve described about 30% of modern ‘feminist’ porn.

  22. It must never be forgotten that Obama is the one who really got this ball rolling by directing a change in the interpretation of Title IX.

    This is not the least or worst of the endless list of horrible things that shitheel has done.

    Fuck everyone who voted for him.

    1. “Fuck everyone who voted for him.”

      You just committed, metaphorically, “unwanted sexual assault” [a redundancy if I ever heard one, by the way] and should turn yourself in to the nearest SJW for appropriate redress. And I can just imagine all of the safe spaces you have violated.

      Let us know how that turns out, will you?

      1. You… should turn yourself in to the nearest SJW for appropriate redress.

        I don’t think a change of clothing is going to be enough to fix this case of crimethink, comrade.

    1. Dammit, that was supposed to be a link to the Onion’s search results for “Joe Biden.” Oh well. I’ll just link to this one, because the headline alone made me laugh hard enough to spew soda out of my nose..

      1. “Do me a solid.”

  23. Serious question: Does wearing perfume make one guilty of “nonconsensual sexual contact”?

    1. Perfume on a woman, no; cologne on a man, yes.

      1. cologne Axe Body Spray on a man, yes

        FTFY.

    2. Depends on what it smells like.

      You didn’t really expect serious answers, did you?

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  25. I sincerely believe it all could have been so very different — so much better — between men and women. Maybe there’s still hope. See:

    “The Sexual Harassment Quagmire: How To Dig Out” http://malemattersusa.wordpres…..-quagmire/

    This may be the most thorough analysis you can find of what I think is the sexes’ most alienating and destructive behavioral difference. I believe this difference creates much of what is called sexual assault of women.

  26. “The federal government has blurred the lines between harassment, unwanted touching, and rape.”

    But does it buy votes? All else is commentary.

  27. college rape is a pervasive epidemic that touches a quarter or more of all female students, they say, but at the same time, it isn’t serious enough to merit the application of stronger corrective measures.

    Instead, they propose *subsidized rape* – free college for everybody! Because some young women can’t afford to buy their chance to play rape roulette.

  28. The community activists’ definition of sexual assault devalues the victims of true campus rape. Like much of the pandering of the left wing, it hurts those it purports to help.
    Excellent article by the way….

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