Friday, November 02, 2018

Instances Of Communism- College Student Publishes “Rape” List

Society is both stupid and boisterously insufferable from an activism standpoint, as the assault on history continues with a noxious agenda intertwined with hapless dreams of utopia in creating a culture worthy of an anthill. The frank intolerance and implacability from the extremes of both sides is threatening to transform at least the urbanized parts of the nation into bastions of communism, where the Constitution and basic individual rights are muddled by the crocodile tears of the apparent victims, minorities, entitled intellectuals, and the lazy bums of addicted to soulless bureaucracy of unchecked government.

In a narrative that transcends the basic framework of linguistics, logic, common sense, and decency, a student at the University has founded a website where alleged victims of sexual assaults are encouraged, no given a celebratory parade and a federal grant, to name the alleged perpetrator. Ironically, the Seattle Times reported on this deplorable and disgusting reality in guaranteeing that the founder of the website would not be named in the article. Just another wonderful instance of the mainstream media helping to forward a dangerous agenda to the basic pillars of liberty.

While this whole scenario is about to explode with legal ramifications as to libel and slander, as none of the listed individuals have been formally accused, have the brilliant folks supporting the accusers forgotten the hysteria surrounding the Duke Lacrosse team rape case or Rolling Stone publishing the “a rape on campus” article that was based on a blatant lie? Please read the comments in regards to the Times article at your own risk, as the power of the anonymity breeds ridiculous and disturbing thoughts, with absolutely no regard for the basic right of innocent before proven guilty.

College campuses are already a vast over compensation of liberal tendencies bordering on totalitarianism, and allowing this list as a community only furthers the idea that reasonable families should seriously consider alternatives to higher education, as campaigns of reverse discrimination are commonplace on the fervid academic islands of affirmative action.

The title of the movement behind the damaging website, “Make Them Scared”, says it all. What chance in hell does a male on campus stand now if the other party on a date feels inclined to simply stir up some trouble just because they are having a bad day? This completely discourages men and women to have any sort of dating life, as it will always be in the background that outside the confines of the legal system, a reputation can simply be damaged on a whim. Just ask the team members of the Duke Lacrosse team the public scrutiny and life altering damnation they faced in the wake of prosecutor Nifong’s transgressions, or the tar and feather media campaign led by the intolerable Nancy Grace and her team of feminist goons.

Unfortunately, rapes do happen in the real world and offenders are brought to justice, yet giving young people a free forum to accuse an individual of heinous and violent acts without judge and jury is beyond reproach and similar to the misinformation disaster that is the social networks based on no consequences due to anonymity is probably one of the top ten worst ideas in history. That being said, the spurious and detrimental and underlying principles of an internet corrupted by a noxious bias and patrolled by administrators controlled by an ant hill mentality, is the furthest destination from freedom in a vapid galaxy of counterproductive group think. As societal laws are being projected electronically, the very basis of reality and culture are implied instead of lived. Success is measured through victimhood, rather than merit, and the world is a worse place as a result. Chillingly, science fiction is being intertwined into the fabric of the possible as the majority of the population simply believes it, because they read it.


Free speech on campus isn't so free when it's tied up in red tape

Towson University, a public university within Towson, Md., currently holds a yellow free speech rating from the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education.

This color rating system is used by the organization to illuminate the limits each university imposes on their students' freedom of speech. Green means a college has no policy that directly inhibits free speech. Yellow means a college either uses an ambiguous policy that can be interpreted in such a way as to limit free speech or has a policy that directly imposes a more limited amount of protected expression. Red means a college makes use of at least one policy that does directly limit a student’s right to freedom of speech.

Towson University’s yellow rating indicates that students should be aware the college has multiple concerning policies. One such policy is 06-04.11 — Policy on Time, Place, and Manner. This policy states, “Students, Student Groups, faculty or staff planning Expressive Activity must contact the following offices in advance of any planned Expressive Activity: the Office of Campus Life (Students and Student groups); the Office of the Provost (faculty); and the Office of the Vice President for Administration and Finance (staff).”

 This policy forces students to go through a tangled web of bureaucracy in order to receive approval for any sort of demonstration or event on campus. At any step in the process, any of these three offices could shut down a potential event with one simple rejection. Even if the students receive an affirmative answer from two of the offices, the third one can shut them down. Going through the process of gaining approval from three different offices is itself extraneous and is likely designed to frustrate students into giving up should any potential demonstration be deemed “controversial” by college administrators.

The college makes use of various other ambiguous policies that can be bent in such a way as to fit the needs of college demonstrators. Towson's prohibited conduct policy in the Code of Student Conduct states that “[a]buse of any person; this includes verbal, written, electronic, or telephone abuse” is banned. The policy is so vague and nonspecific it can be applied to almost any situation depending on the whims of administrative staff.

Towson University initially responded to the Washington Examiner, but later ceased to answer questions concerning the abovementioned policies and did not respond to repeated emails asking for further clarification.

“This is exactly the kind of situation that warrants highlighting,” said Young Americans for Liberty Director of Free Speech, Alexander Staudt. “The administration is hiding behind vague policies that give them the authority to shut down students’ First Amendment rights.”


The university degrees that will earn you big bucks and the ones that will leave you empty-handed (communications and tourism students look away now)

Australia's best and worst universities and degrees for landing a high-paying job after graduation have been revealed in a new report into higher education.

The 2018 Graduate Outcomes Survey showed the best courses but also laid bare which degrees are the worst when it came to job availability and pay rises.

The study showed that nine in ten tertiary graduates were working full-time three years after graduating, with an average salary of $70,000.

The latest data from Australia's largest higher education survey was based on the responses of 40,000 students who graduated in 2014 from 60 institutions across Australia.

Graduates who studied medicine, pharmacy and engineering were enjoying the highest average salaries by 2018, with their pay going up by 78 per cent between their entry-level post-graduation jobs and the positions they were filling four years down the line.

Medicine graduates were earning $65,000 straight out of uni in 2015, but that jumped to $98,000 in 2018.

The highest-paid profession four years after university was dentistry, with the class of 2014 averaging $118,000 in salary this year.

On the other end of the scale, teaching degrees had the worst outcomes for graduates when it came to salary growth, with pay only increasing by 15 percent over the four-year period.

When it came to finding work, the worst outcomes were for graduates in tourism, hospitality, personal services, sport and recreation, with only 48 per cent finding a job within a year of gaining a degree.

It was little better for those in the creative arts, such as communications, where the rate of employment in year one was 48.3 per cent - the same percentage as those with degrees in maths and science despite schools trying to push more female students into that sector.

However, all fields of study had an employment rate of at least 85 per cent by year four, indicating the value of tertiary study.

 'A university degree expands your horizons, challenges you and remains one of the surest ways to find full-time work, even when the labour market has been doing it tough,' Universities Australia chief executive Catriona Jackson said in a statement.

'Four out of five people with undergraduate qualifications are working in managerial and professional occupations. These are exactly the type of jobs that the Australian Bureau of Statistics says require a Bachelor’s degree or higher.'

Sydney graduates fared better than their Melbourne counterparts when it comes to salaries.

University of Sydney’s class of 2014 were earning a median salary of $73,000 by 2018, $8000 more than their University of Melbourne counterparts.

Three years after graduation, universities with the highest full-time employment rates for undergraduates include Charles Sturt University in regional New South Wales (93.6 per cent) and Murdoch University in Perth (93.2), followed by University of Technology Sydney (92.7), Canberra's Australian National University (92.2)  and University of South Australia (91.8).


Thursday, November 01, 2018

Policies Targeting Conservative Students Dropped by Kennesaw State University to Settle ADF Lawsuits

Georgia's Kennesaw State University (KSU) has agreed to eliminate policies that may have violated the First Amendment rights of students, after the Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) filed a pair of lawsuits against the college earlier this year.

The ADF, a legal organization that works to protect religious freedom, represented students from the Young Americans for Freedom (YAF), a national conservative student organization, and Ratio Christi, a pro-life Christian group.

In March, YAF students filed a lawsuit against KSU because school officials imposed a unconstitutionally-suspect $320.00 security fee on YAF’s event, which featured conservative speaker Katie Pavlich, because they deemed the event “controversial,” according to the ADF.

KSU officials also used a four-tier “hierarchical caste system” to rank student organizations, giving more funding and resources to higher-ranked groups. Officials ranked groups using “subjective factors” which were “viewpoint- or content-based,” resulting in “preferential treatment” of certain groups.

ADF Senior Counsel Travis Barham called KSU’s speech policies “byzantine,” adding that “it made no sense for the university to keep those policies.”

In the other case, the ADF filed a suit in February on behalf of students of Ratio Christi. KSU forced the students, who were exhibiting a pro-life display on campus, to use a “speech zone” that was less accessible to the students’ intended audience than the space they had originally requested, arguing that the display was “controversial” and making this judgment based on “content and viewpoint.”

The Ratio Christi students could only present their display outside the zone if they agreed to remove pro-life posters from their display.

The speech zone makes up “less than 0.08 percent of the 405-acre campus,” according to the ADF’s formal complaint. Events held there are often viewed by KSU students as “less relevant and legitimate” because the school created the zone after an off-campus group engaged in “offensive and distasteful” speech.

“The goal in creating this zone was to quarantine such speech in one location so that it could be avoided,” the ADF wrote.

The ADF argued, in both cases, that KSU’s policies unconstitutionally violated students’ First Amendment freedoms of speech and association, noting that the First Amendment “prohibits the government from restricting speech” because “listeners or government officials find it controversial.”

To settle the lawsuits, KSU agreed to revise its student organization ranking system and its security fee policy, eliminate its speech zone and allow students to “speak freely in all outdoor areas of campus.”

The college will also pay $20,100 to ADF and Ratio Christi to cover legal fees.

“The marketplace of ideas that a university is supposed to be can’t function properly if officials can charge a group ‘security fees’ just because they don’t like what the group is saying, or if officials can provide funding and the best locations only to those sharing ideas that they prefer,” ADF’s Barham said. “We commend the university for making the necessary policy changes to respect the constitutionally protected freedoms of its students.”

ADF Senior Counsel and Center for Academic Freedom Director Tyson Langhofer also weighed in, arguing that it is “vital” for the university to demonstrate the importance of First Amendment rights.

“Not only is it important that YAF and all students at KSU be able to exercise their constitutionally protected freedoms, but it’s also vital for the university to live by example in demonstrating the importance of those freedoms instead of communicating to an entire generation that the Constitution doesn’t matter,” Langhofer said.


School Board Openly Attacks Chick-fil-A by Passing an Absurd Resolution

The Pittsburgh school board has passed a resolution banning official participation in a running event sponsored by Chick-fil-A — apparently putting preening political correctness above legitimate concerns like encouraging a healthy lifestyle for children and preventing childhood obsety.

According to KDKA-TV, the board voted last week on the resolution to prohibit involvement in the Pittsburgh Kids Marathon and Kids of Steel Program because they say that the chain supports anti-gay causes.

According to the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, Wednesday’s vote was unanimous.

The school district has sponsored a team in the past to take part in the Kids Marathon, a one-mile race that takes place the day before the Pittsburgh Marathon. The district is apparently not going to do that this year, but beyond that, the impact of the resolution is open to question.

“Nothing in this resolution is intended to interfere with an individual employee’s right or the rights of students and their families to participate in these programs and races on an individual basis unrelated to the District or the District schools,” it reads.

That means that if individual students or employees wanted to participate in the Kids Marathon next May, they could do so — just not with the official sanction of the Pittsburgh schools, it seems.

The Chick-fil-A sponsorship of the PIttsburgh Marathon has drawn other protests from gay and lesbian activist groups, but the school board’s action seems to have been decided without the board even reaching out to the organizers of the Pittsburgh Marathon.

When KDKA’s Jon Delano asked Marathon CEO Patrice Matamoros whether anyone from the school district had talked to them about Chick-fil-A’s sponsorship of the race, she said, “No. Nobody’s reached out to us.”

“The school board passes a resolution about the marathon, and they’ve never talked to you?” Delano asked.

“No,” Matamoros responded.

The school board members seemed hazy again on why they were passing the resolution.

Chick-fil-A has “several beliefs, which they’ve expressed officially, largely through religious basis, that are quite discriminatory and are quite inconsistent with the district’s policies regarding discrimination on the basis of gender, race, etc.,” Ira Weiss, the school board solicitor, told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

Pittsburgh City Council member Erika Strassburger, meanwhile, told the Post-Gazette that the very name Chick-fil-A “would be perceived to espouse bigotry and hate.” [Really???]

“This is really about the children and about sending the message to the children of Pittsburgh, and really to everyone, that Pittsburgh, as far as city council is concerned, is welcoming and inclusive for everyone,” Strassburger said.

While Strassburger and council President Bruce Kraus met with the marathon organizers and said their conversation was productive, according to the Post-Gazette, school board members apparently didn’t do the same.

There’s also the fact that the alleged homophobia in question here involves Chick-fil-A executives opposing same-sex marriage and donating to political organizations that also oppose it. The chain’s avowedly Christian roots have made it a regular target of homosexual activists.

In the face of the Pittsburgh controversy, the chain issued a statement disavowing bigotry of any kind.  “Our restaurants welcome everyone, and we have no policy of discrimination against any group,” the statement read. “We do not have a political or social agenda.”

No, but even the appearance of standing up for Judeo-Christian values in any way, shape or form is apparently tantamount to discrimination to the American left in 2018. Mind you, there were no actual discussions between the school board and organizers of the race — much less Chick-fil-A — which makes this appear to be a public relations move more than anything else.

So, again, who does this really affect? Well, according to race organizers,”that the schools’ stand hurts city children whom the Marathon wants to train in healthy running and nutrition,” according to KDKA.

“We have 150 different schools involved in our program in 13 different counties,” Matamoris told the station.

Apparently, fighting childhood obesity — another bugaboo of the left (and a far more deserving one, we might add) — isn’t as important as simply appearing to be politically correct, all without concrete consequence.

Absurd is the word.


The Failure of Holocaust Education in Britain

Since he first spoke about his experiences in the 1990s, Holocaust survivor Ivor Perl has come across a lack of understanding with increasing frequency. Perl was 12 years old when he stepped out onto the ramp at Auschwitz. He has been active in promoting the memory of what happened to Europe’s Jews during the Holocaust across schools in the United Kingdom but now feels that there is no point in continuing to speak about his life.

Perl said the gulf of understanding between himself and the children he talks to is too wide for him to bridge. The pupils he encounters have such a poor understanding of what happened during World War II that his words fall on deaf ears. This is certainly not Perl’s fault. He is an engaging and thoughtful speaker.

Andy Pearce of University College London’s Centre for Holocaust Education is not surprised Perl is disillusioned. His research team, in the world’s largest ever study of its kind, interviewed over 8,000 pupils aged 11-18 in England, where the Holocaust is the only compulsory subject in the national history curriculum. He was shocked to discover that “after 25-30 years Holocaust education is failing to make an impact.”

Perl complains that, although he was born in Hungary, schoolchildren always ask him if he hates Germans and never Hungarians. The UCL findings back up his experience. When students were asked who was responsible for the Holocaust, “Hitler dominated the answer,” Pearce said. “Incredibly when we asked them to tell us who the Nazis were, students responded by saying they were ‘Hitler’s minions’ and ‘Hitler’s paratroopers.’ There was no reference to the Nazi Party as a political movement.” Students also told the researchers that most Jews were killed in Germany. “There was no understanding of collaborating regimes and many believed that mass killing began in 1933.”

Nicola Wetherall teaches at Royal Wooton Bassett Academy in Wiltshire, which has a cross-curricular Holocaust and genocide program built into its curricula. In this, the school is an exception to other secondary education institutions. She said that teachers in other schools not only lack the training and support to deliver effective Holocaust education but simply do not have the time to do so. Although Holocaust education is compulsory in state schools at Key Stage 3 (KS3), a part of the curriculum taught to 11-13 year olds, not all state schools deliver. Timetable pressures mean that the KS3 program which should be delivered in a three-year course is increasingly taught over two years.

In order to fulfill the government guidelines schools often choose the quickest and cheapest option. Holocaust survivors give their time to speak to schoolchildren for free and are supported on those visits by professionals from charities like the Holocaust Education Trust. “It is almost lazy in the case of some schools to invite a survivor in and expect them to do the job for them,” Wetherall said. “It is not common practice to brief and debrief children before a meeting like this.”

Worse, the practice is alienating survivors. Jacob Fersztand, who arrived in Britain in 1945 and was cared for in the same hostel as fellow survivor Ivor Perl, has also decided that he will no longer speak in schools. Fersztand feels that “you can only make children learn what they want to learn,” but also said he feels frustrated that while he is the person who suffered, all the onus is now on him to explain to future generations what happened in the Holocaust.

Ellie Olmer, whose father-in-law is a Holocaust survivor, is an outreach teacher for the Holocaust Education Trust. She accompanies survivors, among them Ivor Perl, when they speak in schools. Olmer said she is positive about the impact that Perl and the others have, but added “the emotional toll on them is very hard.” Olmer found that schools tend to ask for survivors from Auschwitz or Treblinka, which is illustrative in itself as only 70 people survived the Treblinka camp. “They feel that they are not giving the full experience unless they smell the gas.” She said students tend to think that there is a happy-ever-after and have little conception of what it means to live having survived such a trauma. In Olmer’s experience “schools have a tendency to treat the survivors as a commodity and sometimes don’t even offer them something to eat or drink.” She is fearful for the future of Holocaust education. “I love what I do and hope to do it for many years but it all depends on what happens after we lose our survivors.”

In some rural parts of the United Kingdom, like Cornwall, there is, according to Wetherall, no Holocaust education being taught at all despite the fact that it is a legal requirement for schools to do so. “Survivors tend to live in urban areas,” she said, “and it is difficult to get them to speak in schools in remote parts of the country.” Because of this, Wetherall said, the money being spent on the new Holocaust memorial in Westminster should be invested in education programs across the country. Those programs should be delivered by professionals and be less reliant on the survivors.

The current debate over anti-Semitism in Britain’s opposition Labour Party and the views of its leader Jeremy Corbyn have also had a negative impact on Holocaust education in the classroom and made better teacher training even more imperative. Wetherall’s students now ask about Holocaust denial and anti-Semitism. “Two to three years ago I would not have had pupils who would have heard the terms,” she said, adding that “the guidelines have not kept up with these changes, leaving teachers ill-equipped to deal with the issue.”

The UCL study, however, showed more serious problems with Holocaust education than an overreliance on survivors to deliver it. According to UCL’s Pearce, it is “not as simple as students knowing and not knowing. The pupils have significant gaps in their understanding and to fill those gaps they draw on myths in popular culture and this causes more harm than good.”

Pearce said that there is a fundamental problem in the British approach to the Holocaust. The focus wrongly gravitates to Britain’s role in the Allied forces, the liberation of the camps, and to the story of Kindertransport, in which 10,000 Jewish children were brought to the U.K. from the continent in the year before WWII broke out. For Pearce it is a positive and self-congratulatory approach that fails to address the story of the Channel Islands, which were occupied by the Germans, and what the British government knew about the persecution of the Jews and failed to do about it. It is no surprise, he said, that his team found that 32 percent of students in secondary school believe that Britain declared war on Germany because of the Holocaust. In fact, Britain entered the war on Sept. 3, 1939, in response to the German invasion of Poland.

Pearce pointed out that teachers who have no support tend to use films and books, like John Boyne’s novel The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas, as teaching aids. The Holocaust Education Trust advises against its use in the classroom because of its historical inaccuracy, yet the UCL team found that over 80 percent of those pupils interviewed who had read a book on the Holocaust had read that one. The main character in the novel is a 9-year-old boy whose father works as a commander of a concentration camp. He has no idea of the tragedy unfolding around him and innocently befriends a Jewish boy in striped pyjamas. Pearce said the narrative reinforces an inaccurate perception of German ignorance of the Holocaust.

The UCL team also examined what teachers hope to achieve by teaching the Holocaust. Pearce noted that educators have “a tendency to slip into rhetoric. There is a belief that if we study the Holocaust it will stop it happening again.” He added, “It is laudable but it reduces and simplifies history and is something that again comes from wider popular culture.” Indeed the recent decision to build a striking new national Holocaust memorial next to the Houses of Parliament in London was described by the Prime Minister’s Holocaust Commission as a “sacred duty” and announced by a government press release as a “permanent statement of our British values.”

In order to tackle these issues, Pearce said, we must totally rethink the way we teach children about the Holocaust. Mike Levy, a Holocaust educator based in Cambridge, sees the passing of the last Holocaust survivors as an opportunity to do this. He said that rethinking needs to start now, before Holocaust education simply stops when the last survivor dies.

Levy said that there is “an atmosphere of fatigue in the air when it comes to talking about the Holocaust and that students and teachers want to learn more about other genocides and contextualize the Holocaust.” Children need to be taught that there is not a competition about which genocide is worse. “The important thing educationally about the Holocaust is it teaches us a lot about the mechanisms because it is so well documented,” he said. “It is the mother of all genocides.”


Wednesday, October 31, 2018

College Millennials 'Traumatized' by Trump's Election?

When a narrow-minded, coddled generation doesn't get what it wants, it feels traumatized.

A recent survey of students attending Arizona State University found that a whopping 25% were suffering from stress "on par with that of school shooting witnesses" stemming from President Donald Trump’s surprising election victory. Study author Melissa Hagan noted that roughly one in four students "met criteria for clinically significant symptoms," adding that "elevated symptoms of event-related stress are predictive of future distress and subsequent PTSD diagnoses." To be clear Hagan notes that these students are not actually suffering PTSD, but they are currently in a high-risk category.

Evidently, they are feeling severely stressed, but their stress isn’t due to having experienced an actual traumatic event. So what does this say about the state of mind among a significant number of the Millennial generation? When the individual they voted for did not win the election, their world was so rocked that their emotional distress is said to be "on par" with having witnessed a school shooting? This is what happens when the state becomes one’s god. When one’s hopes for the future are almost completely and inextricably tied to the implementation of a political agenda.

As The Resurgent keenly observes, "Elections matter. They have consequences. You should care who wins and who loses. But if the outcome of an election is causing you to have PTSD-like symptoms, it is likely that the real problem isn’t at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. It’s in your own heart."

When a generation is raised up on a steady diet of social grievance culture and encouraged to go "change the world" via social justice activism, politics becomes everything and political opponents devolve into dehumanized and mindless "enemies." Thus the earth-shaking shock when the "enemy" wins an elections.

One last note, speaking of enemies. Many in the Millennial generation — and older people too — suffer actual PTSD from fighting real enemies in true wars. To even remotely suggest that a snowflake who’s upset about Trump’s election is in the same ballpark as Patriots in uniform is not only absurd but denigrating to the service of these brave young soldiers.


University student vows to paint over mural of WW1 war dead as they are ‘white men’

Leftist racism again

A LEFT-WING student union president in the UK has sparked outrage by vowing to deface a mural commemorating the fallen World War One heroes as they are "white men".

Emily Dawes, president of Southampton University Student Union, threatened to paint over the uni’s Rothenstein Mural, which depicts students who died during the Great War collecting degrees that they didn’t get to finish.

"Mark my words — we’re taking down the mural of white men in the Senate room, even if I have to paint over it myself," she tweeted.

Many were outraged at Ms Dawes’ pledge, which came on the centenary of the end of WW1 and the day before the Royal British Legion launched its Remembrance Day Poppy Appeal today.

"The white men who died so you can spout such hateful nonsense?" one person replied. "You’re a f***ing disgrace and should be kicked out of any state education system. A state created by hard working brave people: most of whom were the white men you profess to despise."

Another said, "Is this the mural to those heroic students from the university that had to forego their studies in order to fight for the freedom of Europe in WW1, and never got to graduate?

I’m trying to think of a reason why anyone would actively want to deface a war memorial …"

Another added, "Jesus. Are all students left-wing morons? Only academia could protest a painting that depicts men lost at war protecting the freedoms you take for granted. It’s of days gone not present day. You cant rewrite history even though you lot want to. Grow up. Pathetic."

One said, "What’s she studying, clearly not history. Why can’t people accept you can’t change history. These young men went to far a war against tyranny. Her words are not far off that! Do this or else."

Others fumed that to even want to personally vandalise the mural was "disrespectful" and a "disgrace". "One of the most insensitive and disrespectful comments I have ever seen," one person said. "Time for reflection, time for remembrance of what they gave for our freedom. Never forget #Remembrance #LestWeForget."

Another added, "I hope you start, and immediately get arrested. What a disgrace you are to students everywhere, putting your ignorance on such prominent display."

A few tweeted to the university to bring Dawes’ tweet to their attention. "I really hope you won’t allow that mural to be defaced and painted over?" one said. "Those young men were sent to war and unfortunately a lot didn’t come back to be able to complete their studies! But they gave their lives which means students today can study freely."

Another added, "I have just tweeted @unisouthampton to ask if they will do anything. To talk of those young boys from their uni who died in this way is a disgrace."

One said Ms Dawes was going about it "the wrong way". "If there are black people forgotten you’d have mine (and most people’s) support to include them. We should represent everyone equally. By suggesting the memorial of men who died to protect your freedoms is racist says more about you."

Dawes finally issued a grovelling apology one day after her original tweet and two hours after The Sun Online published its story.

"Firstly, and most importantly, I would like to apologise for the offence and upset I have caused with what I have said. I never meant the disrespect to anyone past, present and future. I had no intention of the tweet being taken literally, and upon reflection realised how inappropriate it was," she said.

"My intention was to promote strong, female leader and not the eradication and disrespect of history. I do not believe that to make progress in the future, we should look to erase the past. Once again, I would like to apologise for the offence and upset I have caused."

Ms Dawes was the president of the university’s Feminist Society before she was elected to current position in the student union.

During her election campaign she called for the Vice Chancellor Christopher Snowden to take a pay cut so that university societies such as her own FemSoc could receive more funding.

The Londoner is currently on a sabbatical from her astrophysics degree.

Southampton University Student Union today apologised for its President’s remarks and has urged her to explain her actions.

"We apologise for the recent statement from our President regarding the Rothenstein Mural and any upset this may have caused," it said.

"This is a personal view and not that of the Union. We do not believe the statement was said to cause upset or disrespect to anyone and does not follow our mission or values. We have reached out to our President to ask for a statement to be released."

A University of Southampton spokesperson said, "The comments made by the Students’ Union President regarding the Rothenstein Mural are not shared by the University of Southampton and do not represent the views of the University community.

"We are very proud to display the Mural, painted in 1916, which serves as a memorial to all members of British universities who served in the Great War (World War I)."

Southampton MP Royston Smith tweeted, "I am proud to live in a country where people voluntarily sacrificed their lives for the freedom that allows people to make ill thought out, insensitive comments such as these. I assume she will reflect and apologise."

Scottish UKIP MEP David Coburn tweeted, "If she vandalises that mural I’ll bring in restorers and get it revealed again."

This outburst came as Cambridge University Students’ Union tried to scrap the mention of poppies in the university’s plans for Remembrance Day.

In an initial poll, 30 of 31 representatives voted to remove the mention of poppies and "British war veterans". The motion was debated and eventually defeated.


Foreign threats to free speech at Australian universities

The growing concern about academic freedom and free speech on university campuses typically relates to illiberal student activists shutting down debate. But there is potentially a more subtle threat to free speech in higher education coming from foreign governments, especially China.

At a CIS breakfast on Monday, NSW Education Minister Rob Stokes outlined his concerns regarding Australian universities being too reliant on international students — to a point that undermines academic independence.

“When academics who criticise certain countries are hauled before senior diplomats to explain themselves, or when universities self-censor by using teaching materials that conform with foreign government propaganda so as to not upset international student cohorts, we have a duty as educators to speak out”, he said.

This may be controversial in some timid quarters but it shouldn’t be. To be clear, no one is suggesting that having large numbers of international students in Australia is a bad thing. Education is Australia’s third-largest export, and international students are an essential part of our higher education sector and university culture.

But given recent cases where academic independence appears to have been undermined on topics regarding Chinese politics, we should be vigilant.

Of course, some people will argue this problem at universities is imagined or exaggerated. Is there any concrete evidence of widespread political interference from China in Australian higher education? Surely, the more fee-paying international students studying here, the better for our economy? And shouldn’t we be far more concerned about attempts by local university student activists to restrict free speech?

Even if we concede the sceptics may have a point, one thing is certain: this is an issue worth debating. We can’t be afraid of identifying potential overseas threats to our universities’ independence out of fear of upsetting foreign governments.

Kudos to Minister Stokes for kick-starting the debate.


Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Princeton Prof Tells MSNBC, Americans 'Are Choosing to Be Racist' If They Support Trump on Caravan

There was much hand-wringing on MSNBC's "Morning Joe," as the liberal hosts and their chorus of liberal experts criticized President Trump for calling himself a "nationalist"at a recent rally. By extension, they also criticized Trump supporters who are falling for Trump's "lies" and "fear-mongering" regarding the thousands of Central Americans now making their way to the U.S. border.

President Trump has called the "caravan" an assault on our country; he has warned that gang members and "unknown Middle Easterners" are in the mix; and he continues to brand Democrats as advocates of open borders and crime at his many campaign rallies.

Just this morning, the president tweeted:

-- "We are a great Sovereign Nation. We have Strong Borders and will never accept people coming into our Country illegally!"

-- "For those who want and advocate for illegal immigration, just take a good look at what has happened to Europe over the last 5 years. A total mess! They only wish they had that decision to make over again."

On Wednesday, Trump's political enemies at MSNBC conceded that the "caravan" may indeed be galvanizing Republican voters, but for the wrong reasons. They denounced the president for using the caravan as a "racist scare tactic" (Mika Brzezinkski); and for his "big lie" and "fear tactics" (Joe Scarborough).

MSNBC contributor Jonathan Meachum explained it this way: "Basically, white folks are looking for someone to blame for the fact that they feel that their opportunities have been limited, and immigration is just the particular manifestation of that."

Guest contributor Eddie Glaude, Jr., the chair of African-American Studies at Princeton University, admitted that the caravan may end up being a winning issue for Trump "because people are choosing to be racist."

"There is an old southern phrase often attributed to Maya Angelou -- when people show you who they are, believe them," Glaude said.

Glaude continued:

And Donald Trump has showed us who he is since the election and over the last two years. Look, when you say I'm a nationalist in front of that crowd, that crowd that's majority -- that's majority white, in the context of your race baiting with regards to immigration, we know that immigration law in this country has always been about race, ever since the first naturalization act in the 1800s. We know that that's the case. Right, and the idea that Jonathan said that the blue wave might be a blue trickle because it's working.

So we're talking about the moral character of Donald Trump, but by extension we're talking about the moral character of the nation. What does it mean that this is working? What does it say about who we are? Right? This is PROFOUNDLY racist, and we have these moments in the history of the country where we can actually change the course of our pattern, the direction. We can actually be otherwise.

But in those moments it seems to me we have always historically chosen to double down on a notion of whiteness. And here Donald Trump is putting it before us again, and it seems that every single time that we do it, democracy takes a body blow.

And so here we are in this moment where what we think is a blue wave, which I think will be determined by those unlikely voters, those nonvoters, may turn into a trickle because people are choosing to be RACIST, Jonathan. They're choosing to act on the basis of their fear and that fear is rooted in the fact that white people think that they can't have the life that they should have as white people.

Host Joe Scarborough lectured viewers:

Well, you know, history will record 13 days from now whether this works or not. For decades to come, for generations to come, history will record whether Donald Trump's appeal to racism and bigotry and hatred will work or not.

Here's the incredible thing, that in 13 days you will have the choice to determine how history is written, more so than any election in our lifetime. This will be either a verification of who we have been or a rejection of who we have been and a determination of where we are going, if we still believe that we're one nation under God and if we still believe that out of many we are one.

And so we can't say whether this is working or not because we won't know whether this is working or not until you get up 13 days from now and take your family and friends to the school nearby you or the post office nearby you or a community center nearby you and vote. Do you realize that? How awesome is that? How awe-inspiring is that, that you, not me, not Mika, not anybody on this panel -- YOU have the power to write history and determine whether what you're seeing on TV every day works or not.

And you've got 13 days to call your friends, your neighbors, your loved ones, whatever party you're in, whatever side you're on, however you want this election to turn out, the history of this country, who we are and who we will be -- will be determined 13 days from now. That's pretty powerful.


The Federal Student Loan Fiasco

In all the annals of really bad decisions made in the pursuit of political benefit, President Obama’s 2010 federal government takeover of the student loan industry from the private sector has to rank among both the worst and the most costly.

How do we know? Here’s how Cory Turner of National Public Radio recently described what has become the modern day role of the U.S. Department of Education:

"Today, the U.S. Department of Education is, essentially, a trillion-dollar bank, serving more than 40 million student borrowers."

The Federal Reserve puts the numbers at 44.5 million student loan borrowers with a combined student loan debt liability of $1.5 trillion. Meanwhile, the U.S. government has cumulatively borrowed about $1.2 trillion to fund its Federal Direct Student Loan Program, with nearly $1 trillion of that total having been borrowed since President Obama put the U.S. Department of Education into the student loan business in March 2010.

The Education Department’s bureaucracy isn’t doing well in running its student loan business. CNBC reports on the state of defaults and delinquencies that are likely making the program a money loser for U.S. taxpayers instead of the money-maker that President Obama intended.

The Department of Education estimates that just over 10 percent of student loan borrowers are in default, and researchers at the Center for American Progress estimate that as many as 30 percent of student loan borrowers can’t keep up with debt just six years after graduation.

Default and delinquency data like that means that the whole federal takeover of the student loan business from private sector banks has been a costly fiasco and will continue to be for years to come.


School bullying costing Australian taxpayers millions in pay-outs to students and teachers who have suffered psychological injury and 'severe psychiatric disorders'

An inevitable result of the Leftist destruction of school discipline

Bullying in schools is costing taxpayers millions of dollars as both students and teachers seek compensation for psychological problems. Claims and out-of-court settlements surrounding bullying and harassment cost the NSW state government more than $7 million between 2014 and 2017. In many cases, the payouts were funded by taxpayers.

NSW Education Minister Rob Stokes conceded bullying has become one of the most challenging issues in primary and high schools.

Another growing concern is the issue not being addressed at home.  'Family structures are changing and becoming looser and in some cases weaker,' Mr Stokes said. 'We need to equip kids to help each other reject bullying because we can't rely on families as much as we have done in the past.'

According to figures from the Freedom of Information laws, compensation payments to 20 students and three teachers averaged more than $300,000 each.

'The consequences of bullying are lifelong and devastating, and also have huge impacts on the health of our society and the productivity of our economy,' Stokes said.

'Bullying has always been a problem but we've never quite understood how much damage it causes and once we have better ways of addressing it, we can build a happier and more confident society.'

Bullying cost the state government $4 million in payouts in 2014, $1.194m in 2015, $984,886 in 2016 and $860,257 last year.

Since axing 'Safe Schools'— a controversial anti-bullying program implemented in 2010, Stokes has been searching for a better remedy to tackle the social issue.

A new anti-bullying video starring kindergarten kids will be launched at an Australian-first anti-bullying strategy conference on Monday.

The conference will hear from leading figures in bullying, aggression and school adjustment from Australia, Canada and Finland. They will also travel to regional areas in Ballina, Dubbo, and Wagga Wagga for additional feedback on the issue.


Monday, October 29, 2018

Polish schools cancel LGBT tolerance day under government pressure

Several schools in Poland canceled activities promoting tolerance
for gays and lesbians following government pressure and threats in some places.

More than 200 schools had planned to take part in "Rainbow Friday," an anti-discrimination event that a civic rights group, the Campaign Against Homophobia, had promoted in hopes of building greater acceptance for LGBT students.

Broadcaster TVN reported some schools pulled out of the event following outcry.

The education minister of Poland’s conservative government, Anna Zalewska, had warned ahead of time that any principals who allowed such events to take place could face negative consequences. She also asked parents to report any such activities to authorities.

It was not immediately clear how many schools canceled plans to participate.


Drinking vodka from a pig's head, chilli powder on genitals and fishing a dead rat from barrel of cider: The deadly student initiation rituals rife in UK universities

Deadly university initiations similar to the one which was attended by Ed Farmer before his death continue to blight British higher academic institutions - despite being banned by a number of students' unions.

The death of Newcastle University student Ed Farmer, 18, following an night out involving drinking vodka from a pig's head and apple bobbing in urine, has brought the rituals under further scrutiny.

During the initiation-style bar crawl attended by Farmer in December 2016, two rounds of at least 100 tripples vodka and oranges were bought to be shared between 40 students.

His death following the Agricultural Society event joins the continuing spate of alcohol-related deaths linked to initiations.

Farmer's tragic case is just the latest in a string of historic initiation incidents which have led to the death of students.

In 2003, Staffordshire University fresher Alex Doji, 18, died after choking on his own vomit following a rugby team initiation. Back in 2005, Hull University student Tom Ward, 19, died after drinking 12 pints and up to six shots in a rugby team initiation.

And in 2008, Exeter University banned all student initiation ceremonies after fresher Gavin Britton, 18, took part in a drinking initiation that involved downing a cocktail of shots, followed by pure spirits during a three-hour pub crawl.

Following the challenge, Mr Britton was violently sick and died from acute ethanol poisoning according to toxicology reports.

Newcastle University also officially bans initiations to its student societies.

The university website warns 'anyone found to have organised or participated in an initiation ritual will be subject to disciplinary action.'

But when asked about the university ban on initiations, students were only vaguely aware of it. 'You get emails, but I don't think anybody is really going to listen to it - they'd just call them something else,' one said.

'You'd pour spirits into a football boot and drink them, or do shots of something that's a bit disgusting,' one student recalled. 

Lesley Braiden, academic registrar at Newcastle University, said it was 'difficult, if not impossible, to monitor' initiation events.

Warwick University student Jason Venezia, 19, lost his life after drinking half a litre of vodka in 20 minutes during a university drinking game in 2008, an inquest heard. 

Despite these tragic incidents, footage of excessive drinking and 'lad-culture' behaviour has been proudly shared online, with students made to drink pints upside down, strip to their underwear and eat animal food.

In a report uncovered by The Times last year students at Loughborough University were challenged to drink four litres of cider and then told to vomit into a bucket. The last to finish then had the vomit thrown over them.

In another absurd ritual, University of Bath students reportedly performed in an initiation that saw them being blindfolded before having their hands urinated on.

In 2017, there were reports of students at Manchester University having urine, faeces, vomit and even chilli powder rubbed on their genitals during a rugby team initiation event.

Other initiation rituals allegedly involved a type of apple bobbing event in which students were told to fish out a dead rat from a barrel of cider, according to The Tab. 

One student told The Tab Manchester: 'I know someone who had to shave their head as a forfeit so their friend [who was already paralytic] didn't have to down another pint.'

In one of the many initiation videos posted online, around 30 Aston University rugby freshers appear to drink copious copious amounts of alcohol through a funnel as the older, fully-clothed students look on.

In another clip posted online, one of the male students pulled his trousers down and had toilet roll hanging out of his bum, which was then lit while still attached to him.

In shocking footage posted on YouTube in 2009, freshers from Oxford Brookes university were made to eat chilis and cat food, drink pints while upside down and carry out degrading acts on the floor while beer, cream and flour were thrown over them.

Footage posted online by Kent's korfball team shows them injecting fruit with alcohol during an initiation-style event where students were in fancy dress.

Even though the rituals are banned by some universities, the absurd ceremonies that remain in existence are a significant cause for concern and continue to pressure young academics into dangerous drinking.

The 'rite-of-passage' remains popular, particularly for 'fresher' students joining sports societies.

Often first year students are made to drink heavily and carry out dangerous stunts in order to impress their older peers.

Last year an unnamed student posted on the social media site The Student Room about their initiation experience.

They wrote: 'The initiation was the final straw for me, don't wanna be too extreme with it on here but we were expected to drink whatever they asked us to and I'm not talking alcohol and strip naked whilst they dragged our knees across the street.

'I packed it in at that point, went down to a local club instead and just played there. If you don't play along you don't get picked basically.'

In 2016 there were reports of female Cambridge University students taking part in initiations including 'beer baguette', that saw them drink lager through a hollowed-out French stick and 'heels relays', where members had to run in their highest pair of shoes while passing shots to teammates.

This year, Buckinghamshire's ski and snowboarding society shared a well-edited video of their initiation on social media.

Students are seen drinking 85p cans of cheap lager through funnels during the mixed-gender event, while other drinks the cans from in between the legs of the other undergraduates.

In one of the clips, one of the boys drinking from the legs of another man is slapped over the head as he drinks the cheap lager.


Australia: 'Knuckle-dragging philistines': Labor targets Liberals for blocking arts grants

So we have a Leftist party wanting to transfer taxpayers' money to middle-class ivory-tower types.  That leaves the conservatives as defenders of the workers' money.  Something wrong there?

My own first degree was an Arts degree but I think the argument in favour of Humanities involvement is greatly over-egged.  I am not sure that any arts and humanities courses should be publicly funded.  There is very little evidence that they do any good.  All we get are high flown assertions to that effect

I myself greatly enjoyed my studies of Homer, Thucydides, Chaucer, Tennyson, Wordsworth, Hopkins, Goethe, Wittgenstein, Schubert, Bach and Beethoven etc. and still do -- but I can't see that I needed to go to university to acquire that familiarity

Labor has accused former education minister Simon Birmingham of pandering to "knuckle-dragging rightwing philistines" by blocking 11 Australian Research Council grants in the humanities totalling $4m.

Senate estimates hearings on Thursday revealed that Birmingham blocked $1.4m of discovery grants for topics including a history of men’s dress from 1870-1970, "beauty and ugliness as persuasive tools in changing China’s gender norms" and "post orientalist arts in the Strait of Gibraltar".

Birmingham, now trade minister, also blocked $1m of early career awards announced in November 2017 including a $330,000 grant for research into legal secularism in Australia and $336,000 for a project titled "Soviet cinema in Hollywood before the blacklist".

Two further grants announced in June 2018 were also blocked: "The music of nature and the nature of music" ($765,000) and "writing the struggle for Sioux and US modernity" ($926,372).

The grant projects were proposed by researchers at universities including the Australian Catholic University, the Australian National University as well as Sydney, Melbourne, New South Wales and Monash universities. All grants were independently approved by the ARC.

Labor’s innovation spokesman, Kim Carr, accused Birmingham of judging research on its title and targeting the humanities because no research in other disciplines such as science were blocked.  "He’s pandering to rightwing extremism in an attempt to peddle ignorance," Carr told Guardian Australia. "There is no case for this blatant political interference to appease the most reactionary elements of the Liberal and National party and the shock-jocks.

"These are grants in arts, culture, music and history which somehow or other in his mind are not acceptable … what is his research expertise to justify interventions of that type?"

Carr said that when the former education minister Brendan Nelson vetoed humanities grants in 2004-05 there was "outcry from the Australian research community".

When in government Labor instituted a protocol that blocking research required a special declaration so the decision was public, which Carr said the Coalition had rescinded.

Birmingham responded on Twitter: "I‘m pretty sure most Australian taxpayers preferred their funding to be used for research other than spending $223,000 on projects like ‘Post orientalist arts of the Strait of Gibraltar

In a statement the Australian Academy of the Humanities expressed "shock and anger" that the minister intervened and called for the $4m of funding to be restored.

The academy president, Joy Damousi, said Australia’s research funding system "is highly respected around the world for its rigour and integrity". "Political interference of this kind undermines confidence and trust in that system," Damousi said.  "The rigour of that system and the competition for funding means that only exceptional applications make it through the process.

"A panel of experts have judged these projects to be outstanding, yet that decision has apparently been rejected out of hand by the former minister."


Sunday, October 28, 2018

What California Can Teach Harvard

A group of Asian-Americans is suing Harvard with backing from the U.S. Department of Justice, which filed papers stating: "The record evidence demonstrates that Harvard’s race-based admissions process significantly disadvantages Asian-American applicants compared to applicants of other racial groups — including both white applicants and applicants from other racial minority groups."

This is a rare case where California policy could provide positive guidance.

The back story here is the dogma that all institutions must precisely reflect the racial or ethnic diversity of the wider population. If they do not, the reason must be deliberate discrimination and the only remedy is government action, namely, racial and ethnic preferences. This dogma ignores personal differences, effort, and choice and proclaims some groups "overrepresented." On this basis, the University of California discriminated against Asians, a group that had suffered decades of official discrimination in California.

Enter the California Civil Rights Initiative, Proposition 209 on the November 1996 ballot: "The state shall not discriminate against, or grant preferential treatment to, any individual or group on the basis of race, sex, color, ethnicity, or national origin in the operation of public employment, public education, or public contracting." Administrators and politicians attacked it in apocalyptic terms, but California voters approved it 54 to 46 percent. The disaster the preference forces predicted never came about.

As Thomas Sowell noted in Intellectuals and Race, declines in minority enrollment at UCLA and Berkeley have been offset by increases at other UC campuses. More important, the number of African-American and Hispanic students graduating from the UC system has gone up, including a 55 percent increase in those graduating in four years with a GPA of 3.5 or higher.

Proposition 209 did not mean the end of "affirmative action." Universities could still help disadvantaged students on an economic basis, but they could not discriminate on the basis of race and ethnicity, as Asian students claim Harvard is doing. UC Davis Medical School likewise discriminated against Allan Bakke by rejecting him in favor of lesser-qualified minority candidates. In 1978, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled 5-4 in Bakke’s favor.


25% of students say they were traumatized by the 2016 election, study says

A quarter of students found the 2016 so traumatic they now report symptoms of PTSD, according to a new study.

Researchers surveyed Arizona State University students around the time of President Donald Trump's inauguration in 2017, and some had stress scores on par with that of school shooting witnesses' seven-month follow-ups.

Twenty-five percent of the 769 students, who were an even mix of genders and races and socioeconomic backgrounds, reported 'clinically significant' levels of stress.

The most severe cases were seen among women, black, and non-white Hispanic students, who were 45 percent more likely to feel distressed by the 2016 run between Trump and Hillary Clinton.

Lead researcher Melissa Hagan, an assistant professor of psychology at San Francisco State University, believes the 'divisive tone' about race, identity, and what makes a valuable American 'really heightened stress for a lot of people'. 

In January and February 2017, psychology students at Arizona State were given questions based on the Impact of Event Scale, which is used to assess distress in trauma victims. 

Most (56.4 percent) of the students, who live in a state that voted for Trump, said they were not happy with the result - 20 percent somewhat dissatisfied, and 38 percent completely dissatisfied.

Meanwhile, 18.5 percent of the students said they were completely satisfied with the result, and 25 percent were somewhat satisfied.

In terms of how the election impacted their lives, 65 percent said there was no impact. Ten percent said they saw a positive impact.

But a quarter were so crestfallen their symptoms would be deemed a medical condition, severe enough to interfere with their work, social activities, and personal relationships.

White people were less affected than black and non-white Hispanic students.  Women were 45 percent more likely to be distressed than their male peers. Non-Christians were far more distressed than Christians, the study found.

The election was dramatic, controversial, riddled with an FBI investigation, Russian meddling, the 'grab em by the p***y' tape, and an unexpected result.

Polls had Clinton winning with a probability of somewhere between 70 and 99 percent, according to Pew Research. On the night, outsider Trump took key states Wisconsin and Pennsylvania as the map went red. 

The election also came amid soaring rates of stress and anxiety among young people, the generation who have grown up with social media.

Most of the students in the study said they consumed their election coverage via social media, which psychologists and pediatricians warn is usually the driving factor for millennial anxiety as it fuels extremist, angry pockets among like-minded groups.

Dr Hagan, whose study is published today in the Journal of American College Health, says that the social media factor cannot be ignored.

She also believes the shock factor - Donald Trump's win despite predictions of a Clinton sweep - took many Democrat voters by surprise.

She hopes the paper will shed light on the fact that, for some people, the election did 'constitute a traumatic experience' that may be interfering with their work and lives.

Dr Hagan conducted the study with Michael Sladek, PhD, of UCSF's psychiatry department, and University of Arizona psychologists Linda Luecken, PhD, and Leah Doane, PhD.


Challenging the Campus Rape Narrative in Australia

written by Bettina Arndt

What do senior university administrators chat about when they attend overseas conferences with others of their kind? Surely when vice-chancellors hobnob with American college presidents the conversation must sometimes stray to their troubles—particularly the costly business of managing the so-called "campus rape crisis."

So how come these smart leaders from the Australian higher education sector haven’t twigged to the dangers ahead? Ripples from the fallout of the campus rape frenzy on American college campuses have travelled across the world. Back in the 1990s, there were campus protests with furious young women brandishing placards claiming one in four students are raped. The alarmist 2015 propaganda movie The Hunting Ground was screened across the country, showing serial rapists preying on college women. By 2011, the activists had achieved their main goal, with Obama requiring all publicly-funded universities to set up tribunals for determining sexual assault cases.

So American universities got into the criminal investigation business, with lower standards of proof greatly increasing the chances of conviction in date rape cases. Such cases remain a stumbling block in the highly successful and much needed feminist push for justice for rape victims. Rape allegations are now treated far more seriously, convictions are more common and attract far higher penalties. According to the NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics, in my own state of New South Wales, numbers of sexual assault convictions have almost doubled since 1995, and over 50 percent of such convictions receive prison sentences compared to about 10 percent of other crimes.1

But in he-said, she-said cases, often involving intoxicated youngsters, juries are notoriously reluctant to send young men to jail, particularly when they don’t know who to believe. The American college tribunal system lowered the bar, requiring lower standards of proof, with the accused not protected by lawyers, often denied full access to allegations, and lacking other legal rights available under criminal law. It’s led to a steady stream of young men (and occasionally women) being suspended from college, their lives derailed by this "victim-centred justice."

That’s proved a mighty costly exercise for the American university system, particularly with a number of these accused young men and their families winning legal cases and receiving substantial payouts from colleges that failed to protect due process rights. Hundreds of lawsuits have been filed against universities alleging such violations. In most cases, judges have ruled in favor of the accused student and there has been increasing public disquiet about the unfairness of these kangaroo courts. In a 2016 ruling against Brandeis University, a US district court judge wrote:

If a college student is to be marked for life as a sexual predator, it is reasonable to require that he be provided a fair opportunity to defend himself and an impartial arbiter to make that decision. Put simply, a fair determination of the facts requires a fair process, not tilted to favour a particular outcome, and a fair and neutral fact-finder, not predisposed to reach a particular conclusion.

All of this has played out publicly on the world stage. Yet, despite all the warnings, Australian universities are cheerfully bounding down the same road. What is quite astonishing is that here they are doing in the face of solid evidence that the campus rape crisis simply doesn’t exist.

In August 2017, the Australian Human Rights Commission released the results of a million-dollar survey into sexual assault and harassment on university campuses, following years of lobbying by local activists. Designed to provide proof of the rape crisis, it proved to be a total fizzer. Only 0.8 percent per year of the 30,000 surveyed reported any sexual assault, even using the broadest possible definition including "tricked into sex against your will" and sexual contact with a stranger on the bus or train trip to university. In response, the activists immediately shifted ground, issuing alarmist warnings about high levels of sexual violence which was actually low grade harassment, including staring, sexual jokes or comments.

The results were in, but I was the only journalist writing in mainstream media that day to celebrate our safe campuses. My news story included data from the NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics showing campuses are about 100 times safer than the rest of the community for young women.2

Across the country, vice-chancellors kowtowed to the feminist activists with endless displays of virtue-signalling, promising to tackle the sexual violence with 24-hour help lines, sexual assault and harassment units, and sexual consent courses. I wrote to all our major universities posing a series of questions about why our cash-strapped universities are choosing to lie about the safety of our campuses, and risking scaring off Asian families from sending their daughters to study in this country. The result was endless weasel words from University media units—not one acknowledged that the whole thing is a farce.

The emperor has no clothes. This was the image that inspired me. Our pompous vice-chancellors parading before us, totally naked, whilst the entire university sector, including eminent social scientists, cowered in silence, denying the solid research evidence of safe campuses. That is what led me to embark on a campus tour, seeking out student groups to invite me onto campuses where I could discuss the illusory rape crisis and the related push for university involvement in adjudicating sexual assault. My background as one of Australia’s first sex therapists with a long history of writing about gender issues made this process easier.

The results have been pretty much as expected. My first talk, scheduled for August at La Trobe University in Melbourne, was suddenly cancelled when university administrators claimed it didn’t align with the values of the University. Following media pressure, the university backed down—but only after a conversation with one of the administrators who suggested they may need to offer counselling to students attending the talk. The event went ahead, despite protest demonstrations and a very noisy crowd of protesters bashing on the doors to the venue, shouting into megaphones and doing their best to drown out our discussion.

At Sydney University, the protests were far more alarming. Here, the University insisted on charging the student club hosting the event a security fee of nearly $500 for guards who had no authority to remove the aggressive mob of abusive protesters who blocked the corridor leading to the venue, preventing my audience from accessing the room and roughing up anyone who tried to get through. The escalating violence and abuse led the guards to call in the riot squad, who removed the protesters, allowing the event to proceed.

I’ve asked the university to take action against named key protesters for breaches to the University’s code of conduct and bullying/harassment regulations. An investigation is currently underway. Yet it seems unlikely that the University will act. Last year, the University’s own workplace disputes consultants recommended the key organiser of my protest should receive a suspension for misconduct because she had subjected an anti-abortion group on campus to all manner of abuse, including exposing her breasts to them. Yet still the University failed to follow through. Charges were dropped, without any explanation.

We are taking further action following up on the vice-chancellor’s decision not to fully refund the security fee. (Some was returned due to an administrative error leading to overcharging.) Vice-chancellor Michael Spence declared the guards had fulfilled their protocols, despite the riot squad being required for the talk to proceed. Sydney University has long been allowing a heckler’s veto to flourish on campus, whereby conservative student groups are charged prohibitively high security fees to protect them from violent radical protesters.

The whole fracas has proved quite a tipping point for community frustration over the failure of universities to protect free speech. All manner of eminent people spoke out, including former High Court chief justice Robert French, who warned that universities were risking their reputations by restricting speech on campus. They should "maintain a robust culture of open speech and discussion even though it may involve people hearing views that they find offensive or hurtful," he suggested. The newly appointed Federal Education Minister has been raising the issue with vice-chancellors, Senators are grilling bureaucrats in parliamentary committees, and there’s been much public discussion about the need for our universities to sign up to a Chicago charter.

The free speech debate is encouraging but it’s not my main game—which is exposing the false campus rape narrative and the related push towards university-based justice for sex crimes. It is proving mighty difficult to break the stranglehold of the activists silencing my attempts to call attention to this dangerous trend. Just this week, the student group hosting my next talk told me we couldn’t mention a "rape" crisis in a poster because it might trigger rape victims during their current exams.

Meanwhile, Australian universities are already caving to pressure to get involved in sexual abuse investigations. Last year, I spent eight months helping a PhD student at Adelaide University ward off a university committee which was investigating a sexual assault allegation from another student. I found a criminal barrister set to give him pro bono advice, and eventually the university dropped the charges but only after a long and stressful battle. That committee had the power to withhold the young man’s PhD unless he cooperated.

Across Australia, universities are introducing regulations to support such investigations, whereby the lower standard of "balance of probabilities" will be used to decide sexual assault matters. At UTS in Sydney, the committee investigating sexual assault includes students amongst its members.

How is it possible that all this is happening just when the Trump administration has announced changes to the tribunal system to wind back victim-centred justice and protect due process rights for the accused? Earlier this year, over 150 American criminal lawyers, law professors and scholars signed an open letter denouncing the victim-centred investigative practises which flourished under the Obama system:

By their very name, their ideology, and the methods they foster, ‘believe the victim’ concepts presume the guilt of an accused. This is the antithesis of the most rudimentary notions of justice. In directing investigators to corroborate allegations, ignore reporting inconsistencies, and undermine defenses, the ‘believe the victim’ movement threatens to subvert constitutionally-rooted due process protections.

Last year, a series of UK rape cases collapsed following revelations of deliberate withholding of key evidence by prosecutors and police, part of the same victim-centred justice. In the ensuring scandal which followed, the former Director of Public Prosecutions stepped down and it was decided that key rape and serious sexual assault cases should be reviewed. The Metropolitan Police have now announced that they are ditching their previous practice of "believing all victims."

The evidence is there for all to see. Our Australian universities are on a hiding to nothing by surrendering to the bullying tactics of a small group of feminist activists and agreeing to get involved in the criminal justice business. The sensible majority need to speak up and give them the courage to withstand this dangerous nonsense.