The Weaponization of Title 9

Ryan Calvert

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Tucker Center affiliated scholar Kent Kaiser, Ph.D. paid the Minnesota Students for Liberty a visit on Tuesday February 12th for a presentation regarding the weaponization of Title Nine. The U of M grad opened by thanking those in attendance and reiterating the general terminology found in Title Nine. 

The small MSL meeting, held in a conference room at the Coffman Student Union was stocked with pizzas, pop, cookies, and puzzled faces as Kent slowly shifted from his praise of the Reagan administration (implemented Title Nine) to an underlying annoyance directed at the Obama Administration. The subject of this annoyance was the reinterpretation of the law to move the majority of its focus from equality in sports across genders, to preventing and punishing sexual assault. 

“This was no small mistake” said Professor Kaiser, he later showed that it was rather a deliberate act to undermine law enforcement systems and place overarching bureaucracies in all of the 4,200 higher institutes of learning in the United States of America. Kent reached this synopsis by carefully outlining how the “Dear Colleague” letter, written and sent by the Obama Administration, took too much federal power into its own hands. This was done by pulling a law that was doing so much good prior, way out of its jurisdiction and into an entirely different area of social issues. Kaiser went on to illustrate how the main goal of this political move was to help put an end to sexual misconduct among college students by using many examples he had heard through his various university connections. 

The examples he shared all proved that this policy scared universities more than it motivated them. Since federal funding for universities is so large, any threat to lose it would be catastrophic to the infrastructure they all spent so long building up. In addition, Obama’s listed consequences were so substantial, the bureaucratic systems put in place to deal with the new definition of sexual misconduct deemed almost every accusation guilty without giving the accused any chance to speak on their own behalf. 

Kaiser went on to list further examples of what this policy has done to ruin many young males’ educational experience in the present, but with a new administration there is hope for the future.

In wrapping up his speech, the Tucker Center affiliate scholar motivated the Students for Liberty by informing them that Trump’s administration is in fact working to correct this issue. It is hard to reverse a policy that has already been interpreted into law; especially after the sedimentation of the bureaucracies in most United States Universities, but as more and more people come to recognize this as an issue, it will be easier to uproot and correct.

This potential progress relieved the small Coffman conference room but ending there only incited more inquiry from Kent’s audience.

“How can people not see what this is doing?” was the first question the speaker directed his attention.

His response in short, was that it is easy to think you’re doing your job the right way, if it is the only way you’re allowed to do it. 

This further entrenched the point that this policy is doing more bad than it is good and that scare tactics are not the way to push an agenda into higher education institutions.