The Social Contract

At its foundation, society is a contract. Citizens agree to give up certain freedoms and in return are guaranteed some kind of order. This contract differs considerably from society to society but one thing that is common among all societies is a functioning justice system.

The United States has an objectively fair system. This is not to say that it’s perfect, but most people agree it basically works. We are not here to critique the system, rather, we are here to show the danger of institutions circumnavigating the system entirely.

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Our system promises that anyone who is accused of criminal conduct is afforded certain rights. An accused citizen has the right to counsel, they have the right to be tried by a jury of their peers, they have the right to confront their accusers, and they are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

The last portion of that paragraph is of particular importance. A defendant is presumed innocent. Whomever is charging the defendant must prove that they are guilty, not the other way around. This is deliberately designed so as not to make an accusation equal to guilt, especially when the nature of the accusation is difficult to disprove.

Almost all universities in the United States are bound by Title IX. Though not the entire point of the document, its weight, for our purposes, lies in the fact that is has set forth rules and regulations that have made an accusation of sexual assault difficult to defend against. Title IX often results in an accused being punished without a complete investigation or in many cases a fair hearing.

In seeking to achieve the laudable goal of eradicating gender-based discrimination in the educational setting, the architects of Title IX enforcement have ignored or severely diminished those fundamental “processes” that protect individuals accused of serious misconduct. These “processes” are more than just rules. They are the standards that have proven across the centuries to protect accused persons from the disaster of an unjust determination of guilt.

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