If there’s a figure in the Trump Administration that is a lightning rod of criticism (outside of the President himself), it’s Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos. Some of the criticism (she doesn’t have an education background) is legitimate, while some of it (she wants to take away victims’ rights on college campuses) is as valid as a Nigerian prince’s email. It’s not secret Secretary DeVos has been pushing for changes to Title IX that would give accused sexual assault attackers the opportunity to defend themselves against allegations.
Enter our good friends, the American Civil Liberties Union. For decades, they have championed rules of evidence and due process. What did they do? They…sided with victims’ rights group and filed a lawsuit against Secretary DeVos to try to prevent the proposed Title IX changes. Yes, you read that right. The ACLU came down against due process on college campuses.
If you’re still scratching your head over this, keep reading. I have a lot to unpack here.
What the Left thinks it means – an organization whose sole purpose is to defend civil liberties against those who would seek to undermine them
What it really means – an organization whose commitment to civil liberties is spotty at best these days
Before we get into the specifics of the lawsuit against Secretary DeVos, it’s important to understand the ACLU isn’t what it used to be. Throughout much of its history in the 20th Century, it defended everyone from conscientious objectors to neo-Nazis. Their commitment to civil liberties was unquestioned, and justifiably so.
Even so, there were parts that would cause fans of civil liberties to take pause. Their commitment to the Second Amendment is weaker than Richard Simmons’ handshake. Their interpretation of the freedom of religion section of the First Amendment pretty much ignores the whole “Congress shall make no law” verbiage and comes down that any entity even remotely funded by Congress can’t express any religious sentiments (well, except for Islam because…reasons).
If these were the only issues, the ACLU could skate past any criticism. Yeaaaah, about that. There are a lot of issues beyond that. In recent years, the ACLU has decided to give up its commitment to civil liberties for everyone to whatever civil liberties the Left wants to promote this week. In other words, the ACLU has gone from the American Civil Liberties Union to Always Cucking to Leftist Underlings.
Which brings us to the situation with Title IX. Previous Administrations attempted to walk a tightrope between protecting equal treatment of male and female students and maintaining a common sense approach to enforcing that equal treatment. Then, President Barack Obama came along and decided due process on colleges campuses was best handled by letting people not in the legal profession hold kangaroo courts where the accused is presumed guilty even if proven innocent. But remember, President Obama is a Constitutional scholar and the smartest man to ever be President (without knowing what was going on without watching the news), so the Left thought it was okay. Besides, men are icky, amirite? How dare Betsy DeVos try to prevent colleges and universities from trampling on Constitutional rights in the act of sweeping bad press under the rug?
Although I have some misgivings about Secretary DeVos, she’s in the right here, and for the ACLU to ignore their previous stances in defense of due process shows how far left they’ve gone. Yes, there are scumbags like Brock Turner on college campuses, but there are also scumbags like “Mattress Girl” who invented sexual assault charges out of whole cloth and were rewarded for it by the same Leftists who tell us repeatedly victims tell the truth. The fact there is such a dichotomy in dealing with something as serious as sexual assault under the auspices of Title IX with the backing of a civil liberties group should have more people outraged than there are.
I’m sure no one from the ACLU will be reading this, but it has to be said: you have utterly lost your ever-loving minds (and I say this as someone who remembers when a couple of your members went to bat for NAMBLA). Civil liberties aren’t subject to ideological litmus tests; either you’re all in or all out. What’s truly scary is what impact this lawsuit will have on justice as a whole. Sure, your position is that relaxing the protections you say are in Title IX will undercut sexual assault victims and make them feel as though they won’t be believed, but there is another party in this equation that will definitely get the shaft if you get what you want. The falsely accused get railroaded under the current system precisely because their civil liberties are ignored. They don’t get to face their accusers, offer an alternate opinion of what happened, or even have an attorney to cross-examine the accusers (if they’re even allowed to represent the accused in the first place). At the risk of invoking the wrath of “whataboutism” from the Left, I would say you would be far less forgiving if this happened in a courtroom in, say, Alabama.
And that’s the problem.
When you base your commitment to civil liberties on what will get you more Leftist street cred, you erroneously conclude only the Left cares about civil liberties. News Flash for you, kids. They don’t care about civil liberties until they can find a way to get support and money for supporting it, and it seems you’re okay with it.
For the purposes of this point, I did a quick search to see how the ACLU responded to Senator Kamala Harris’ practices of mass incarceration of blacks while she was Attorney General of California. How many hits did I get? If you guessed 0, you’d be right! But I did find a lot of press releases praising her work in the Senate defending “protesters of color” from surveillance efforts. Just a bit of a disconnect there, kids.
The ACLU should no longer be considered the benchmark for the protection of civil liberties because they’ve long since given up any pretense of living up to the principles their name suggests they have. And with their recent lawsuit against Betsy DeVos, they’ve brought their own backhoe so they can bury the last remnants of their credibility.