Eugene Volokh has a lengthy post questioning the wisdom of an Oklahoma state legislator’s proposal to define any sexual activity between a student under 21 and a university employee as “rape”.
I tend to agree with Eugene’s position—the position, incidentally, staked out in the most recent addendum to the Millsaps faculty handbook (I think; I’ll look it up when I’m at work tomorrow)—that relationships betwen faculty members and students they are currently instructing are inappropriate, for a variety of reasons that he details in his post. I generally also think that faculty members are just asking for trouble if they get involved with undergraduates—whether or not they are responsible for assessing their work—but I can’t see any good reason to make consensual sexual conduct illegal as long as both parties are over 18.
This post at BTD reminded me of a few news stories recently. There are cautionary attempts to get rid of license plates that say things like “Protect Life” with a picture of a baby next to it. If opponents of the plates succeed in getting rid of them, can we also get rid of the damned manatee plates on similar grounds? I don’t see any real difference in the two; both are value judgments (wholly normative) and equally objectionable, if either is objectionable.
Apologies for the light blogging of late. I’ve been prairie-doggin’ it lately, due to an avalanche of school work.
The Jawa Report has a Foothill College professor’s response to allegations of political bias in grading an essay assignment about the writing of the Constitution.
I also like Rusty’s response to student complaints that he gives too many F’s:
In fact, not a semester goes by where at least one student doesn’t accuse me of giving them an F because I don’t like their politics or have some personal vendetta against them. The fact is that neither is true.
The reason I give so many students an F is because there is no lower grade to give.
As the Blogfather would say, “heh.” (þ: Steven Taylor)