New Knot in Civil Rights Tug-of-War

The U.S. Department of Education recently inverted a strategy it tried in 1975 to cut back on its work enforcing civil rights laws, including Title IX. Public outcry from ¬†organizations for minorities, women, and the disabled — plus a supportive court ruling — forced federal officials to back off in 1975. Will it today? Historically, the Education Department’s Office for Civil Rights has used two approaches to enforce civil rights — investigating individual complaints of discrimination, and broader “compliance reviews” of an educational institution as a whole. Compliance reviews may be scheduled any time, or can arise from complaints. In […]

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Title IX critics huddle up for special treatment

When I read complaints that Title IX enforcement goes too far in dealing with sexual assault on campus, I think of football. Not because this topic is a political football being tossed around in the court of public opinion, though there’s that. In the history of Title IX, today’s complainers of government “overreach” in dealing with sexual assaults have a lot in common with college football teams and other men’s sports, but especially football. What they want, it seems, is for people to realize that they’re special, and that they deserve special rules. The government more than once has bent over backwards […]

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