Dec 102002
Authors: Collegian Editorial Board

Parties are a part of college.

Football prospects, as well as other students, often decide on what school to choose based on the atmosphere.

Parties are often used to convince football recruits to attend a university. Parties are often thrown for the very specific purpose of showing recruits a good time, which might help convince the recruit to commit to the school.

A woman who claims to have been raped at a University of Colorado party on Dec. 7, 2001 where recruits were invited is suing the university. The lawsuit includes an unspecified amount of damages and changes in CU’s policy regarding these parties. She also wants CU to adopt zero-tolerance recruiting standards that mandate curfews, adult supervision at recruiting activities and automatic expulsions for players who violate sexual harassment policies.

The woman said the university promotes an atmosphere of indifference about recruits and players accused of sexual assault and harassment. Also, she said the players were under the assumption that they were “guaranteed” sex from women who came to the party.

This entire situation is appalling and is terrible for CU and all universities. But there is not much CU could have done to avoid this situation.

These students are all adults and responsible for their own actions. Curfews and adult supervision, or the lack thereof, is not the root cause of the problem.

The problem is bad people doing bad things. The only thing that can really be done is to punish these people for their crimes.

This issue is separate from the university, and has more to do with individual criminals committing criminal acts. The only reasonable claim this woman has is for CU to expel these criminals. That should happen as expeditiously as possible and they should also face charges.

In addition, women attending these functions should be more aware of what is going on. This woman said the atmosphere was one where the players expected to get sex. If she knew this, why did she stay?

That borders on blaming the victim for sexual assault, which is not the intent here. But realistically, people should always be aware of their surroundings and how to prevent themselves from harm. Remove yourself from a situation that poses a potential risk. This woman did not do that, and that isn’t necessarily CU’s fault.

 Posted by at 5:00 pm

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