When asked by a senator who gave her the authority to make up her own rules, Catherine Lhamon smugly responded that the Senate did when it confirmed her. She had a point, that they knew who they were confirming and did so anyway. The Senate did so knowing that the administrative apparatus of the Department of Education had gone rogue, pushing Title IX to places it was never meant to go for reasons that had become sacred to a certain virulent strain of neo-feminists for whom neither fairness nor innocence mattered.
Women, the rationalization went, were sexually oppressed and they were going to end it, no matter how many innocent men were lost in the war. They didn’t care about the collateral damage. And the Senate, knowing this, confirmed Catherine Lhamon anyway. Who gave her the authority to reinvent Title IX?
By a vote of 51-50, the Senate INVOKED Cloture on Executive Calendar #414 Catherine Elizabeth Lhamon to be Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, Department of Education. VP Harris cast the tie breaking vote.
— Senate Periodicals (@SenatePPG) October 20, 2021
The Senate just did it again, and to the extent there was any doubt as to what Lhamon would do with her bureaucratic power her first time around, there was no doubt this time. Some Democratic senators, like Washington’s Patty Murray and New York’s dancing fool, Kirsten Gillibrand, have been honest about it in their dishonest way. Not only did they know who Lhamon was, but they applauded her for it. She would make sure “survivors” got what they wanted. She would make sure the accused invariably lost. Screw equal protection. Screw due process. They were all on board for the inquisition and Lhamon was their Torquemada.
But the others? The party of civil rights? The party of fairness and tolerance? The party that cared about the fate of black men, disproportionately falsely accused? Not one Democratic senator voted against Lhamon, and that meant Kamala Harris had to cast the deciding vote to break the tie. And she did. Who gave Catherine Lhamon the authority to break the law, ignore the Constitution, deprive (mostly, but not exclusively) male students of due process, of the chance to defend themselves against false accusations, against retaliatory accusations, of post-hoc regret, against lies? The Senate did.
It will be a little harder this time, as the former secretary of education did what Lhamon refused to do, used the Administrative Procedures Act to craft rules rather than impose by unilateral fiat guidance designed to assure the “right” outcome. But expect that it will shortly be subject to a new version of “Q&A” about how to interpret and apply the rules, and they will do everything possible to undermine them at every turn. It should also be anticipated that the rules will be subject to a new round of procedural evisceration.
On top of that, there is still a pending suit trying to undo the rules and the Biden administration has decided not to use its Department of Justice to argue for the validity of the rules. The government has taken the side of the challengers to its own rules, but then these aren’t Biden rules, even if Biden availed himself of a defense when Tara Reade pointed her finger at him that he would deny male college students. FACE tried to intervene in defense of the rules, after learning the Biden administration wanted to lose, but the court shot it down as untimely. Of course, when the suit commenced, a different administration was in office and there was no need for an intervenor to do the government’s work.
There are also decisions from circuit and district courts across the country holding that Lhamon’s pursuit of sexual discrimination against male students violates their constitutional rights, as well as a great many other things from Title IX to contract, express and implied. On the other hand, there are colleges and universities that do not now, nor have they ever, cared about the lives of innocent students destroyed in furtherance of soothing the shrieking “victims.”
College administrators have been no more bold when it comes to protecting the rights of the now-minority of their students, men, than they have been about protecting free speech, diversity of thought or intellectual honesty. When the woke scream, they quiver and drop to their knees begging forgiveness and the chance to be more obsequious. Some sought to circumvent the new Title IX rules by creating a phantom system that wasn’t to pursue a Title IX grievance, but their own internet code of conduct grievance, under the guise that this would allow them to be as disreputable as they wanted to be, as their unduly passionate students demanded of them. Or else.
And this is the campus climate into which Catherine Lhamon steps, the one she artfully crafted and which has fought hard to jump over the little speed bump in the road created by the new Title IX rules, the law, the courts and the Constitution. Lhamon will be lauded as the savior of fragile womanhood being constantly raped and sexually assaulted such that they are denied, majority of students though they be, their educational benefits. Catherine Lhamon will do what is expected of her, what she wants to do, what everyone knew she would do when Joe Biden nominated her to head the Office of Civil Rights of the Department of Education. She will do everything in her power to assure that no accused is given the opportunity to defend himself against false accusations. It’s not that she doesn’t know that there are innocent accused out there or false accusers. She knows. She just doesn’t care.
And who put her in this position? The President. The Senate. The Democrats in the Senate. Not one Democratic Senator was willing to stand up for male students, for due process, for the Constitution. Not one.