Incompetent Elected Officials Of The Month: The Connecticut State Senate

The Connecticut Senate this week approved a probably unconstitutional bill requiring all Connecticut colleges and universities to adopt the “yes, means yes” policy when it comes to sexual consent, similar to California’s cypto-fascist law. The bill dictates a completely unenforceable standard for sexual consent It was bi-partisan fascism, and passed 34-1. Sen. Joe Markley, R-Southington, was the lone vote against it.

According to the bill’s champion, Sen. Mae Flexer, D-Killingly,  it is “is redefining the definition of consent.” She explains that under the law, college students would be required to “say yes” or indicate nonverbally through “physical cues” that they are willing to have sex with another college student. And what “physical cues” would qualify? How about eye contact, and the kind of communications that we celebrate in the arts and literature? What about the “look of love” that Dusty Springfield sang about? Enough, Mae? How would schools enforce such a law? Cameras in every room? A panel of “physical cues” experts, watching every possible sexual encounter?

It says in part:

Each institution of higher education shall adopt and disclose in such institution’s annual uniform campus crime report one or more policies regarding sexual assault, stalking and intimate partner violence. Such policy or policies shall include provisions for: [(1) detailing]

(1) Informing students and employees that (A) affirmative consent is the standard used in determining whether consent to engage in sexual activity was given by all persons who engaged in the sexual activity, (B) it is the responsibility of each person to ensure that he or she has the affirmative consent of all persons to engage in the sexual activity, (C) the existence of a dating relationship or past sexual relationship between persons shall not constitute consent to engage in the sexual activity, and (D) it shall not be a valid excuse to an alleged lack of affirmative consent that the accused believed that the victim consented to the sexual activity (i) because the accused was intoxicated or reckless or failed to take reasonable steps to ascertain whether the victim affirmatively consented, or (ii) if the accused knew or should have known that the victim was unable to consent because the victim was unconscious, asleep, unable to communicate due to a mental or physical condition, or incapacitated due to the influence of drugs, alcohol or medication and, as a result, was unable to understand the fact, nature or extent of the sexual activity.

Affirmative consent is defined in the bill as an active, informed, unambiguous and voluntary agreement by a person to engage in sexual activity with another person that is sustained throughout the sexual activity and may be revoked at any time by any person.

Otherwise, the male is apparently a rapist.

Sen. Markley, the sole sane and competent Connecticut senator, noted that college students are not a special class of citizens who are exempt from the Constitution’s protections of freedom of speech, due process and the presumption of innocence for the accused, all of which this idiotic bill threatens. It dictates speech, you see. A college can declare that sexual relations between students were not permitted, as colleges often did when I was in college, not that they ever enforced them, but they have that right. They do not have the power to dictate what people say before or during sex, nor can the government demand that an institution do so.

This is what the “war on women” rhetoric has done to legislators in liberal communities. It has caused them to abandon basic Constitutional rights so that women can tar men as rapists and sexual criminals at will, claiming that what a reasonable male would take as consent was, in fact, not. It will also leave colleges wide open to lawsuits for violating students’ civil liberties, not that the students caught in this trap won’t be deeply harmed as well. It is particularly disgusting that the impetus for such laws—other states are considering them—has been fueled by high-profile false accusations, like the Rolling Stone attack on the University of Virgina‘s fraternities, or that of “Mattress Girl” at Columbia.

A poll last week suggested that a majority of Democrats and about a third of Republicans don’t agree with the concept of Freedom of Speech. This unethical bill, and the rampant political correctness insanity that it embodies, is consistent with that result.

 

27 thoughts on “Incompetent Elected Officials Of The Month: The Connecticut State Senate

  1. Would not affirmative consent, once given, have to be affirmatively revoked in order for a revocation to be valid?

    • These laws usually have wording where the affirmative consent has to be ‘renewed’ constantly throughout the act, on the auspices that consent could be removed mid-coitus non-verbally, and he should have to ask to know. (I use he because let’s face it, that’s what they mean.) There was a moderately hilarious youtube video of a young couple attempting to make out but practising affirmative consent, to try to make affirmative consent sexy. I have to say, I don’t think it was satire, but it showed like it was, because it was so awkward and forced.

      • Is there any proof that these laws require consent to be “renewed” constantly,rather than consent continuing to be valid until affirmatively revoked?

        • Yes and no. It may or may not be included in the actual law, but it is being sold as a feature of it by the media.

          ““Affirmative consent,” the law says, “means affirmative, conscious, and voluntary agreement to engage in sexual activity. It is the responsibility of each person involved in the sexual activity to ensure that he or she has the affirmative consent of the other or others to engage in the sexual activity.”

          Affirmative consent must be ongoing throughout a sexual activity and can be revoked at any time. The existence of a dating relationship between the persons involved, or the fact of past sexual relations between them, should never by itself be assumed to be an indicator of consent”

          http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2014/09/29/how-californias-yes-means-yes-consent-law-can-be-sexy/

          • “Can I touch your shoulder?” “Can I slip your shirt off?” “Can I undo your pants” “Can I rub up against you?”…. And it goes on from there. The counterargument would be that these laws have allowances for non-verbal cues, but then you’re back in the murky waters of subjectivity.

  2. Once upon a time, it was said that the Republicans wanted to control what you did in the bedroom, and the Democrats wanted to control what you did everywhere else. Good to know they’ve figured out how to correct that lone oversight.

    • “You can now have all the sex you want, as often as you want, with as many people as you want, all guilt and consequence free, so long as you follow this wee little list of carefully laid out guidelines, regulations, and precautions to make sure you’re not committing a criminal act at any point before, during, or after *the* act. You’re welcome.”

      Give them enough time, and the “sex ed” of the future will contain more legal education than anything else.

  3. Why does this apply only to kids in colleges? What about all the women in the rest of the population that need to be protected? Only women in residential four year colleges and universities need to be protected? What about people in public housing? People who live in homes whose loans have been purchased by a federally funded agency? Heck, why look for some sort of governmental nexus? Maybe local police should have to enact and report policies like these for all the citizenry of every town in the (and I am not making this up, am I?) Constitution State?

    • I think the reason that college aged incidents are treated as if they were more serious is political. They want young influential women to get on the train, and the best way to do that is to make it personal. Let’s face it, when you break down the numbers, a woman in a post-secondary education is the adult female demographic least likely to be effected by rape.

      But heck, why stop there? Are we concerned about rape, or are we concerned about the rape of young white women? Because if we’re concerned about rape, without qualifiers, by raw numbers prison rape makes incarcerated men the primary victims of rape, but we never go there.

    • They do this in college to get them indoctrinated. That is why so many Democrats are against the First Amendment. They were taught in college it was wrong. They went to colleges where it wasn’t in force, they had
      speech codes instead. Once they graduate, they wonder why they aren’t ‘protected’ by the speech code any more.

      The point of these bills is to keep women infantilized. Just as they have with speech and sexual harassment, they need women to be completely dependent on Big Brother to keep them safe. If women could make decisions for themselves, they might vote Republican.

  4. Freedom of speech is on its way out, to be replaced by the concept of “hate speech.”. Then again, it’s all about those evolving standards, right?

  5. I wanted to give a cynical “Welcome to the Land of Steady Habits”, but instead, I am going to offer a half-hearted challenge/request for clarification…

    How does this “affirmative consent” differ materially from regular old consent? Presumably, when a couple (how old-fashion of me to assume a couple…) have sex, there must already be some signal that both are willing. Schools have a duty to educate, so how is educating students that, yes, both parties must indicate consent unethical or even unconstitutional?

    Now, perhaps your objections are not so much to the proposal at face value, but to the fact that this does not seem to be merely educational, nor merely codifying of existing practice, but fundamentally and ambiguously introducing new norms…

    New norms, originating from a duly elected legislative body, that gives what appears to be judicial authority to institutions that never possessed such authority, that never possessed a fiduciary duty to wisely execute such authority, and that may have no constitutional basis to possess such authority going forward.

    Now, if this were a purely curricular mandate, I cannot see any problem with it. It simply boils down to, “Do not have sex unless your partner(s) agree…” However, the law is requiring schools to set up a procedure to adjudicate whether specific incidents were consensual. How does this differ from what schools and businesses already do?

    Schools already have conduct codes, codes of academic integrity, etc. Any business of repute would also have a sexual harassment policy. Is there any form of sexual harassment worse than rape? If a business can fire an employee for substantiated incidents of harassment, why shouldn’t a school be able to discipline a student for a substantiated incident of assault? Why shouldn’t schools have a procedure to get the facts to determine if discipline is warranted?

    Now, for such a process of investigating claims of harassment or assault to be credible, it must be conducted in good faith. I can easily see this process failing the good faith requirement, being developed in haste in an environment where respect of due process is wearing thin. This legislation is undeniably motivated in part by the widespread attention assaults on campus are getting, in part due to discredited incidents such as that published by Rolling Stone.

    Is what is unethical about this law the fact that it is adding new mechanisms of dubious intent and legality in a rushed manner to address a complex and vexing issue clouded in recent scandals?

    I hereby affirm that I am confused (but consent only to getting clarification)…

    • ” Is there any form of sexual harassment worse than rape? ” Maybe rape, followed by a bill for services rendered, or a negative performance critique, or “make me a sammich”?

    • Maybe they’re trying to find a way to substantiate the bogus claim that 1 in 5 women on college campuses will be raped.

      • 1 in 5 raped, I completely agree is bogus. Sexually assaulted in some manner; I have witnessed (and intervened in) enough incidents to not summarily dismiss the statistic…

    • However, the law is requiring schools to set up a procedure to adjudicate whether specific incidents were consensual

      There is no federal law that requires this. the DoE claims that Title IX mandates this, but the text of Title IX is silent on what procedures a college must use to adjudicate these claims.

      Schools already have conduct codes, codes of academic integrity, etc. Any business of repute would also have a sexual harassment policy. Is there any form of sexual harassment worse than rape? If a business can fire an employee for substantiated incidents of harassment, why shouldn’t a school be able to discipline a student for a substantiated incident of assault? Why shouldn’t schools have a procedure to get the facts to determine if discipline is warranted?

      Under the doctrine of respondeat superior, employers are liable for the conduct of their employees. An employee engaging in sexual harassment is effectively doing so on behalf of the employer.

      Students of a school are customers. Their conduct can no more be imputed onto the school than a taco stand’s customer’s conduct can be imputed onto the taco stand owners.

      that written, there is nothing wrong with private schools adopting a code of conduct, just so long as they are enforced in an even-handed manner.

      • However, the law is requiring schools to set up a procedure to adjudicate whether specific incidents were consensual

        There is no federal law that requires this. the DoE claims that Title IX mandates this, but the text of Title IX is silent on what procedures a college must use to adjudicate these claims.

        I had meant the bill passed by the state senate would seem to require such adjudicating, not currently existing law.

      • Under the doctrine of respondeat superior, employers are liable for the conduct of their employees. An employee engaging in sexual harassment is effectively doing so on behalf of the employer.

        Students of a school are customers. Their conduct can no more be imputed onto the school than a taco stand’s customer’s conduct can be imputed onto the taco stand owners.

        Thank you for the clarification.

  6. “Sen. Markley, the sole sane and competent Connecticut senator, noted that college students are not a special class of citizens who are exempt from the Constitution’s protections of freedom of speech, due process and the presumption of innocence for the accused, all of which this idiotic bill threatens. ”

    As you have reminded me on several occasions, the presumption of innocence is NOT constitutional, but protected by statute in some but not all, states.

      • Exactly. I’m inclined to say that not all men are rapists, certainly not all male college students are. And not all women are victims, certainly not all female college students. Most men and women will recognize the difference between consensual sex and rape without a “Yes, keep going” every thirty seconds.

  7. It’s nonsense like this that brings me back to the belief that we’d all be better off just going back to single-sex higher education. Someone brings someone of the opposite gender to campus outside approved events, you throw them out. Something happens off-campus, the institution doesn’t get involved and leaves it up to the municipal/state authorities to make their finding. Of course they can still suspend the accused while those proceedings are pending.

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