UVA rebuked: Feds furious over rape case gag orders

In November 2004, then-UVA student Annie Hylton filed a complaint with the Department of Education claiming UVA violated federal law in its handling of sexual assault cases.


Four years after the college safety nonprofit Security on Campus filed a complaint against UVA for its mishandling of sexual assault cases, the Department of Education has ruled that the university has, in fact, violated federal law by threatening victims of sexual assault with punishment if they spoke about their cases.

The ruling has major implications for victims of sexual assault on college campuses across the country, according to the man who filed the complaint on behalf of then-UVA student Annie Hylton, now Annie Hylton McLaughlin.

"It means that victims can't be silenced at UVA or anywhere else," says S. Daniel Carter, director of public policy for Security on Campus.

UVA's handling of sexual assault came under fire in November 2004 when McLaughlin went public in a Hook cover story describing her alleged December 2001 rape in a UVA fraternity house by fellow student Matthew Hamilton.

When Charlottesville prosecutors declined to press charges, McLaughlin decided to seek justice through UVA channels and was granted a hearing with the Sexual Assault Board, a specialized offshoot of the University Judiciary Committee. Her experience with the SAB was "devastating," said McLaughlin, who couldn't understand how even though Hamilton was found "guilty" by the Board, he was allowed to stay at UVA until his 2003 graduation. Harder than that for McLaughlin: she wasn't permitted to say a word about her case, or she could face charges of her own from the Judiciary Committee.

UVA defended its confidentiality policy as a requirement of FERPA (Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act), a federal law that protects students' privacy. But McLaughlin and Carter argued that a later law–- the Clery Act, named for Jeanne Ann Clery, who was raped and murdered in her dorm room at Lehigh University in 1986– overruled any right to privacy afforded by FERPA in cases of sexual assault. The Department of Education agreed.

"Victims need the freedom to talk about the process as part of the healing process," says Carter. "Before, it wasn't just about sharing this publicly, it was about sharing it with anybody. A lot of victims were afraid they'd be found out and punished."

McLaughlin, now living on the West Coast, says she's "gratified" with the Department of Education's ruling, even if it took four years to arrive. It's not the only element of McLaughlin's case that took years to resolve. In August 2005, a Charlottesville jury weighed the evidence in a civil case brought by McLaughlin, asking for $1.85 million in damages. The jury awarded McLaughlin $150,000, but the battle wasn't over.

In March 2006, Hamilton filed for bankruptcy in New York. McLaughlin and her attorney, Steve Rosenfield, argued that Hamilton shouldn't be able to escape accountability.

"We don't think the bankruptcy laws were there to discharge this kind of a debt," says Rosenfield. Still, the possible cost of future litigation was steep, so Rosenfield and McLaughlin settled with Hamilton for $66,000 in June 2006, of which Hamilton will pay "around 95 percent." His parents' homeowner's policy will pay the remainder, says Rosenfield.

Even though the amount is less than half the amount awarded by the jury– and a mere fraction of the original amount asked for in McLaughlin's suit– Rosenfield says he's pleased.

"He'll be paying for some lengthy period of time– a couple of years," says Rosenfield. "Every single month that he writes a check, he will think about the consequences of his conduct."

Contacted through his attorney, New York based Gregory Messer, Hamilton did not immediately respond to questions.

As for UVA's Clery Act citation, McLaughlin isn't the only victim cheering the news.

"When colleges and universities treat the Clery Act with indifference, they do so at their own peril," says Liz Seccuro, whose own UVA rape case made international news after her assailant, William N. Beebe, apologized to her 21 years after he assaulted her in a UVA fraternity house. He was eventually convicted of a reduced charge and spent five months in jail.

"This latest news paves the way for more safety and security for innocent young people," Seccuro adds, "especially given the recent rash of campus rapes and murders of men and women."

UVA spokesperson Carol Wood says the school has received the letter from the Department of Education.

"We are reviewing it," says Wood, declining further comment.

According to Carter, the ruling carries no specific sanctions, but requires that "all necessary policy changes be made to bring the school into compliance with the Clery Act going forward." A spokesperson for the Department of Education did not immediately return the Hook's call, but Carter says schools typically have 90 days to prove compliance.

The Department of Education's letter asserts that some of those changes have already have been made.

Two months after the Hook's 2004 cover story, outrage at the school mounted and in January 2005, 400 students staged a protest at which they donned gags to represent UVA's silencing of victims. In response, UVA rewrote its sexual assault policy in the winter of 2005. The new policy allowed for students to share information about the disposition of their sexual cases, but recommended they consult a lawyer before doing so.

That caveat concerned Hylton.

"They're still putting some doubt into the survivors' minds," she said at the time, "about whether they can come forward and say anything about it."

Susan Russell, the mother of another alleged victim of sexual assault at UVA who had launched a website, uvavictimsofrape.com, and claimed more than 100 victims had contacted her to express their fear and frustration at UVA's handling of their cases, also wasn't satisfied with the changes to policy.

Like McLaughlin, she'd filed a complaint against UVA with the Department of Education in November 2004. In addition to claiming UVA violated the Clery Act with its sexual assault policies, Russell claimed the school violated Title IX, the broad set of federal laws that require equal educational opportunities for women. Among offenses she cites: that UVA violated victims' rights by not permitting victims to change dorm rooms after they'd been assaulted there, and that no one told her daughter, after her assault, that she had a right to take a medical leave of absence without affecting her grades. Most important, says Russell, UVA's sexual assault board used the wrong standard of proof in adjudicating its sexual assault cases– "clear and convincing evidence" when, according to Title IX, they were required to use the less stringent "preponderance of the evidence."

Russell is still awaiting ruling on her complaint, but she says she is "pleased" with the ruling on McLaughlin's forcing UVA to reexamine and adjust its sexual assault policies. "I always knew they were interpreting the law incorrectly," says Russell of UVA.

Carter says the Department of Education's ruling will help students not just at UVA but across the country.

"It's a tool that we can give victims if they are being silenced, to say to their schools, this is a violation of the law," says Carter, "and to get corrective action taken."

–Story last updated November 18, 2008 at 10:58am



ââ?¬Å?They’re still putting some doubt into the survivors’ minds,” she said at the time, ââ?¬Å?about whether they can come forward and say anything about it.”

Well maybe they should consult a lawyer just in case it turns out that it was just another drunken irresponsible brat who can't remember saying yes. Words can ruin peoples lives and just because you don't want to accept responsibility for making a bad decision does not give you the right to ruin someone elses life.

Rape is a serious matter both for people who are raped and for people who are falesly accused.

quote: "Rape is a serious matter both for people who are raped and for people who are falesly accused."

Absolutely! Like the local man who was recently arrested, jailed without bond, and subjected to DNA testing while being held without bond.... this DNA testing of course later proving his innocence. Can you imagine a rape suspect having to sit in jail while knowing the victim has positively identified him as the rapist? Ohh sure, they meant well, acting in good faith, relying on a positive ID, and all the other excuses used to justify a false arrest. But it's just another black eye for the local cops!

Young women win a victory for their freedom of speech and 2 local grown men join in to trash women and/or the local police. What the heck is wrong with this place? Where are the gentlemen? Hello?

Someone, you have to remember a victim called 911 and reported that a black male had just raped her. The police respond and round up a black male who just so happened to walking in the same neighborhood .... and the victim positively identifes him as the black male who had just raped her. As I said, the DNA taken from the black male while he was held without bond proved he was NOT the correct suspect. Who am I suppose to trash (your choice of wording, not mine) in this unfortunate incident?

Of all people, the police know or should know that eye witness identifications are wrong in at least 50% of all cases. Maybe the police should have slowed down and properly investigated this case instead of trashing this young man's name in the media for days. Has the young black male sued the girl who wrongfully identified him yet? If he hasn't, I sure hope he does!

One of the most recent and somewhat local DNA exonerations was Earl Washington, Jr. who was on death row for crimes he didn't commit. DEATH ROW!!! He had already served 17 years for allegedly raping and murdering a young girl in Culpeper, Virginia when DNA cleared him. A jury found that a state police investigator fabricated evidence that led Washington, who has an intellectual disability, to confess to a rape and murder that he did not commit. Washington was paid $1.9 million dollars by the State of Virginia. Well, technically it was your tax dollars that paid Washington due to sloppy and dishonest police work.

And if you watch the headlines nationwide you will see DNA is exonerating many people nationwide wrongfully convicted of rape and murder. And this comes after most of them have already served 15 to 20 in prison for crimes they didn't commit.

Bottom line, when you have police officers fabricating evidence and confessions, combined with victims wrongully identifying their male attackers, it's a scary world out there for men in rape cases!

How can something this big get past the feds for so many years? Think of all the girls that this could have and can happen to. What justice did they have back then? Absolutely NONE! It angers me so much that the school was so naive to have disregarded a federal law! The school board members should be put under the same pressures that these girls were. Let's see them squirm now!
Even though this entire article has a very good main point, I think that Sick of Local Rambos has a point. Men as well have to be careful out there. This is why everyone needs to use their heads and prevent VERY dangerous situations from happening!
Good luck Girls, and Guys.

I have no problems with freedom of speech, but until there is a conviction you had better be prepared to take responsibility for unproven allegations. There are different degrees of rape. most men accept this many women do not. Rape is not always rape. If you are a girl who goes to a frat party and gets wasted while wearing a micro mini and a thong, and a guy who is also drunk comes up and kisses you and you VOLUNTALRILY go to his room and have sex and then realize your mistake the next day and think he is guilty of a crime because you were drunker than him that is not RAPE. That is a stupid stupid mistake and depending on the circumstances it may be sexual assult that needs to be defined. When you call that rape you belittle REAL rape victims.

No one can prevent them from talking about it but if they say or print anything that is libelous or slanderous than the aggrieved party has a right to take them to the cleaners in court and then after that they can talk to anybody they ant with written proof that they are a liar.

It is called balance.

Correct, Ramblin Man. Except for the fact that a UVA student would probably be married, settled into a career, and moved away from Charlottesville by the time they could move the case though the court system. It takes 3, 4, or 5+ years to finaslly get a court date and get the case in front of a jury. As the plaintiff, I have lawsuits pending for wrongful events that took place back in late 2004. The jury trial has now been continued to July of 2009. And a lawsuit pending against a Charlottesville cop arriving out of the same events probably won't be before a jury until the year 2010.

Solr ..... and that sucks. You deserve your day in court in a reasoable amount of time. But for you to run around and say whatever you want about whomever you are suing can put you in a bad place. Your defendant deserves some privacy until he is judged guilty/culpable by a jury. Then you can post in on a billboard.

Thats all I am saying. The DUKE lacrosse situation is a prime real world example.

Ramblin Man, I understand what you are saying, but I disagree. If you sue a person or organization for whatever reasons, the allegations in the lawsuit are public record and are usually printed on the front page of the newspapers in any lawsuit with a significant degree of notoriety. A defendant in a civil lawsuit has no more right to privacy than the plaintiff in this civil lawsuit had when it was their name being drug through the mud in a criminal charge. For example, if Jane Q. Public alleges Joe E. Doe raped her, Jane Q. Public has no more right to privacy when Joe E. Doe is cleared of the criminal charge and sues her in civil court.

The main difference here is the fact John E. Doe has the right to a speedy trial by state code and has to be tried within a specified amount of time. But once John E. Does sues to clear his good name, it takes forever for the courts to hear the civil case. This is what needs to be fixed. Furthermore, once a person is found not guilty in a criminal charge, they should have an automatic right to have the criminal arrest record expunged. This certainly wasn't the case with the young lady who was found not guilty of leaving her child in the hot car not long ago. She still has a criminal arrest record even though she was found not guilty. This needs to be fixed too.

I am not disagreing with anybody. My point stands. If you accuse someone of a crime you had better be ready to put your money where your mouth is because if you don't you can be sued and lose everything. All UVA said was to consult your lawyer. The other side calls that intimidation, I call it common sense.

The systems makes allegastions based on evidence and that evidence is or will be public record. DAs and vixctims at press conferences are risking future liability by publicizing things that are yet to be proven.

You can accuse anybody of anything in an attempt to cover your own misdeeds, if you gat caught you should be prepared to pay the piper.

QUOTE: "My point stands. If you accuse someone of a crime you had better be ready to put your money where your mouth is because if you don’t you can be sued and lose everything."

OK, I agree 100%. We are indeed on the same page after all.

Law student happening by, felt the need to make a few remarks.
DA failing to press charges: means the DA didn't feel up to the task, possibly because the perp didn't leave evidence. It doesn't mean the accused isn't guilty.
People claiming Teh Scary Black Man did X crime: racism still exists, and it's still unacceptable. No argument here.
Police and prosecutorial misconduct: makes the entire profession look bad. I'd suggest we reconsider electing DAs.

Unfortunately rapists can frequently rely on defense counsel--if not the entire system--to intimidate their victims into either not reporting the rape or not working with the prosecution. Book I read for my undergrad course in human sexuality is still relevant and I recommend it: "Our Guys", by Bernard Lefkowitz,
ISBN 0375702695, 9780375702693.

Finally, one point I didn't see anyone address: without rapists there'd be no rape. Where I'm from, a drunk woman CANNOT say yes, and--lest there be any confusion--the default for any and all women is no. [Your partner constantly saying "Yes! Yes! Yes!" is ideal. Means you're probably doing it right.] Short version: If you find a drunk woman, don't rape her.

If you find a woman, don't rape her.

KA101, the DAs in Virginia are actually called Commonwealth's Attorneys. Even though elected, I think we have an acceptable DA in the city. I and my family would never vote for him again though, after he objected to expunging the records of a girl found not guilty in a recent felony trial. Once a person is cleared of any wrongdoing in a crime their criminal arrest record should be cleared too. (I will add that I do not know the girl, am not related to her, and have never spoken to her or any of her family members) And we have an excellent DA in the county now, a DA that will no longer let the county police run her office, a DA that will not tolerate perjury in courtroom on a daily basis. I can't vote one way or the other in the county, but my friends can and did. If the system is changed, who do you think should appoint these DAs?

Where I'm from a lot of women like to get drunk and have sex.

If she is awake and activley participating than that is a yes. If she is obviously obliterated then that is wrong.

KA101, a question -- so if my boyfriend and I have sex after we've both had a few drinks, he's legally raping me, even though we are both willing and eager? If this sex occurred in your state, and a month later he dumps me and I want revenge, I could go to the DA and have him charged with rape? That's pretty messed up.

In Charlottesville, you won't get anyone charged with rape. Every now and then a sensational case gets through, but for coeds at UVA, the community and the university turn a blind eye to this crime. The Commonwealth attorney's office rarely prosecutes because unless they can be assured of a "win", they won't take the case - especially if they can label the rape crime as "date rape" or "acquaintance rape". By using these labels, the underlying inference is that the woman just waited too long to say no.

The UVA Confidentiality issue has nothing to do with determining if a person is guilty or not of rape. It is a federal law that allows victims the right to talk about their case without fear of retribution from the university. For example, in the past, if a male student was found guilty of rape by the University Sexual Assault Board (this is an Administrative Board, not a legal hearing), the woman had to sign a Confidentiality Pledge (ie "gag order") agreeing to keep silent about the verdict. If she spoke about the case, the university then could bring her in front of an honor trial and expel her for disclosing the verdict of the Sexual Assault Board trial (not even the name of the individual who raped her). When UVA modified their Sexual Assault policy and removed the Confidentiality Clause, they added the line about consulting a lawyer as subtle intimidation to victims. There is no need for that comment to be part of a school policy document.

For more information on this topic and the efforts put forth by the students in 2004 to force change to the UVA Sexual Assault policies, visit www.uvavictimsofrape.com

Was the point behind the quiet clause so that more women could feel like they could come forward without it being broadcast in a public forum? Does the accused found innocent have to sign an agreement not to tell everybody that some girl with a vendetta falsely accused him? Does the University then bring her up on making a false claim? This rule was not about just protecting the Universities image.

If women want to be equal perhaps equal should include the responsibility to not get over intoxicated at a party of over intoxicated men who have heard she is easy.

Dear Ramblin Man,

Using "Intoxication" and "easy" in the same sentence infer that drunk women who get raped are getting what they ask for.

To answer your question, the University put a gag order on both women and men and prohibited them from disclosing the outcome of a case. So yes, an individual found not guilty was also held to silence. However, the entire purpose of the gag was to keep the public from knowing what a sham the Sexual Assault Board was/is.

The Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act is the landmark federal law, originally known as the Campus Security Act, that requires colleges and universities across the United States to disclose information about crime on and around their campuses.

Federal Law Mandates Compliance with the Clery Act
For more detailed information, visit: www.securityoncampus.com

Because the law is tied to participation in federal student financial aid programs it applies to most institutions of higher education both public and private. It is enforced by the U.S. Department of Education.

The "Clery Act" is named in memory of 19 year old Lehigh University freshman Jeanne Ann Clery who was raped and murdered while asleep in her residence hall room on April 5, 1986.

Jeanne's parents, Connie and Howard, discovered that students hadn't been told about 38 violent crimes on the Lehigh campus in the three years before her murder. They joined with other campus crime victims and persuaded Congress to enact this law, which was originally known as the "Crime Awareness and Campus Security Act of 1990."

The law was amended in 1992 to add a requirement that schools afford the victims of campus sexual assault certain basic rights, and was amended again in 1998 to expand the reporting requirements.

I have no problems with the clery act. It is a good law and transparancy is a good thing. I am merly pointing out that RAPE needs to be redefined and I am not inferring that drunk women are getting what they asked for I am directly stating it. But the difference between me and you is you is you think I am stating that she was asking for rape when I think what she was asking for is male attention. I am a 6'2" white male who is in great shape but you won't see me in Fifevile walking the streets at 2 am because society can only go so far to protect me. I need to practice prudential behavior. A woman should never get so drunk that she cannot say no. If she is passed out drunk then it is rape. If she makes a bad decision because she is drunk then that is a bad decision and not rape. Womens groups call anything a sexual assault. If you decide to go up to a guys room and do not tell him to stop then accept your mistake and learn the lesson. Tattoo parlors cannot be arrested for assault the next day. Its called personal responsibility and needs discussion.

Where I come from, NO means NO whether you are sober or inebriated.

Why did you feel the need to mention that you are 6'2" and in great shape? Why would society need to protect you if you are walking late at night? What are you trying to say now - that a random woman will accuse you of rape if you are out at 2am?

If a woman has the fortitude to report the crime and withstand the interrogation of Police and the Commonwealth Attorney, the case should be prosecuted. The problem is when the University Police apply the "he said-she said" theory and close the case without proper investigation. The victim is then further victimized by the system that was designed to protect her.

The 6'2" description was about being mugged and I stand by my assertion. If one practices irresponsible behavior then one needs to accept personal responsibility for their mistake... within reason. Even if the police arrested the guys that mugged me, if I keep walking down the same streets at two am then at some point I have to accept some of the blame.

If you are drunk and walk out in the road in front of a drunk driver he is at fault for drunk driving and manslaughter not 1st degree MURDER. (and the walking out in front of him with voluntary impaired judgement is your fault)

If you are drunk and go up to a bedroom with a drunk and you both have sex, and you regret it later (nobody said the word no)then he may be guilty of something but it is not 1st degree RAPE. That is why I said there needs to be a discussion.

No does mean no, but there needs to be a two second rule. If you are drunk and having voluntary sex with someone and change your mind and say no and he stops within two seconds he was not raping you. You were making a mistake and came to your senses.

Trying to perpetuate that drunk women are free to seduce you and change their mind later when their concious kicks in causes a lot of people on both sides a lot of misery. My assertions do not diminish the seriousness of rape it puts it back up HIGH where it belongs.

RAPE is a felony crime in Virginia. When articles address rape, they are addressing a crime, not a regrettable night of sex.

Rape is not about sex; rape is an act of violence. Women who have been raped know the difference. It affects victims, their families, and their friends. That's why I have said on my website that it is a life altering experience.

If a person is found guilty of committing rape by a student tribunal, why aren't they sanctioned and/or expelled from the university? One reason is because of attitudes such as yours - that women cry rape to get back at a guy. No woman would put herself through that hell just to taint a guy's reputation. She reports the rape to the police because a crime has been committed. The trauma she has experienced as a crime victim has changed her life forever.

If you are familiar with a man who has been arrested for rape at UVA, I'd love to hear about it. The UVA Police are lax at investigating these crimes; I know of no one they wrongly arrested for committing sexual assault (or 1st degree rape as you call it). Also, I know of not one case in seven years where a student has been expelled for committing rape or being accused of rape. However, students have been expelled for cheating.

Have you ever spoken with a woman who has been raped? I guarantee you, that discussion will open your eyes forever.

My eyes are open and I am ok with the death penalty for premeditated rape. I understand that there is a problem with sexual abuse on campus and that the University wishes it would go away. None of that changes the FACT that under the Constituion YOU cannot simply accuse ME of a crime without corraborating evidence. Take the Duke Lacrosse players. Look at their lives and look at the number of people who say that maybe they should not have hired strippers for the party. I bet even though they were falsely accused they won't be hiring any strippers for awhile.
This issue needs discussion because women need to accept some responsibility for getting themselves into a lot of these situations. Women have the support of men when it comes to rape and even assault. We understand the trauma and it is an insult to accuse us otherwise.

My point is that if you want the problem solved then you need a forum that establishes responsibilities on all parties FIRST. Once you have a consensus then you will have progress. So long as women think that every ass grab in a club is rape there will be no progress.

quote: "RAPE is a felony crime in Virginia."

Susan, serious question, is there any state where rape isn't a felony?

I would hate to think it's not a felony in all 50 states.

quote: "...police are lax at investigating these crimes..."

Nationwide, they all have become pretty lax in properly investigating any crime. The key word being PROPERLY. It didn't surprise me at all when they grabbed the first black male "suspect"in sight during the local rape a year or so back in the Fry's Spring neighborhood. The proper way to have conducted this investigation was to detain the suspect for questioning and put him in at least a photo lineup for the victim to identify. I'm not sure which is worse, being raped or being wrongfully accused and jailed without bond. With the current sloppiness in investigations, the Masistrate's Office rubber stamping anything brought before them, and being jailed without bond -- there is no more "innocent until guilty" in this country. A man is guilty until he proves his innocence. In the rape case I speak of, the DNA proved his innocence after he had already been jailed without bond and publicly humiliated beyond belief in the local media.

Dear Ramblin Man,

My daughter's rapist did premeditate the rape. He wasn't arrested by the prestigious UVA cops because the cop conducted an unprofessional and sloppy investigation. The death penalty? I would rather he apologized and did some jail time, not continue to roam the lawn and rape other unsuspecting females.

Dear Sick of the Local Rambos,

What do you say when there is corroborating evidence and the police do nothing? Fifty two reported rapes at UVA in one year and not one arrest or expulsion means someone is not doing their job. The local police do not have jurisdiction over UVA dorms - the campus police must be the ones to recommend arrest and they won't for fear of bad publicity. The Duke boys proved their innocence and were given millions of dollars in damages. The DA lost his job. The system worked. What about the rapists that continually get away with their deviant behavior? That's why a website like mine exists and why UVA should be fined for their failure to comply with federal law.

quote: "Fifty two reported rapes at UVA in one year and not one arrest or expulsion means someone is not doing their job."

First time I have actually heard figures that high. But even if it was only 5 rapes with no arrests, it's 5 too many.

Corroborating evidence? Don't the victims go to the hospital to be examined so any and all evidence can be preserved?

I dont know what to tell you. It's been my experience the Virginia State Police won't investigate other law enforcement agencies unless there's a special request made by the Governor, a police chief or a sheriff. Why won't the State Attorney General's office look into any of this? I agree with you, there's way too much being swept under the rug for fear of bad publicity, that's a given. What about the FBI?

Corroborating evidence - got it.

State Attorney General's office won't look into it because if the university were sued, they'd be responsible for the University's legal defense. I have letters of sympathy from the Governor and Senators and Congressional rep. All feel bad, but explain they are limited in what they can do since UVA is a state funded school.

Local & State police - no jurisdiction. UVA won't turn over jurisdiction and can't be forced to. Already went down that path.

FBI. It's just rape to them. No jurisdiction.

The only person who can do something is Albemarle Commonwealth Attorney. Funny how Lunsford and Camblos used the UVA cases in their debate forum, but now that the election is over, so is the concern for victims.

The only people who can bring change is the students. They are paying for an education, not to become victims of a crime. The Silent Protest shocked Casteen into action in 2005. Maybe a few more protests are needed to catch his attention on the way the Police have mishandled these cases.

If you cannot have sex with someone unless they are drunk enough to say yes, you should not be having sex. That is rape. Live with the consequenses.

Please be a man and stop blaming women for your bad choices. Just becasue you were too drunk to remember her saying "no" does not mean you are not a rapist.

If your drinking allows you to be a rapist, then don't drink.

ArmyVet...I couldn't have said it better myself.

Thank you, thank you...

Army vet... If you need someone to drink enough to lower their standards to enjoy having sex with you the that is not rape.

There are a lot of men who have to get looped in order to go home to their wives to give them sex.. these men are not victims of rape.

Women drink by choice and lots of them do it with the intention of overcoming their inhibitions. That is the REAL world. The definition of rape needs discussion as to its degrees. Once this is established then you can decide a better way of dealing with it.

If every person who ever had sex drunk was guilty of rape 90% of us would be in jail.

None odf this is meant to denigrate Susan's situation. In fact I think the discussion needs to take place to help others in the future.

I am not advocating the current situation.

I’ve been looking at this post trying to decide on a response for more than a week now. At one level the discussion is over, and for that I ought to let it lie, but the last words here are so... appalling, that I can’t.

Ramblin Man: If you ââ?¬Å?need someone to drink enough to lower their standards to enjoy having sex with you,” that is rape. Willing consent is the difference between rape, and not rape. Not force, not threats of violence, not any other rationale you might come up with to justify not calling rape for what it is; rape.

It’s not a question of degree, any more than someone being in a poor part of town makes a mugging justified. No one asks to be mugged, so no one ââ?¬Å?deserves” it. Trying to perpetuate the fact that men aren’t responsible for the rapes the commit is the problem. There is no need to discuss the, ââ?¬Å?degrees” of rape. Consent isn’t something one can obtain from the impaired.

Want to avoid being charged with rape? Don’t do it. If you can’t wait until she’s sober, then you have the problem. Get her number and go home. If she’s interested, she’ll pick up the phone, and you can go out and get some coffee and have sheet-destroying, neighbor-infuriating, cat-terrifying sex when you are both sober and it will be better for you, better for her; and there won’t be any worries about the cops knocking on your door and saying they have a criminal complaint, and you need to clear up a few things.

Because, all your posturing means is... you want to be allowed to rape women. You want to be able to say, ââ?¬Å?she asked for it.” You want to be allowed to go out and get drunk, and have no worries, but to be able to say, ââ?¬Å?she should have known better.”

You want to perpetuate privilege, and the privilege you’re asserting is that you are entitled to rape women.

It’s just that simple.


I find Ramblin Man's comments a bit surprising myself, but I don't think he was saying he wanted to justify rape. I think he was trying to excuse the poor judgment of drunk males.

I do think it behooves us to raise our daughters to stay away from situations like that, because it's better to just not have it happen at all. Better our own daughters stay sober enough to use good judgment themselves. After all, even if drunkenness makes them more willing, obviously they didn't really want to do it themsleves in the first place.

The ruling was an outstanding one, and will impact other campuses all throughout our society. UVA is not the only institution with these problems, and the concept that ANYONE has to remain silent on a crime like that makes me wonder why anyone in this country somehow thinks we are better than the extremists we are supposedly spending billions of dollars to fight. How much better than the Taliban are we? How much better are Christians.

Well, we just took a positive step forward.

Pat is a neighbor of mine in Mathews (not Chesapeake - you got that wrong). I want to tell you that she is very down to earth and has a kind, compassionate soul. She NEVER puts on "airs" - is always the "just a neighbor" type person. She is someone you can trust.

P. Buckley Moss is one of the most geniune, warm, friendly and giving individuals I have met. Along with her love for art, she has a love for children, those with learning disabilities, along with children whom are abused and neglected. I serve as the Program Director for the Greene County Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) program in Xenia, Ohio. Pat went beyond what we ever imagined to make our fall fundraiser a huge success which included her attendance to this event! What a special treat it was for us. Pat is well respected in our area for not only her magnificient art, but her loving and caring soul. This is one "SPECIAL" lady!

Whatever . . . .

I bought a print 25 years ago and can't seem to find out name. I love my print but can find it in collection. It,s a barn in a circular print with tree taking forfront of picture. I love it, just had it reframed. Please get back to me with NY INFORMATIO. tHANK YOU
BONNIE hazlett

I enjoy Ms Moss's works. Whatever happened to her second husband Malcolm?

Must sell my treasured lithograph 'The Sargents' 1989, signed and numbered... 16"x37" double matted in mahogany frame, framed by one of Ms. Moss' original framers.

I would like to contact Pat to validate some family information. Please pass my e-mail address to her and ask that she please respond.

Who are all these clueless people who think websites have someone sitting there waiting to help them get in touch with their idols or answer other stupid questions? Oh, that's right, people who collect crap art! As if they still had to prove they are morons even with worthless "investments' hanging on their walls.