Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Meyer's Charges

If you want to read the letter from SIUC's general council, listing the allegations against Cal Meyers, who by the way has been a faculty member since 1964, it's here (Be prepared to twist your neck at an uncomfortable angle in order to read it). A couple of points stuck me as bemusing, to say the least:

1. The charges are supposed to be sexual harassment. Since when did smoking in Neckers Hall (the last point in the list of charges) become sexual harassment? Violation of university policy and state law, sure. Sexual harassment, I don't think so.

2. The first line of the last paragraph reads "This list is not intended to be a comprehensive list of the potential allegations." We don't have charges here, we don't even have allegations, we have POTENTIAL allegations.

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These sexual harassment cases have gone too far. I am a liberal and I oppose sexual harassment; however, there are far too many cases that involve only very minor incidents. For example, making a joking or kidding remark on maybe one or two occasions should not be the basis for firing someone or for a huge lawsuit. Sexual harassment cases should only involve ongoing, repeated, significant misconduct. I imagine that the university is scared to death to ignore these complaints for fear that it will be accused of being soft on or indifferent to sexual harassment. The laws need to be changed to make it just a little more difficult to proceed with these cases.
You can rotate the document in your view menu, at least you can on my Mac. Counterclockwise is the way.

This is a standard letter to CYA (Cover Your A..) a company sends. The law forces you to do this to prevent a legal finding of triple damages.

I'll do a little more about it in my blog. Good work digging up the documents.
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