Tuesday, October 02, 2007

That's Not Funny

If someone asked you all about your sex life, if someone kept pestering for details about your partner's genitalia, or how often you were having sex and with whom, and it wasn't your doctor, wouldn't you call that sexual harassment? According to UNC Chapel Hill it's not; it's just a joke:

Now a schoolteacher outside of Chicago, Ms. Jennings said that Mr. Dorrance's frequent comments to her and her teammates made her feel "uncomfortable, filthy, and humiliated." Mr. Dorrance, she alleged, frequently singled out individual players to find out with whom, and how often, they were having sex. He asked one player about the size of her boyfriend's genitalia, made comments to another player about the large size of her breasts, and asked another player if she was going to have a "shag fest" when her boyfriend visited, Ms. Jennings said.

The university has said that Mr. Dorrance's comments were "of a joking and teasing nature" that did not rise to the level of sexual harassment.

The case in which Melissa Jennings accused her coach, Anson Dorrance, of sexually harassing her for the above behavior has dragged on for nearly a decade. (Sometimes I think the justice system in our designed to discouraged women from bringing suit against their harassers.) And since the Supreme Court has now denied Dorrance's appeal, the whole affair is going to trial.

Of course, UNC Chapel Hill is standing by Dorrance. Why wouldn't you stand by the coach with the best soccer record ever? College athletics mean big dollars for schools these days, and if it means leaving someone in charge who treats women as his sexual toys, so be it.

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