Quick Takes: Court Rules for UNC Women's Coaches in Harassment Suit, U. of Wash. Kicks 2 Off Crew Team Over Slur, Students and Religion, Gun Scholar Sues 'Freakonomics' Author, Brandeis Won't Invest in Sudan, New University Press, Dumb White Supremacists
Submitted by Scott Jaschik on April 12, 2006 - 4:00am
Women's soccer coaches at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill did not create a hostile environment for a former player even though they used vulgar language and discussed team members' sexual activities, a divided three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit ruled Tuesday in rejecting the player's sexual harassment lawsuit. "[Coach Anson] Dorrance never touched, never threatened, never ogled, and never propositioned Jennings," a two-judge majority wrote, adding that "no reasonable jury could find that Dorrance sexually harassed Jennings or find that Jennings’ other claims have merit." The decision upholds a lower court's ruling in a lawsuit filed in 1998 by Melissa Jennings and another player against Coach Anson Dorrance and other Chapel Hill administrators. The other player reached a settlement with the university in 2004, but Jennings continued to seek to have her case heard by a jury. The other judge on the three-judge panel dissented.
The University of Washington kicked off of the crew team two members who were found to have painted an anti-gay slur on the fence outside the home of another team member, The Seattle Post-Intelligencer reported. The student whose fence was vandalized told officials that he isn't gay, but had clashed with other team members because he missed a practice and had spoken out against the hazing of new team members.
Another poll indicates that religion is important to college students. Knight-Ridder reported that a national poll by Harvard University researchers found that 7 of 10 students said religion was important and 1 in 4 said they had become more spiritual since enrolling in college.
John Lott, a researcher whose work frequently defends gun ownership, is suing Steven D. Levitt, a University of Chicago economist who wrote the best-seller Freakonomics, for defamation, the Chicago Tribune reported. Lott, whose work has strong defenders but also many scholarly critics, objects to statements in the book stating that other scholars have failed to replicate Lott's work suggesting that crime is reduced by allowing people to carry concealed weapons.
Brandeis University has become the latest institution to adopt a policy barring investments with companies doing business in Sudan, where genocide is taking place in the Darfur region. Brandeis does not have any investments there now.
New England College, in New Hampshire, has announced that it is creating an academic press. The first director of the press will be Robert Ginna, a former top editor at Little, Brown and Company.
A group of white supremacists tried to protest an immigration seminar at the Hamilton campus of Miami University of Ohio, the Associated Press reported. But they showed up at the university's Oxford campus, where there was no seminar to protest.