"“The secrecy about the firm is just shady": a Patrick Henry update
The March newsletter for Patrick Henry College’s Alumni Association began with a notice that birth announcements were temporarily suspended. Instead, it was to be a “more sober edition,” devoted to the fall-out from “Sexual Assault at God’s Harvard” a story I wrote for The New Republic in March about the mishandling of sexual assault cases at the elite evangelical school. In my investigation, I uncovered allegations that the Patrick Henry administration treated sexual assault perpetrators with impunity, discouraged women from going to the police, and blamed victims for dressing or behaving immodestly. Over the past month, the school’s administration, students, and alumni have responded to the story with an outpouring of public statements and online commentary.
Shortly after the story’s publication, Patrick Henry released a statement announcing the hiring of “a specialized legal firm” to audit the school’s policies and procedures regarding sexual assault and harassment. At the same time, the school maintained administrators “did not attempt to cover-up any sexual crimes” and “did not seek to blame women” for male students’ actions. “The fact is that the information provided by the key individuals at the time differs from the allegations now related in the New Republic article,” said the statement, which was read aloud during chapel. The student body responded with applause.
…Continue reading at The New Republic.