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The Dartmouth
June 21, 2024 | Latest Issue
The Dartmouth

Attacking Character is Unjust

The student or students who hung posters in nearly every residence hall yesterday accusing a student of rape evidently felt character assassination was the best way to voice an opinion.

This is not a reasonable tactic for debate. Though rape is a serious crime, to anonymously accuse a person of rape and leave them with no forum to defend themselves is wrong.

The posters provide no explanation or context for the attack. Students, teachers and administrators who see the poster are only told the accused student is a "rapist" and may simply presume him guilty. Even if the student is able to eventually prove that he is innocent, his reputation is permanently damaged.

This type of vigilantism is inappropriate. The College community has developed the Committee on Standards to discipline students who violate its policies. The judicial process of the College is designed to give all parties the fairest hearing possible.

The posters were not fair. If the people involved have grievances with the COS hearing process, then they should work to improve it instead of attempting to circumvent it completely.

This terrorism of a student's reputation is immoral and unfair. The Dartmouth community's integrity is compromised unless we can deal with disputes in a fair and civil manner.