Someone, be it the student judiciary, Duke University itself, or both, needs to step up and take control of the College Republicans situation at Duke University.
This summer, anti-gay and anti-Robinette graffiti were found on Duke’s campus. He also received death threats.
These events came after the student government ruled that the College Republicans did not discriminate when impeaching Robinette, who plans to file another case against the group along with eight other plaintiffs. This is a chance for the University to set things straight.
The issue has become highly polarized among both the UNC and Duke student communities. Claims of discrimination have been made along with claims Robinette was impeached for justifiable reasons.
Clearly, this is a very emotionally charged issue and rational discourse is being lost in back-and-forth accusations. Statements by both sides have confused the whole situation.
At a time when a third party is needed to adjudicate the dispute, both Duke and its student government cannot afford to be silent. Without attention, Duke’s problem could grow if the case moves to a non-student court or gains national negative media.
Duke commissioned a private review of the University’s treatment of the Robinette case. This study, while clearly pertinent to the current controversy, should be released to the public. Duke should release this report in order to clarify the accusations and denials of discrimination if the goal is to settle this issue and do right by its students.
The student government should live up to its ideals and represent the interests of the students. Refusing to hear Robinette’s newest case would not be settling the issue, it would be merely abdicating responsibility.
Duke must be proactive in addressing this divisive issue. The review should be made public and the judiciary should hear the case so the Duke University community can move on.