Commissioner Kirsanow, as usual, makes excellent points. I testified before the Civil Rights Commission last Friday on this issue, specifically whether there should there be a federal law against student-on-student “harassment” on the basis of sexual orientation. The basic point I made was that of course bullying of any kind is bad, but that getting the feds involved here is also a bad idea.
Everyone agrees that it is wrong for one student to beat up another student on the basis of sexual orientation, or any other reason for that matter. But the question is why bullying and harassment on the basis of sexual orientation should be singled out for special federal protection, especially when there are difficult line-drawing issues here — e.g., if one student tells another that gay sex is a sin, is that “harassment”? — that should not be left to federal bureaucrats in the Obama administration, who will put us on a road to speech codes, sensitivity training, and the like.
And I suspect that the Obama administration’s interest in this topic is at least partly political: It will appease part of its base; it is easy to be against bullying; and it is less complicated for this administration than, say, figuring out what to do with the economy or in Libya.
One last point: If federal bureaucrats can twist the meaning of “sex” in a statute into “sexual orientation,” as they are doing, they are certainly capable of defining “harassment” to mean just about anything.