We often hear about cases where men are accused of sexual misconduct, and society wants to label them guilty before they’re even brought to court. They’re unfortunately becoming more and more prevalent, and there seems to be little we can do to stop them.
In Texas, a male student who had been accused of sexual harassment committed suicide after the University of Texas at Arlington chose to disregard its own rules in order to exact punishment on him. The student’s father, a lawyer acting on behalf of his late son, is currently bringing a lawsuit against the school administration for violating his son’s Title IX rights.
Thomas Klocke, a straight male, was accused of writing homophobic slurs on a computer he was using during his class by a gay classmate. Even though the administration who investigated the allegations acknowledged that there was no basis for these claims, they still decided to punish Klocke.
According to Watchdog.org:
The accusing student, who is being sued by Klocke’s father for defamation, claims that in May 2016, Klocke made a comment during a class about “privilege,” and then proceeded to open his laptop and type “gays should die” into his web browser’s search bar. The accuser (who is not being named because Watchdog was unable to contact him for comment) claims he typed into his own browser search bar, “I’m gay.”
The accuser next claimed that Klocke feigned a yawn and said under his breath: “Well, then you’re a faggot.” The accuser says he told Klocke he should leave the class, to which Klocke allegedly responded: “You should consider killing yourself.”
The accuser claims he was made so uncomfortable by the exchange that he waited until the end of class and spoke to the professor, who allegedly told him to contact student support services. There is no documentation to suggest the professor was interviewed in the course of the investigation in order to corroborate the accuser’s claims. The attorney for Klocke’s father, Kenneth Chaiken, told Watchdog the professor never provided a witness statement, suggesting he was never asked what he saw that day.
The problem is, Klocke had a completely different account as to what happened. He claims that his accuser made unwelcome sexual advances on him, which he rejected by telling the accuser that he was straight. The situation suggests that the feeling of rejection may have led the accuser of making up the whole prejudiced exchange out of embarrassment.
The whole situation gets even more sketchy after that, since the accuser had a close relationship with the Associate Vice President of Student Affairs, who quickly became an advocate for the accuser. They were close to the point that the accuser even referred to her on a first name basis at times.
Even though Klocke adamantly denied the accusations, he still wasn’t granted a hearing. If the complaints had been compliant with Title IX procedures, he would have received necessary protections from the school. He wasn’t even told who his accuser was, and he was told he couldn’t contact anyone in his class about the allegations brought against him, leaving him helpless in being able to identify witnesses to corroborate his story.
Days later, Klocke committed suicide.
Based on the facts that have come forward, I hope his father sues the shit out of the people responsible…