In his weekly address today, President Obama called for the federal government to take a role in preventing sexual assaults on college campuses. The end goal is admirable, but this is absolutely not the job of the federal government! Mr. Obama seems to think that everything that might be wrong in the US needs federal intervention. But preventing sexual assault – on campus or anywhere else – is the task of local law enforcement and education groups.
There are usually groups on college campuses that hold educational campaigns about assault. Most campuses have campus escorts or shuttle service that can take students from place to place in a safe manner. The information may or may not get into people’s minds and hearts, and students may or may not avail themselves of the safety programs. But federal money (with all its accompanying regulations and red tape) is not going to change that.
The President needs to focus on things where the federal government can actually help or bring change. (A few suggestions: eliminate duplicate government programs [GAO has identified many] to bring spending under control, urge the Federal Reserve to change the monetary policy that is keeping Americans’ savings stagnant, curb the federal deficit so other nations will continue to invest in the US dollar.) Each community can judge the specific circumstances that need changing to address sexual assault in their midst. And the US Constitution clearly says the federal government should stay out of matters that can be dealt with by the states (and by extension, local governments).