D.C. college students don’t want Kavanaugh teaching on their campus, and they’re doing something about it

It’s been almost six months since Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh was confirmed, despite facing public accusations of sexual assault. But no one has forgotten the allegations against him—nor Christine Blasey Ford’s powerful testimony. So when George Mason University in Washington, D.C. hired Kavanaugh to teach, students fought back.

Newsweek reports that a group of students, called Mason for Survivors, is petitioning the university to cancel Kavanaugh’s invitation to teach a summer class at its law school. The group started a Change.org petition demanding that the university terminate the Supreme Court justice’s contract, hold a town hall with students to discuss the hiring, provide better resources for sexual assault survivors, and issue an apology, among other requests. As of the morning of April 4th, the petition has 2,345 signatures out of its goal of 2,500.

Elijah Nichols, the media co-lead of the group, told Newsweek that “the main problem we have with Kavanaugh is the allegations of sexual assault.”

"His policy stances are a separate issue, but Mason for Survivors advocates for survivors and the allegations are what we are most concerned about," he added.

Nichols also told Newsweek that the university is currently working on setting up the town hall requested in the petition.

In a March 27th post addressing the students’ calls to cancel Kavanaugh’s appointment, George Mason University President Ángel Cabrera acknowledged the criticism but argued that the faculty makes appointments “based on their assessment of the qualifications of the individuals.”

"I respect the views of people who disagreed with Justice Kavanaugh’s Senate confirmation due to questions raised about his sexual conduct in high school," Cabrera wrote. "But he was confirmed and is now a sitting Justice. The law school has determined that the involvement of a U.S. Supreme Court Justice contributes to making our law program uniquely valuable for our students. And I accept their judgment."

He went on to write that Kavanaugh’s hiring “in no way affects the university’s ongoing efforts to eradicate sexual violence from our campuses.”

Kavanaugh’s appointment is disheartening for survivors, and we applaud these students for taking action.

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