Hazing Cases And Qualified Immunity Essay

1995 words - 8 pages

In recent years several high profile national cases have brought hazing to the forefront in American society as a real issue and a problematic one at that. According to recent statistics from the University of Maine, 1.5 million high school students are hazed each year. Of the athletes who have reported hazing, 40% have reported that a coach or advisor was aware of the activity. 22% report that the coach was actually involved in the activities. (Allan & Madden, 2008). Moreover, 36% of students say they would not report hazing primarily because “there’s no one to tell,” and 27% feel that officials or coaches won’t handle the situation right. In additional research a survey was conducted in which coaches were questioned about whether they believe that hazing goes on in their community; 50% responded yes, that hazing was in fact going on. Of the coaches who responded 25% admitted that they themselves were hazed in some form at a younger age (“InsideHazing”, 2010). In light of these findings, the question of who should be responsible is raised. Specifically, it brings up the legal question of “whether a coach has a valid qualified immunity defense to a student athlete’s constitutional rights violation claim when the student is involved in a hazing incident.”
Legal Issue:
Hazing is defined as “any activity expected of someone joining a group that humiliates, degrades, abuses or endangers, regardless of the person’s willingness to participate.” (Rosner & Crow, p. ). While most states have enacted anti-hazing legislation criminalizing the act of hazing, the application of these statutes is still quite rare. Id. at 277. Most lawsuits filed for reported hazing incidents are still reviewed under federal law claims for violations of constitutional rights and most often under the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendment . Id. at 282. Thus, coaches—acting as public officials—can often utilize the doctrine of qualified immunity to escape liability for hazing activities conducted by their student athletes. The doctrine of qualified immunity was created by the Supreme Court in 1967 to provide protection to public officials from harassment, distraction and liability so they can perform their duties. (Alan K. Chen). Qualified immunity is defined by the Court as protection of “officials from constitutional tort claims so long as ‘their conduct does not violate clearly established . . . constitutional rights of which a reasonable person would have known. The Court developed the following two-part test to aid in determining whether an official could be entitled to qualified immunity: (1) do the facts allege a violation of a constitutional right? (2) Is the right as issue “clearly established” at the time of the misconduct? Travis v. Stockstill, 1:12CV173 HSO-RHW, 2013 WL 5204669 (S.D. Miss. Sept. 16, 2013). Once an official or coach pleads qualified immunity, the burden then shifts to the plaintiff, who must rebut the defense and negate...

Find Another Essay On Hazing Cases and Qualified Immunity

College Hazing Essay

2145 words - 9 pages envision some alternatives. In many cases, those who are most vocal against eliminating hazing are those who are bitter and angry about the hazing that they themselves endured, but don’t want to eliminate this publicly. They expect others should be abused in order to gain “true” membership in the group. In this case, specific programs should be established to teach the devastating effects of hazing. A new sanction reduction policy has been

Hazing Essay

2708 words - 11 pages bonding of the initiation pulls them together in a very short period of time.The bond that is built can not be explained nor comprehended unless it has been experienced. Hazing done to maximize a persons potential, not to endanger them, can be an extremely effective method in teaching and molding an individual into a model of what is expected. Many people have died as a result of hazing since 1980, and it is these cases that give hazing a poor

Bullying, Suicide, and Bullicide

1312 words - 5 pages . In conclusion, bullying in many cases, is leading to suicide. Bullicide is a new, but common word in the Bullying and Suicide Prevention literature. Many teens are bullied during school, and numerous schools are not doing enough to prevent it. Hazing is also a major problem for schools, especially in sports. There are many ways to prevent bullying, and to also prevent suicide in schools, such as implanting a school wide program and training

Prosecutorial misconduct

2448 words - 10 pages exculpatory information from the defendant” (Lexis Nexis). According to the Gonzaga Law Review, the need for absolute immunity was eclipsed by events after Imbler due to a changing legal landscape. The assumption under Imbler was that ethics boards and commission would supply the necessary oversight; however, prosecu-tors are rarely brought before those boards and commissions. The concept of “qualified immunity” is an alternative to total

Bullying in the National Spotlight

3168 words - 13 pages was an initiation process and some may see it as a type of bulling or hazing. Rainer Martens (2012) discusses that bullying is an act of aggression by someone or a group with the intent of harming a person either physically or psychologically through hitting, threatening, intimidating, teasing or taunting. He defines hazing as a form of bullying created by a group to intentionally produce mental or physical discomfort, embarrassment, harassment

Immunity in the U.S. Court

1456 words - 6 pages in a later trial. This means that if a defendant is granted immunity in exchange for testimony about a crime that information cannot be used to incriminate them. In some cases this works in two ways. For example, if a defendant gives testimony about a murder cases and says were they threw the gun, police cannot be asked to search for the weapon to be used as evidence. However, if by chance someone independent by the government finds the

Why Fraternities Should be Banned

1137 words - 5 pages consumption and the use of paddles are also part of initiation.” The most frightening aspect of this information is the fact that these members do not consider any of these actions to be qualified as hazing. Currently 44 states in the U.S have anti hazing laws to protect students. Nevertheless, since 1970 there has been at least one hazing related death every year. Fraternities should most certainly be banned if it means the prevention of

Greek Life in Sororities and Fraternities

1130 words - 5 pages dangerous and in some cases lead to death it is highly frowned upon. Greek organizations nationwide and international are working hard to eliminate hazing from the Greek culture entirely. They do so with a strict enforcement of anti-hazing policies as well as informing every member of the rules and laws against hazing and the repercussions of hazing. The second thing my mother was concerned about was that I would be partying rather than focusing on my

The law and medicine

2066 words - 9 pages healthcare organization and one of its staff members. To fully understand and answer the questions required for this course project, I will analyze the information in an objective manner utilizing the facts as they relate to the law. The case information provided for HCA 302 students in the course project require several questions to be answered in regards to the nurses’ conduct, whether or not the nurse qualified for immunity, the level of

Problems of a Red Passport: How Diplomatic Agents abuse immunity- Criminal Jurisdiction and why it is justified

4098 words - 16 pages jurisdiction becomes a basis for his or her impunity. There is great utility in the concept of immunity, allowing for the free facilitation of diplomatic relations between States and also a safeguard for the diplomatic agent. However, "receiving states and the international community should not be obliged to tolerate personal inviolability and diplomatic immunity in cases of serious crimes such as murder, war crimes, and crimes against humanity

Government Power and Authorities

1264 words - 6 pages , The regulation of commerce, both on the international and interstate levels, Congress has the Power to establish currency and coin money, The power to establish post offices, and to organize, train, and arm a militia” (Understanding Enumerated Powers, 2014). #4. (Chapter 5) Explain presidential privilege and immunity, citing and discussing the most significant Supreme Court cases in the area. Once a person is officially elected to be the

Similar Essays

An Analysis Of Hazing In The Military

1913 words - 8 pages publicized cases of hazing date back to 1899, when General Douglas MacAurthur, one of the most decorated soldiers in U.S. history, refused to submit the names of cadets accused of hazing him during a West Point hazing scandal (Pershing, 2006). Other military customs with hazing aspects date back even further. The “Crossing the Line” ceremony, which celebrates a Sailor’s crossing of the equator, dates back to the Vikings and 800 A.D. Crossing the

Hazing In College Capmuses Essay

1198 words - 5 pages . Hazing changes the lives of every individual involved in one way or another. In some cases the individuals end up with emotional trauma and physically harmed, some even end up dead. Therefore, it is imperative that hazing on college campuses be more penalized due to its negative effect on humanity. It is believed that many organizations do not cease hazing because it is and has been a tradition for many years. Three in five students

Hazing...Growing Into A Nationwide Dilemma. The Pros And The Cons To Convince You That Hazing Is Not Right In Our Society

3040 words - 12 pages mental health or dignity of the individual or any willful destruction or removal of public or private property. ( qtd. in "Anti-Hazing Information" 1 )Some of the documented cases are absolutely appalling. Take the case involving the wrestling team from Sunnyside High School in the state of Washington. In 1992, a 15-year-old boy was allegedly sodomized with a mop handle. The boy was hospitalized for a week with bleeding and internal injuries. Also in

Ethical Hazing Essay

2759 words - 11 pages -hazing sentiment most valid and strong point for hazing being immoral or unethical is that hazing is illegal and that some cases people have been killed. This is certainly a strong element that is very hard to argue against. Yet, arguments for hazing run as strong and deep as those who oppose it. ARGUMENTS FOR HAZING Before we get into the flip side argument of hazing, from the interviews I conducted, written opinions and horror stories from the