Georgetown, "Discrimination," "Harassment," and "Political Affiliation"

Georgetown should be aware of one thing when considering whether Tweets made by faculty members will result in “discrimination” and “harassment.” D.C. has a ban on employment discrimination that is based upon “political alignment.” However, this term can only refer to being a member or endorser of any political party. The policy also prohibits discrimination in educational programs due to political affiliation. Georgetown’s Antidiscrimination Policy covers not only political affiliation but also other characteristics.

Georgetown could interpret its policy on harassment and discrimination as prohibiting certain tweets which are offensive to racial groups. I believe it would apply those same rules to any tweets that might be offensive to anyone who belongs to, endorses or supports any political party. I do not believe the policies should have to be interpreted in this way. In particular, I don’t believe the Ilya Shapiro Tweet should be considered as violating these policies. If they were to be interpreted as such, it would need to include political party and religion as well as race, gender, or sexuality.

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