Monday, November 26, 2018

John Jay College: Professors facing allegations on Drug Sales and Sexual Misconduct (2018)


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  John Jay College of Criminal Justice is a well respected college in the city of New York. Founded in 1964, the now considered “Senior College” of New York has proven to become an international leader in educating students in their justice program. With a campus that has over 15,000 enrolled, you will always see a new face, giving it is one of New York’s most diverse campuses.The College is equipped with 1,100 full-time and part-time faculty. Including two Pulitzer Prize winners, seven Distinguished Professors, three Presidential Scholars. (John Jay College) 

The Controversy

It came with great disbelief to the New York City community when they had learned about the scandal at John Jay College. Four professors of the college had been accused of committing some serious charges. Those included were Barry Spunt, an associate sociology professor and former chair of that department; Anthony Marcus, a professor and former chair of the anthropology department; Ric Curtis, a professor and former chair of the anthropology department and former interim chair of the department of law and police science.

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Four Professors Accused
An adjunct professor also stands accused. According to interviews conducted with the New York Post, the accusers had stated "the charismatic CUNY profs targeted them as vulnerable undergraduates and lured them into their pot-smoking circle of acolytes, only to sexually assault them and attempt to have them sexually service professors at other colleges — and worse.” (New York Post) According to the two accused, Ric Curtis had been the ring leader of the group, he had held court in "The Swamp" a secluded seventh floor of a building on campus. In this "Court" it was stated that one of the victims was quoted saying the alleged Curtis encouraged her to have sex with his academic colleagues, including a professor who was being recruited as a department head. Curtis, the alleged ringleader, had many encounters with drugs, not only did he research them, but he ended up selling them as well. A women by the name of Naomi Haber, who is 24 years old, alleges Anthony Marcus, the former chair of the anthropology department. She claims that Marcus violently raped her when she was a 21-year-old sophomore after a boozy night out at an academic conference in Washington, D.C. in 2015. It was stated she had waited to say anything about it because simply, it was traumatizing, she had just wanted to forget about it. But now that there had been other allegations on Marcus, she felt the time was right. This particular case is still pending, as each day continues, we learn new information, and in time, justice will be served.


According to Milton Friedman’s individualistic theory, a businesses one goal is to maximize profit within constraints of the law. (Salazar 17) Within this particular situation, John Jay College was not faced with the issue of there being an opportunity to maximize any profits. But, the individualists would still argue this case was unethical. The reason being lies where the individuals who were coerced into doing drugs, and ones who were even raped and a victim of sexual misconduct were not respected. In addition to this, doing drugs on school campus and cases of sexual misconduct are against the law. And according to individualists, when you violate the law, no matter the circumstance, it is unethical. Also, what individualists would take into account the fact that many students could potentially leave the school after a case like this, which overall would hurt the schools profits. In this particular case, they were not given the opportunity to pursue their own choices in this instance, furthermore, they were not allowed to live a life that they particularly wanted to, so for that sake, the individualists would believe this situation was unethical at all costs.
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The Two Victims of Sexual Misconduct


  Utilitarians would also believe that this given situation was unethical in every aspect. According to the utilitarian theory, To make everyone happy, content, and as satisfied as possible. To maximize happiness. Happiness is the only thing of value, we want to maximize it because more is better than less. Include everyone who is capable of happiness, including animals. (Salazar) In this case, no one ended up happy at any particular given time. The stakeholders happiness in this particular event had been effected drastically, and this would be something the utilitarians would take in affect. The students and staff who were victims of these allegations had suffered the mental abuse of these professors. In addition to that, the fact that sexual misconduct and rape was involved will also be a lead to the unhappiness of the students in the long run. Statistics show that Eight percent of rapes occur while the victim is at work. (NSVRC) The odds of this type of case actually happening is actually quite low, so for the fact that it actually did take place, makes it even bigger of a reason for Utilitarians to believe it was very unethical.
Finally, Kantians would also say that this situation was unethical. According to Kant’s theory, he believes that one should “act rationally- don't act inconsistently in your own actions or consider yourself exempt from the rules.” (Salazar) In this case, the professors are believed to be the ones considering themselves exempt from the rules. They also had not been acting “Rationally” when they considered to do drugs on campus. Acting rationally is based on or in accordance with reason or logic.  If they had wanted to do the drugs, they could have done them in the privacy of their own home. But, all in all nothing explains the sexual misconduct case, there is no excuse for that. The professors in this case had treated the students and other professors as a mere means. Going to the low of the low and hurting them by cases of rape, that is one, not acting rationally, and two, treating human beings more so as an object. They had basically considered them all as objects, and used them to satisfy their sick personal interests. This according to kantianism is wrong, and they would consider this very unethical.
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Virtue Theory
Virtue Theory is an approach to ethics that emphasizes on an individual's character as the key element of ethical thinking, rather than rules about the acts themselves. (Philosophy Basics) Aristotle created four main virtues to this theory, those include courage, honesty, temperance, and justice. Stating that rationality is what differentiates characteristics of people, Aristotle had a vision for life; if you act rationally, you perform well in life and if you perform well, that creates happiness. Analyzing this case from virtue theory, there are many things to take into account. The victims of these crimes finally came out and said something about the professors, someone finally had a voice, and this encouraged other people to speak up on this measure. I believe that in this particular case, the professors that are on the defense are not being quite honest. Giving that there were text messages proving that there was some sort of coercion, they should step up and own up to it. Temperance in this particular case would be how John Jay College handles this situation. What plans are the college putting in place to pyramid down a way to the entire staff on codes of behavior, for this particular case that will come in the future. The final virtue Justice, will be acted upon as this case developes. If found guilty on charges, it will be up to the New York City justice system to bring these individuals to serving some sort of jail time in prison. It will also be held responsible by the college to dismiss these individuals from their staff permanently without chance of return.

These facts and analyses are based on an original essay conducted by Jay Nanfito, "John Jay College: Professors facing allegations on Drug Sales and Sexual Misconduct."
Works Cited:
“Mission Statement.” John Jay College of Criminal Justice,

 “Virtue Ethics.” Virtue Ethics - By Branch / Doctrine - The Basics of Philosophy,

 Rashbaum, William K., and David W. Chen. “John Jay Professors Face Allegations of Drug Sales and Sexual Misconduct.” The New York Times, The New York Times, 23 Sept. 2018,

 Salazar, Heather. The Business Ethics Case Manual: The Authoritative Step-by-Step Guide to Understanding and Improving the Ethics of Any Business. Print. Date Retrieved: 18 Nov 2018.

 Dorn, Sara, and Melissa Klein. “College Professors Allegedly Sold Drugs, 'Pimped' out Students.” New York Post, New York Post, 23 Sept. 2018,

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