Reading about how math Professor Peter Rosnick decided to veer off math for a while to try to manipulate his students to vote for Hillary Clinton (though, to be fair, he cleverly didn’t actually mention her name) reminded me of several relevant quotes.
Some years ago, a libertarian syndicated columnist named Nat Hentoff penned a piece titled “College no place for closed minds” (Chicago Sun-Times, Sept. 15, 2005, p. 45). Some of the points he made: even some mainstream educational groups (which Hentoff lists) expressed concern about the widespread intolerance and hostility on many college campuses towards conservatives and their ideas and values; liberal college professors outnumbered conservative professors by a five to one ratio; in some classrooms on various college campuses “conservative students are intimidated into silence, ignored or occasionally ridiculed” by narrow-minded liberals; and“indoctrination -— instead of free inquiry — ... characterizes much of higher education.”
According to an article in Washington Monthly magazine, “62.2 percent of professors self-identify as liberal, compared to 19.7 as conservative ... 9.4 percent of faculty members say they’re ‘extremely liberal’” (Kevin Carey, “Tenured Moderates,” Washington Monthly, Jan./Feb. 2010, p. 52).
And according to an article in The New York Times, “It’s certainly true that professors are a liberal lot ... [A]bout half of the professors identified as liberal, as compared to just one in five Americans overall...[Among academic] social scientists, for example, there were 10 Democrats for every Republican ... There’s no doubt that in terms of overall curricular content and campus culture, most colleges and universities do skew more to the left than to the right” (Neil Gross, “The Indoctrination Myth,” The New York Times, “Sunday Review” section, March 4, 2012, p. 12).
Closed-minded, intolerant, ignorant liberal bigots who believe it’s okay to discriminate against conservatives and “politically incorrect” speech exist, and many of them are unfortunately found on college campuses, where they are using their influence to try to insinuate their questionable values into others. Hopefully students are aware of all the one-sided, liberal propaganda they are manipulatively being exposed to. But I fear they are not.
As noted above, this kind of sleazy discrimination isn’t new. On college campuses all across this country ignorant liberal bigots have been discriminating against conservative speech and conservatives for years. The legal group acronymed FIRE (Foundation for Individual Rights in Education), which defends conservative teachers and students who have been discriminated against by liberal bigots on various college campuses, could provide you with a lengthy list of such cases.
It would be nice to see students pushing for intellectual diversity on their campuses, and maybe even affirmative action for hiring a true minority on college campuses: conservative teachers. Until that happens, liberal college professors and liberal students will feel free to continue to try to take advantage of others. That needs to change.
- Wayne Lela