The Corner

Education

The Campaign to Stamp Out Academic Heresy

The Left grows increasingly intolerant of any messages that might impede its quest for complete social and economic control, and increasingly bold in its efforts at silencing voices it dislikes. Whether an argument might be true doesn’t matter any longer. If it is “inconvenient” it’s likely to be squelched.

In today’s Martin Center article, I write about one such case involving psychology professor Glenn Geher of SUNY-New Paltz.

Following a talk on campus by Professor Jonathan Haidt of Heterodox Academy fame, Geher was amazed at the hostility he found to Haidt’s message that students and professors ought to be much more willing to listen to arguments from people they disagree with. That led him to undertake a study on the underlying beliefs and values of academics.

There was nothing the least bit surprising in his findings (such as that professors in “soft” fields tend to care more about the feelings of their students than do professors in “hard” ones) and yet he ran into a brick wall in trying to get it published. Geher says that in his long career, he has never come close to such difficulty as he encountered with this paper. Eventually, he had to post it on his blog.

The reasons he was given (when given any at all) for rejecting the paper were weak and evasive.

My hunch is that his findings would have led some people to wonder if all the money we ladle into “higher education” is worth it. That’s not an idea the Left wants Americans to countenance.

George Leef is the the director of editorial content at the James G. Martin Center for Academic Renewal.

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