Trigger Warning! If you’re among those who insist on thinking that our higher education system is “the envy of the world,” you will probably be offended by the article in question. Hit the delete button RIGHT NOW to avoid the possibility of that new American horror: being offended.
The article is today’s Pope Center piece by Jenna A. Robinson. It’s the transcript of her talk at the John Locke Foundation’s Shaftesbury Society meeting on April 17. It is entitled “10 ways the Ivory Tower is eroding American values.” To an alarming extent, and increasingly, students enrolled in our colleges and universities are immersed in a campus culture that is antithetical to free inquiry, speech, individual merit and fundamental fairness. Students hear, for example, professors tell them that intolerance is all right, as long as it’s directed at “privileged” people and concepts. They see their institutions set up kangaroo courts for the adjudication of allegations of serious crimes, as well as of petty complaints about speech they don’t agree with. They face a curriculum where it’s difficult to find the courses that used to be regarded as the pillars of a liberal education, but where courses on various “Grievance Studies” and niche classes that profs like teaching abound.
What can anyone do?
She has two good suggestions. First, stop giving money to your alma mater. “They won’t spend it wisely. And even if you try to attach strings to your donation, the school will find ways around them.” That’s good advice. Donations from alums do little to pay for what’s left of the core of liberal education; the money mostly goes into everything else that the administrators want to do, so stop enabling them to pursue their agendas. Second, publicize outlandish stories you hear about, whether at your alma mater or any other school. The more people know about what is going on, the more likely they’ll demand that things change.