As we see our campuses descend into riots over the most idiotic, non-academic issues of concern only to the most rabid of Social Justice Warriors, many huge questions arise. Why did Berkeley police stand down in the face of Leftist rioters? Why are the administrators and staff assaulting students who support free speech? Why is it the independent press that identifies the attackers, and not the mainstream media or police?
One question stands above all others: how did the SJWs take over higher education? While the answer is “one position at a time,” it’s interesting to follow the tactics involved. An incident at Duke Divinity demonstrates how it works, and while the incident occurred a few months ago, only recently did the documentation finally get leaked to the public.
The beginning of the incident is simple enough, yet another SJW-inspired meeting on campus:
On behalf of the Faculty Diversity and Inclusion Standing Committee, I strongly urge you to participate in the Racial Equity Institute Phase I Training planned…
I’ve certainly been to a few of these, and they are positively nuts. One quick standout line from a Diversity meeting I was forced to go to:
“You should teach blacks the same way you teach pedophiles and rapists…”
–I’m serious, and this wasn’t even the most insulting part of the ‘training’ I was given credit for at the meeting…
In a word, these meetings are excruciating. Other, less professional, words come to mind, of course, but bottom line the meetings are a huge waste of time, on top of just how insulting much of the material is. Of course, the people putting on the meeting do what they can to make it sound like a great idea:
Those who have participated in the training have described it as transformative, powerful, and life-changing. We recognize that it is a significant commitment of time;
Life-changing is one of those buzzwords that’s turned into a flag meaning “avoid at all costs.” I’ve mentioned other disastrous things in higher education presented as life changing; if you have to overblow what you’re selling by such a huge margin, you must be selling crap so foul that any positive description would be a massive exaggeration, so you may as well go with something huge like “life changing.”
I really want to emphasize just how painful these meetings are:
8:30—5 pm both days. Participants should plan to attend both full days of training…It is the first step in a longer process.
The very highly paid commissars who put on these shows really have nothing better to do with their time…but I assure you scholars can easily find something superior to being subjected to 16 hours of being insulted, and being told that more is to follow doesn’t help.
Now, the first time around, faculty don’t know better, and we diligently file in to the meeting. These meetings pile up, however, and sooner or later, one faculty snaps, and decides to try to kill some of this infestation with a touch of truth. This is what happened at Duke Divinity: a professor tried to speak out against the madness the commissars are trying to impose.
Let’s see what the professor has to say. Normally I’d snip the highlights but a quotation in full is in order here:
Dear Faculty Colleagues,
I’m responding to [Commissar] Thea’s exhortation that we should attend the Racial Equity Institute Phase 1 Training scheduled for 4-5 March. In her message she made her ideological commitments clear. I’ll do the same, in the interests of free exchange.
I exhort you not to attend this training. Don’t lay waste your time by doing so. It’ll be, I predict with confidence, intellectually flaccid: there’ll be bromides, clichés, and amen-corner rah-rahs in plenty. When (if) it gets beyond that, its illiberal roots and totalitarian tendencies will show. Events of this sort are definitively anti-intellectual. (Re)trainings of intellectuals by bureaucrats and apparatchiks have a long and ignoble history; I hope you’ll keep that history in mind as you think about this instance.
We here at Duke Divinity have a mission. Such things as this training are at best a distraction from it and at worst inimical to it. Our mission is to thnk [sic], read, write, and teach about the triune Lord of Christian confession. This is a hard thing. Each of us should be tense with the effort of it, thrumming like a tautly triple-woven steel thread with the work of it, consumed by the fire of it, ever eager for more of it. We have neither time nor resources to waste. This training is a waste. Please, ignore it. Keep your eyes on the prize.
Now, Duke Divinity is a Catholic school, and he reinforces what the school’s mission is. All our institutions of higher education have mission statements, and, much like at Duke Divinity, they’ve fallen far astray.
The Dean had to respond with a mass e-mail to counter our brave professor’s heresy. Naturally, she (at the risk of being redundant) smacks down the heretic in her response, and one line in particular is obnoxious:
The use of mass emails to express racism, sexism, and other forms of bigotry is offensive and unacceptable, especially in a Christian institution.
Wow, good thing I quoted the professor in full above. Does the gentle reader see any racism, sexism, or bigotry in the professor’s rant? Why is it that every…single…time…someone tries to speak out against what’s happening on our campuses they get buried under such labels?
Administration has incredible power over faculty now. The professor’s heresy is not simply countered with a mass e-mail/libel/humiliation from the Dean, there’s more, as the professor explains:
My speech and writing about these topics has now led to two distinct (but probably causally related) disciplinary procedures against me, one instigated by…our Dean, and the other instigated by [Commissar] Thea Portier-Young, our colleague…
These disciplinary proceedings are designed not to engage and rebut the views I hold and have expressed about the matters mentioned, but rather to discipline me for having expressed them.
–in case the gentle reader is curious, the exact charges against the heretic are “unprofessional conduct” and “harassment.” One can be certain the kangaroo committees will be unanimous of their findings.
This is key to what happened in our institutions of higher ed: you speak out, and you are punished. Instead of the two full days of being insulted at the training session, the heretic will now endure weeks of being disciplined and dealing with hearings and written responses. It’s nuts, and the other faculty realize that in terms of time wasted, they’re better off with the indoctrination.
The kangaroo court system gets away with so much because it operates in secrecy. The heretic is doing what he can to reveal it:
[Dean] Heath’s and [Commissar] Portier-Young’s disciplinary proceedings are not public: they’re veiled, and accompanied by threats of reprisal if unveiled. I’d like them to take responsibility for what they’re doing, and so I’m making it public…
This is not simply a disgruntled professor making wild claims. I’ve been on secret committees where, after the accused made his defense, the accuser was secretly invited in to provide more secret testimony and secret evidence the accused never knew about, or had a chance to respond to (I’m certain much of the testimony/evidence was rubbish, but there were threats of reprisal if we didn’t do as admin wished…).
There are numerous documents regarding what’s being done to the heretic. Yes, he has tenure, but the endless harassment and piling on of charges can lead to only one conclusion because this treatment will not allow him to pursue honorable work:
According to a source close to [Heretic] Griffiths, he has resigned, effective at the end of the 2017-18 academic year.
And this, gentle reader, is how our educational system was lost. A faculty member makes even one complaint in an attempt to stop the takeover, and he’s buried under accusations of racism, unprofessionalism, harassment, or a host of other ridiculous possibilities. He can try to defend himself, but our institutions use a kangaroo court system where even the most ridiculous of charges merit convictions and punishments (with the Game of Thrones Professor saga being the best example so far, even if he did eventually get a pardon by taking things to the “real” court system).
In the face of a system completely hostile to the mission of higher education, the scholar sees no better option than to leave. His position will be filled by another Commissar, and she’ll do a fine job.
As always the comments section gives a bit more information:
[Commissar] Anathea Porter-Young…A quick Facebook search allowed me to investigate exactly what it is she teaches about the bible. She’s bragging on Facebook about ‘queering’ the bible and inserting Transgender Teachings as required Textbooks. Once again, another Institution has been successfully subverted by dead-eyed, socialist creeps.
Hey, remember when a professor at a Jesuit school was suspended for being pro-heterosexual marriage, and saying as much publicly online? I do. Why doesn’t this madness go both ways? Oh yeah: madness.