I’ve often been told that college campuses are hotbeds of leftist thinking. That’s what I’ve been told. What I’ve seen with my own eyes?
Well, certainly, multiculturalism, the demon-spawn of leftism, sure is popular. I never really attributed it to leftism, however. The courses are brain-dead simple, and even roadkill can pass the course (students that don’t even know they’re enrolled in the course still have a good chance of getting an A, according to the registrar at one institution I was at).
When it came to outright political views, yes, I noticed that people with leftist views tended to get promotions, and people that didn’t drink the Kool-Aid were ever consigned to dark corners of campus. Again, I just assumed it was because leftists taught brain-dead courses, and had no trouble winning the student popularity awards that administrators believe are the best way to determine if the teacher is any good.
I’ve seen many administrators spout leftist beliefs. I’ve never seen one openly state anything that would be particularly conservative (although a few accounting types have been known to whisper that they’ve listened to Limbaugh for reasons other than amusement). Again, it meant little to me; administrators aren’t trained to think, I can hardly expect them to question what they were trained as children in our public schools to believe. The indoctrination starts there, and I’d be remiss if I didn’t admit that I, too, believed the things I was told as a child…at least when I was a child.
The fact still remains: I’ve never seen anyone say non-leftist things and advance in higher education. I guess it’s happened, mind you, but it’s not something I’ve seen with my own eyes.
Only in my most paranoid, suspicious moments did I think that conservative faculty were being left behind simply because of their political or religious views. A recent article leads me to believe it isn’t mere paranoid suspicion on my part:
“…his case represents the kind of bias many on the right say they experience in academe (typically without a verdict like this one).”
—I’m not exactly on the right, but I’ve been on the business end of some pretty extreme hate from colleagues, too … could it be I opened my mouth once or twice?
In short: a professor was passed up for promotion. He claimed his conservative political views were responsible, while admin said “nope, we just don’t think you’re good enough.” The jury disagreed, saying the evidence was clear that his conservative views were, unfairly, the reason he was not given a promotion.
(I come to yet another meeting where admin will bloviate about their plans for growth. In preparation, I bring a sandwich):
Marxist Faculty: “You know, under the Marxist model, that sandwich you brought to the meeting would be shared with everyone.”
Me: “No. Under communism, I’d know I’d have to share, so I wouldn’t bring a sandwich. We’d all starve. That would model communism better.”
–I’m no conservative, but I’m certainly not a leftist. I had fun with the Marxist history professor, though. He laughed, denying that Marxism and communism were the same thing…I politely ceded the point. They are different words, after all.
Now some will cite this victory as proof of academic freedom, and that this was an isolated incident of discrimination that really isn’t representative of higher education today. I feel the need to point out just what it took to get this verdict:
“Adams sued in 2007…”
First: it took seven frickin’ years. This is enough time for a new faculty to join the institution as an instructor, and work all the way up the ranks to full professor. Meanwhile, the victim here had to fight 7 years to just get one promotion. How many people, when wronged, have the strength of will to argue for 7 years over a promotion that might only mean a couple of thousand dollars a year? This guy might have paid half a million dollars in legal fees in order to get $14,000 in lost wages.
“He cited emails and statements from faculty colleagues taking issue with his views, which are outspoken and conservative. (You can find a selection of his columns here.) The Adams case was of particular interest to many who charge political bias in the academy because he is a political (and religious) convert. He presented evidence that his faculty colleagues liked him when he was an atheist Democrat, but started to have concerns when he became a Christian Republican.”
Second: the evidence had to be overwhelming and unquestionable. To win this type of case, the victim clearly must first be leftist, and must save documentation that he’s treated decently as a leftist. He must establish leftist cred, and befriend the leftists. Then, only then, can he espouse conservative or religious views, and then he must save his documentation to show that he’s treated differently once his views and beliefs have changed.
Goodness, what an abusive standard of proof.
Someone who came on campus as a conservative would have no way to win this type of case, and should be prepared for unfair treatment indefinitely; promotions should be considered out of the question for people who come to campus as conservatives.
You must literally convert from left to right, and save your documentation, and be willing to fight for seven years, to even have a chance in this system.
While having that documentation was a lucky break, conversions from left to right are hardly rare. I’ve seen it many a time. In my experience, as soon as a leftist earns something, the whole “government should take from the people that earned something and give it to the people that didn’t” philosophy doesn’t seem nearly as fair as when the leftist hadn’t earned anything. Go figure.
It’s funny, I’ve never seen a convert from right to left. I guess it happens, somewhere? Any volunteers?
Next time, we’ll go over the rest of what is needed for a conservative to show bias, because crushing evidence and the willingness to fight for 7 years isn’t nearly enough. I’ll have some information on how unscrupulous admin was willing to be to block this promotion…it’s pretty amazing stuff.