Conservatives have seen the YouTube videos, Fox News headlines, and Wall Street Journal editorials documenting the scourge of political correctness on college campuses across the nation.
They are dumbfounded, understandably so. The picture of the modern college campus is not one that allows for true discourse. Instead, campuses have become harvesting grounds for monolithic liberal thought. Safe spaces where “safe” connotes radically leftist platitudes.
We have seen the results of catering to social activist groups more concerned with protesting in the library than studying in it.
You probably recall the mythical swastika drawn in feces at the University of Missouri that nobody saw. Some have dubbed it the ‘Immaculate Defecation.'
Instead of resulting in the birth of the man who died for our sins, JC, the outcome was a school president’s professional death via resignation.
You might also remember the Yale students demanding “an acknowledgment of hurt” from one of their professors. The mob of social justice warriors surrounded Nicholas Christakis, a PhD-holding professor of biosocial science, and proceeded to lecture him on the obligations of his job:
Principle among his duties, per one very triggered Yalie:
“It is your job to create a space of comfort.”
Dr. Christakis’ error in judgment, per this all-knowing 19-year-old? Mistaking an Ivy League campus for a forum of intellectual discourse.
“It is NOT about creating an intellectual space, it’s about creating a home.”
Yale: America’s cushiest home away from home since 1701.
All this outrage aimed squarely at Christakis was the result of his wife, a professor herself, sending an email to Yale administrators which suggested regulations on students’ Halloween costumes might fall into the realm of coddling.
I have considered myself fortunate to avoid these sorts of fire-spitting snowflake students on my enormous state university campus.
As a senior who has taken the Tommy Boy approach to graduation, I have found myself largely in the presence of young adults who are willing to speak of their ideological differences without resorting to hyperbolic charges of bigotry.
My college experience has, by and large, been reflective of what I was promised by guidance counselors: an array of interactions with a diversified student body which challenges yet ultimately accepts others’ contrarian viewpoints.
That all changed in this, my final semester. This has been a semester where the seeds of social outrage, and the professors who water these seeds until they become delicate intellectual sunflowers, have been exposed.
I used to only wonder how an 18-year-old could lack the sense of shame that would overwhelm me should I ever find myself publically shouting down a professor with a PhD on the campus quad.
Now, wonderment has begun to transform itself into understanding. All it took was a few sessions in what is essentially a sociology class.
Last week’s meeting alone had me witness enough examples of liberal illogic for a lifetime, never mind an hour-long discussion.
Here is something that was actually said out loud, with absolutely no hint of self-awareness, irony, or humor:
“I think I speak for everyone in this room when I say that wealth redistribution is a good thing.”
Never mind that wealth redistribution was not being discussed even tangentially.
By this student’s logic, advocacy for the redistribution of wealth serves as a baseline of common sense, universally agreed upon policy of the morally good. Further, those who believe in wealth redistribution (the good people) would necessarily believe in bettering the status of minorities through affirmative action.
Floored by this assertion, I responded by stating that I was unequivocally not in favor of wealth redistribution, for I am not a socialist.
Thankfully, I was saved from my ignorance by another student equipped with the Bernie doctrine in their back pocket.
“You don’t have to be a socialist to believe in wealth redistribution.”
This was it. I was in it.
This was no Tucker Carlson YouTube video in which he dismantles a factually unequipped social justice warrior. I was no longer reading a sophisticated, point-for-point refutation of the liberal ideology via a Charles Krauthammer column.
I had been transported from the safe confines of the zoo exhibit and thrown into the African plains without a rifle.
Lest I set off Berkeley-style riots on my own placid campus, I let the issue of Bernie-nomics go. I had said my peace. And, I write with a dose of pride, I had established myself as the class contrarian.
So the lesson proceeded further into affirmative action, with Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas becoming the focus. Our fearlessly liberal professor had prepared a discussion question for us to ponder:
“Why is it ironic that Clarence Thomas professes to “hate” affirmative action?”
The answer he was looking for was obvious. That perhaps, because he is a black man in a position of power occupied by few minorities, just maybe he had benefitted from the policies of affirmative action somewhere down the line.
Never one for nuance, Professor Sharpton took it about fifteen steps further:
“Because Thomas is where he is because of affirmative action.”
And this, ladies and gentlemen, is how those students you see accepting liberal narratives as gospel come to feel so empowered in their outrage against dissenting opinion.
It is the professors leading the charge, the students merely hear and repeat. And, on cue, a heavily tattooed, ostensibly white student in the front row said something astoundingly racist.
“It’s hard to believe that he would be against affirmative action, because he’s a black guy.”
Just go ahead and call him an Uncle Tom while you’re at it, you ignorant millennial.
Just when I had resigned myself to keeping my mouth shut for the rest of the semester, I witnessed something remarkable. I like to believe that it was my earlier example of independent, critical thought that led the way.
“How do we know that he actually benefitted from affirmative action? Do we know his test scores?”
The professor’s brow furrowed, you could practically see his brain twisting itself into a pretzel as he considered this girl’s question. Seriously, it’s like this 30-something sociology professor had never actually considered the merits of his bold assumption. It’s almost like no 18-year-old had ever challenged him on it before.
“That’s a good question. Since he was one of the only black people in the Yale, we can assume that affirmative action had something to do with him being there.”
Now, if you are trying to find logic in this response from the professor, just stop. It’s not logical. And my newfound contrarian in the second to last row was not going to let it slide.
“But if he was one of the only ones, wouldn’t that mean that Yale was not using quotas for minorities like you said?”
That was enough of the critical thought for the day, according to the professor. It has become a trend in this class to hear a common phrase when debate (rarely) gets to the point of actual discourse, to the point where the teacher’s lesson points might actually be challenged.
“We’re running out of time, let’s move on.”
Wouldn’t want the indoctrination to be interrupted by debate and “alternative facts,” would we?
So far this semester we have watched John Oliver’s 20-minute take on Donald Trump, an obese, self-proclaimed redneck’s testimonial that America is a nation built on racist white culture, and “diversity expert” Jane Elliott’s take on discrimination, which is interesting in its own way:
We’ve yet to truly delve into the majority of the course material regarding race, and gender is yet to come.
We began to talk about the Confederate Flag, which almost sparked a brawl.
I don’t expect the rest of the course to be a true embrace of debate, but I’ll be damned if I’m going to hold my tongue. My fellow contrarians have further emboldened me to make this class, if not educational, at least interesting.
One of my classmates asked rhetorically, “But don’t you think that the (Confederate) flag could be a trigger for somebody?” as the totality of her argument against its display.
Well, I hope that the fragile freshmen and shatterable sophomores brought their earmuffs. I hope Professor Planned Parenthood doesn’t fail the conservative minded on principle alone.
Because I intend to trigger the living hell out of them for the rest of my time on campus.
I have witnessed the seeds of social justice weeds being planted.
Consider me industrial strength Roundup.