Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Beware Liberal Colleges

In a recent post (Red America v. Blue Europe) I showed a ranking of the top 20 universities in the world. Of the 20 best schools, 17 are located in the United States, and none are Liberal Arts schools such as Smith, Vassar, Williams or Willamette. The top universities are renowned for their science, business and law. Yet even the foremost research universities have “liberal studies” curricula that are like an “evil virus” infecting the student population and society at large. “Parents, inoculate yourselves. It may be too late for your children.” So wrote Suzanne Fields in a Washington Times article (The evil virus upon us).

In the American Studies program at New York University, for example, is a popular course called "Intersections: Gender Race and Sexuality in U.S. History and Politics." The class spends a week analyzing the murder of Teena Brandon, a young woman who pretended to be a man. Students also study the life and murder of Tupac Shakur, the "gangsta" rapper who glorified drugs, abusing women and the violence. Other courses are called "Queer Lives and Culture" and "Global Divas: Filipino Gay Men in the Diaspora." Parents shell out $40,000 per year for this trash.

Smith College has a different problem. About two dozen women who arrived as female have become male, more or less. Smith has long been "gay friendly," but now that girls have become "boys" Smithies joke that the school motto is "Queer in a year or your money back." That’s $37,000 a year.

A program at the University of Pennsylvania deconstructs Herman Melville and other dead white males seeking hidden meanings of homosexuality, pederasty and incest. Vassar College has a "Homo Hop." The Queer Student Union at Williams College holds a "Queer Bash" with gay pornography.

Parents need to watch out for academic programs in "Gender Studies, Ethnic Studies, Afro-American Studies, Women's Studies, Gay, Lesbian and Transgender Studies." Roger Kimball writes in New Criterion magazine that these programs "are not the names of academic disciplines but political grievances. Parents are rightly alarmed at the spectacle of their children going off to college one year and coming back the next having jettisoned every moral, religious, social and political scruple they have been brought up to believe."

Parents who enroll their children in most universities need to worry about the harmful propaganda their kids are being force fed. Or they can do a more sensible thing and select a college or university where traditional values are still in the mainstream.

After 12 years of home schooling her children, Marta Burgess had no intention of turning them over to just any college, to face professors who might actively deconstruct their value systems. The Burgesses enrolled their first two daughters at Hillsdale College in rural Hillsdale, Mich. and number three enters next year. Lt. General Burgess, who serves in the National Intelligence Directorate, has become president of Hillsdale's advisory board of parents. Hillsdale and the Burgess family are on the same page when it comes to what constitutes a sound college education.

Following is a list of the 10 best colleges for those with a more traditional bent based on the guide
Choosing the Right College: The Whole Truth About America's Top Schools.

1. University of Chicago – "It's the best school for students who want to spend four years reading serious books and talking to serious people." The political climate at Chicago is diverse and remarkably tolerant and conservative professors can be found in most departments.


2. Hillsdale College, Hillsdale, Michigan - Hillsdale's motto proclaims that it is "educating for liberty. Hillsdale offers excellent teachers and a great curriculum. It spawns many of the conservative activists and scholars who wind up on the Beltway thanks to a curriculum that stresses a "commitment to the Western heritage and to a rigorous liberal arts education."

3. Christendom College, Front Royal, Virginia – At this solidly Catholic, profoundly thoughtful liberal arts college, the core curriculum includes six semesters of philosophy in order "to assist the student in using reason to understand the nature of reality and to illumine further the truth of revelation." Daily mass is an integral, but not mandatory, part of college life.

4. Wheaton College, Wheaton, Illinois - The leading Evangelical school is a solid bastion of reflective Christian formation and excellent scholarship. Students take courses in each of four learning clusters: faith and reason, society, nature, and literature and the arts.

5. Thomas Aquinas College, Santa Paula, California - At the edge of the Los Padres National forest, this Catholic liberal arts college "is the perfect escape from the outside word - ideal for undertaking the gravitas of Thomas Aquinas." They study the Great Books, a rigorous curriculum that consists of the writings of some of the greatest thinkers ever.

6. Baylor University, Waco, Texas - This Baptist school is a place where conservative students can get a solid liberal arts education. College Democrats and Republicans coexist on the Baylor campus, along with a flourishing chapter of the Young Conservatives of Texas.

7. Catholic University of America, Washington, D.C. - Chartered by Pope Leo XIII in 1887, it is the foremost Catholic university in the United States, with first-rate minds, excellent resources, a sincere student body and a sense of mission. Politics at CUA definitely leans to the right.

8. Grove City College, Grove City, Pennsylvania - The school "seeks to provide liberal and professional education of the highest quality that is within the reach of families with modest means who desire a college that will strengthen their children's spiritual and moral character." Political conflicts at Grove City tend to reflect differences among conservatives.

9. University of Dallas, Irving, Texas - Founded by the Sisters of St. Mary of Namur, UD is full of devoted scholars who are dedicated to teaching. "With high moral and intellectual expectations placed on the students through the core curriculum, one does not find the kind of politically charged 'activism' found at many other universities."

10. Washington and Lee, Lexington, Virginia - One-time college president Robert E. Lee helped craft W&L's honor code and its genteel customs of civility. Teachers are dedicated, students gracious, and most subjects still taught the way they were 30 years ago. "It's a conservative's heaven," says one student, "but liberals still feel comfortable."

3 Comments:

Blogger Ralph said...

Bill,
I am shocked as a University of Chicago graduate to find that the school that my father insisted was communist and where my classmates identified strongly with Berkeley and Madison is now viewed as a great place to get a comprehensive and unbiased education. I was convinced they were going down the tubes when they cut back the core curriculum a few years back. Maybe I need to start supporting them again.

7:12 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bill - Great, as usual. I'm going to print this out and save it for when my sons get ready to start applying to colleges. You should check out John Leo's "On Society" Column in the October 10th edition of U.S. News & World Report. The column is titled "The Parent Trap" and it's about a couple whose child is being forced to take "diversity" classes - "diversity" as in "families" with two mommies or two daddies - - and this is KINDERGARTEN!!!!! The parents met with school officials and just tried to enable their child to opt-out of that class; no dice, the school wouldn't hear of it. Why do teachers and administrators treat parents like the enemy??? At any rate, the father refused to leave the meeting after being asked to and was arrested. The ACLU is on the school's side: there's a surprise!!

Dave

7:54 PM  
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