Opinion: conservative students must get active in the fight against universities' liberal agenda
Half a decade ago I was handed a piece of paper; after tens of thousands of dollars, tens of thousands of hours and enough Red Bull to blow my eyeballs out of their sockets, I had earned my degree.
Despite graduating, I never left college. It’s my job to be on campus.
As a Regional Field Coordinator (RFC) for the Leadership Institute, I advise campus organizations; it’s a bit like management consulting. The position has allowed me to keep a finger on the pulse of the college community, but the pulse is slow at best. Academia is rapidly deteriorating in the United States—driven by the liberal agenda of university administrators.
Week after week, Campus Reform reveals instances of bias, abuse and fraud on college campuses. Almost invariably, reported instances of university corruption are aimed at conservatives and libertarians, never liberals. Teachers mock or threaten conservative students; right-leaning campus groups are censored, harassed or banned by administrators; and public universities routinely violate the Bill of Rights. Free speech zones, restrictions on self-defense, and invasions of privacy are all becoming business-as-usual.
Often, these stories are brought to light by students—whistleblowers willing to take a stand even with the possibility of reprisal.
Recently, a student at the University of Kentucky sent Campus Reform a tip claiming the university had distributed surveys on sexual orientation. Respondents were asked invasive questions pertaining to sexual preferences and religious beliefs. Students who identified as straight were asked if they believed homosexuality is sinful, a mental illness or if “[m]ale homosexuality is a perversion.”
There was no promise of privacy or anonymity in the email announcing the survey, which used unique URLs for each respondent. One need only imagine a scenario in which a person of authority who is politically-charged might abuse such data.
However, thanks to the tipster and Campus Reform’s reporting, the university shut down the survey.
All students should be afforded the dignity and comfort of privacy when it comes to topics of such a sensitive nature. This would be the case in an honest academic environment.
However, campus culture has to change for universities to become honest academic environments. That can be done through media accountability and news tips, but direct campus pushback is important, too; start organizations that dissent from the leftist agenda that’s monopolizing the campus environment.
Don’t like the liberal bend of your economics department? Start a free-market advocacy organization. Does the school demonize the Second Amendment? Create a firearms club and hold an empty holster protest.
Being passive and complacent never wins ideological battles. We need to step it up.
As an RFC, I help campus groups fundraise, bring in speakers, grow membership, coordinate activism, promote events and gain media attention. Campus pushback is a chance to educate and offer students alternative perspectives to those that they’re being ordered to buy wholesale. It’s a chance to make universities a place of questioning and higher-learning again.
After all, if students are going to spend tens of thousands of dollars and tens of thousands of hours to earn a piece of paper, they should at least make sure that piece of paper is worth the personal investment.