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Why higher education is the most important battleground for America’s soul

Recently it’s been said “We all live on campus now.” It’s an expression that speaks to the craziness 2020 has wrought. But what does it mean, exactly?

Well, basically that everything we’re experiencing today in our nation first took place at our colleges and universities.

The left’s narrative that now has a vice grip on America started, spread and bred on college campuses. This is why higher education is the most important battleground for the heart and soul of America and its future.

For far too long most have shrugged off the growing alarm bells over the bias and indoctrination force fed to the next generation. Shocking headlines come and go, but nothing changes. In fact, it keeps getting worse.

Now America is fully engulfed in culture wars, racial unrest, and the rising tide of socialism — and there should be no surprise as to why that is.

Consider this:

We’ve recently seen mobs of activists confront restaurant goers and demand they admit to their white privilege. It echoes the uproar at Evergreen State in 2017, when student protesters stormed a white biology professor’s class and demand he admit his privilege.

But what’s more, for the last decade or so college students across the country have been told they have white privilege, and that this country is built on white supremacy, during freshmen orientation, mandatory diversity courses and history class.

Lately we’ve also seen mobs of activists on social media cancel anyone or anything that offends them. It even has a name — Cancel Culture. But before it had a name, it was the reality on campuses across the country, where student activists demanded, often successfully so, the cancellation of speakers and events that offend them.

What’s more, conservative students have felt the full brunt of this activism. They are often maligned by peers, attacked on social media, doxxed, and in some cases physically assaulted.

2020 also brought us the coronavirus. Amid this pandemic, several local and state governments set up hotlines and other methods to report small business owners or individuals for various violations. But did you know narking on your neighbor is a tried-and-true tradition on campus?

Over the last decade the vast majority of universities have set up bias response reporting systems, encouraging students to tell officials of anything that upsets or troubles them.

In recent months, many of our nation’s statues have also been torn down, vandalized, or targeted for removal, including figures such as Thomas Jefferson and Abraham Lincoln. While some might be shocked that our nation’s heroes are now under attack, don’t be. Jefferson and Lincoln statues have been protested for years on campuses such as the University of Virginia, the University of Wisconsin-Madison and the University of Missouri.

Over the summer, the Washington Redskins NFL football team agreed to change its name after years of pressure. Team names and mascots have long been the focus of campus protest. In 2014, a Christian college tossed its Crusaders mascot because it was allegedly too controversial. More recently, Cal State Long Beach ditched its “Prospector Pete” mascot for a non-binary shark who uses plural pronouns.

How many of us were shocked as we watched American cities burn over the summer? But the images were reminiscent of the violent, fiery protest at UC Berkeley in 2017 that forced the cancellation of a controversial speaker event. And calls to “defund the police” are not new on college campuses, where biased, anti-police lectures and curricula have festered unabated.

Let’s also mention the transgender craze sweeping the nation, culminating in June with the Supreme Court ruling it a protected class. At this point in America any deviation from the full embrace of transgender ideology is met with vicious attacks, just ask J.K Rowling or Martina Navratilova, two feminist icons smeared for questioning it.

We can trace this to the campus, too. Since at least 2012, many universities have taught that gender is a spectrum and a choice. It became a cause célèbre on campus. Universities created complex charts with made-up words to express the spectrum of gender pronouns, and in some cases forced students to announce their preferred pronouns at meetings or other events. Students who refuse may be reported to bias response teams. University health systems have set up programs to help students transition, often without the knowledge or consent of their parents.

And who can talk about higher education’s influence on this nation without mentioning how professors have essentially championed socialism as the best and only solution to this country’s woes. Most polls today find young people support socialism, and that’s because professors have insisted it’s the only way to achieve equity from our country’s past mistakes. Not equality, mind you. Academics want equity of outcomes, a paradigm that would destroy the American way of life and put government bureaucrats in charge of almost everything.

Speaking of which, for those who say today that “America was never great” in response to President Donald Trump’s campaign slogan, that too can be traced right back to campus. Many university leaders over the summer put out statements condemning the nation’s systemic racism and white supremacy, acknowledging it as a fact. Those sentiments were pushed in the classroom for years. Now they’ve become the official stance of most institutions of higher education.

Recently a controversial National Museum of African American History & Culture’s “White Culture” chart made headlines. It listed traits it deemed examples of whiteness, like “rugged individualism,” the “Protestant work ethic” and the notion “hard work is the key to success.” It was removed after outcry, but those ideas are still taught inside the college classroom today.

Phrases such as “America is the land of opportunity,” “America is a melting pot,” and “everyone can succeed in this society if they work hard enough” have been deemed racist microaggressions because, according to diversity educators, they do not take into account the notion that race plays a role in life’s successes.

And we wonder why America is so bitterly divided today? We shouldn’t. The root cause can be traced directly to the corruption within higher education.

Are there solutions? Here are a few to consider:

For one, stop blindly sending high school grads straight into a four-year college. Have them get a job, join the military, try a vocational school or apprenticeship, study STEM. Some of the most successful billionaires today are college dropouts. America remains the land of opportunity, and there are many pathways to success. Don’t buy into the preschool-to-college pipeline as the only one.

Second, don’t let your kids’ teachers be their only teachers. When my son was growing up, sometimes I’d have him watch a few PragerU videos before he was allowed to play video games. It was one of the many ways I worked to counter the indoctrination he received at public schools. We also discussed what he learned at school around the dinner table. We watched educational documentaries. We listened to conservative talk radio. Proactive parenting may just save this nation yet.

Finally, ramp the pressure up. Stop donating to alma maters. Write to regents and trustees expressing concern. Support lawmakers who introduce legislation to protect free speech and academic freedom.

Friends, America is at war, and the most important battleground today is the college campus. We cannot cede this territory any longer. We must fight back. We must change the paradigm.

Our freedom, our liberty, our future, depends on it.

IMAGE: Spiro Inc. / Shutterstock

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About the Author
Fix Editor
Jennifer Kabbany is editor of The College Fix. She previously worked as a daily newspaper reporter and columnist for a decade in Southern California, and prior to that held editorial positions at The Weekly Standard, Washington Times and FrontPageMagazine. She is also a Robert Novak Journalism Fellowship recipient and has contributed to National Review.

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