Thursday, April 21, 2005

Et tu Morrow?

Today highwayscribery takes up the Academic Bill of Rights movement pushed by the conservative juggernaut working at seemingly every level of organized life.

the scribe has been conscious of a slow and steady stream of articles portraying the noble fight being carried on by conservative student groups in liberal academia. Good for them.

This other thing is fleshed out in a “San Diego Union-Tribune” article written by Lisa Petrillo (take a close look at the end of this address, before html)

The idea is to regulate what professors can talk about in the classroom so as to protect some students from being ideologically bullied.

There is, of course, no code to speak of here. The idea is to protect students from bullying liberal professors and their wrong-headed dogma.

(there’s the (r)epublican in the thing).

According to the article there is a bill in Congress aimed at controlling the content of classroom discussion and like measures have passed the Georgia legislature and the Florida House.

In California the effort is being spearheaded by Sen. Bill Morrow (r) of Oceanside.

His SB 5, which can be found at, assays the situation in this way:

“[i]ntellectual independence means the protection of students from the imposition of any orthodoxy of a political, religious, or ideological nature. To achieve the intellectual independence of students, teachers, should not take unfair advantage of their position of power over a student by indoctrinating him or her with the teacher’s own opinions upon the matters in question, and before a student has sufficient knowledge and life experience to form any definitive opinion of his or her own...”

Which is all well and good, were it not already the case in American universities.

There is an inherent judgement in the proposal that some of these things are occurring and others of them are not. That university life is broken over the workbench of liberal politics.

There are, it would seem to suggest, a sea of 20 year-olds out there unable to form definite opinions on their own.

And their parents can’t wait to meet them!

And finally, the professors are “bullies.”

And maybe they are, but them’s fightin’ words and represent a veiled attack by conservative pols on their greatest beast - liberal academia.

the scribe’s not going to say that universities aren’t rife with lesbian women researching matriarchal societies in the sub-Saharan bush. They are and they should be, without apologies.

Many years ago the scribe read an Op-ed entitled “Let the Jester do Somersaults” the gist of which was that university life is perhaps the only respite a growing mind will get from the usual and overwhelming pap about free markets, the wonders of capitalism, and evils of collective co-dependence.

If you don’t want your child to know about communist history, or the general strike of San Francisco 1934, or the medical suppression of 1950s housewives through prescription drugs...send them to business school.

In fact, by his own experience, the scribe would recommend it.

The Academic Bill of Rights movement’s pretension to pluralism is naught but a camouflaged effort to end it in society at large, because universities are the last safe place for progressive people to make a fair living and carry on their work.

They are running from bullies, who have now singled them out for drubbing.

Call Morrow at (916) 445-3731 and tell him to put his small government principles to work by stuffing this intrusive legislation up the old graduation cap.

Kerry Love. More love for the senator from Massachusetts who continues his use of the world wide web in an attempt to construct a functioning opposition. On Tuesday he sent out an e-mail asking folks to visit Sen. Edward Kennedy’s site and sign his petition on preserving the filibuster.

On Thursday Kerry blasted a video message on the same topic

By helping these guys out, following their simple directions, you can take very little time to affect a larger strategic push.

Already, something is afoot and the administration seems at loose-ends, rudderless.

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