Sunday, January 26, 2003
Liberal bias and the academy: The San Diego Union-Tribune last week ran an article entitled "Some see widespread liberal bias at colleges."
Surprised? I didn't think so. The article isn't really anything that people who read National Review or The Weekly Standard or heck -- went to college -- didn't know before.
What is surprising is some of the letters to the editor the piece generated. You can find the letters here.
One Marjorie Sinel of Borrego Springs demonstrates the elitism, arrogance and ignorance of some liberals.
I, for one, was not surprised "that surveys show that liberal professors vastly outnumber conservatives." After all, we hope and expect that our professors are bright, educated and thoughtful persons and thus unlikely to have been persuaded by the specious logic cranked out by our many conservative think tanks.
I object to the current practice of demonizing liberals. Liberals are committed to the well-being and progress of all citizens, not just small and privileged groups. They are willing to use the power of government to advance these causes, if necessary.
How these goals can best be accomplished is, of course, never obvious, and it is in this regard that our universites are essential. They must continue to promote the free exchange of ideas and not be muzzled by ideologues.
Let's analyze this.
Sinel first makes the argument that anyone who is a conservative is stupid. I hereby invoke the Hoy corollary to the Dowd Rule: "Anyone who thinks that all conservatives are stupid is not as smart as any conservative."
As to Sinel's second point: The argument can be made that both liberals and conservatives are committed to the well-being and progress of "small and privileged group" they differ only in the groups they select. (i.e. liberals love trial lawyers, conservatives love business -- pick your poison.)
Finally, Sinel really misses the point. The article outlined the lack of the "free exchange of ideas" brought about by the often complete absence of the conservative viewpoint.
There are a few other letters in that list written by liberal-types, but they're the same ol', same ol'. Conservatives: Mean, evil and stupid. Liberals: Good.
Sorry, but the real world isn't that simple.