FUSION JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2010
By Zach Lahn
One of the most successful movements in modern history was the counterculture movement of the 1960s. Surprising as it may be, the anti-establishers and their "enlightenment" introduced America to endearing things like Woodstock, irregular bathing habits and "free love." In many ways, that lifestyle has gained ground (see: VW van sales), subjecting America to a new, more "progressive" way of thought.
While the psychedelic revolution may have stopped, the movement against the so-called establishment has not. It has only made a change in venue—somehow gaining credibility along the way. The counterculture movement is now taking the stage in college and university classrooms around the United States, though students are not the sponsors.
Who are the sponsors? A 2007 study published by Harvard University makes the answer very clear: the professors. At least 61 percent of Liberal Arts college professors surveyed identified their political and social preferences as liberal. As for the other side of the coin, conservative professors accounted for just 3.9 percent of the chalkboard dust.
The information above is easily grasped by understanding the following truism: The Woodstockians have grown up, and they, or their trainees, are now teaching America’s youth.
Being a college student at a very liberal institution, I have come to realize that the danger in academia is not coming from the one percent of outspoken Ward Churchill types. Teachers in this category are known to be radical and are marginalized by a majority of students. The true danger is the remaining 60 percent of the above-mentioned statistic. This group includes professors who are able to portray themselves as impartial while in reality are dangerously biased in their teaching.
The liberal indoctrination pushed by professors today is a combination of what they choose to teach students and what they refuse to teach students. Most students have no idea that the information they are receiving is one-sided. They do not recognize that many professors—especially those in the social sciences—are masters of casually "agendizing" the classroom. These professors allow their prejudice to determine course content. By assigning published books that align with their beliefs as mandatory reading, they are able to relay their message in a manner that looks credible to students.
Take an upper-division American history class and you will soon realize that America’s past wrongdoings have become the focal point of lectures. In my experience, many liberal professors see America as an evil, unjust land of oppression, a land that needs to be "fundamentally transformed." For example, capitalism is viewed not as having the potential to unleash prosperity, but rather as a source of discrimination and inequality. Pretty psychedelic considering that, in reality, our country and capitalistic system have given more rights, freedoms, and liberties to more people than any other system in the history of mankind.
Another example is the constantly debunked fiction of man-made global warming, which is presented as fact on campus. In a public policy class, the question was asked: "What policies can our government institute to stop global warming?" When I questioned the science behind the subject, I was told the global consensus was evidence enough. To quote Gen. Patton: "If everyone is thinking alike, then someone isn’t thinking."
In this case, a lot of people aren’t thinking.
These types of personal views are transferred to students daily through lectures, assigned reading, homework and exam questions. The result: Many students are graduating unaware that they are carrying a transplanted, one-sided worldview based on compliance rather than reason.
Societal punishments are born
through this compliance. It’s no coincidence that wealth redistribution and
other collectivist programs are heavily advocated by our current president and his Cabinet considering they’ve spent a combined 180 years studying at institutions of "higher education."
The war for our country must begin here—on the college campus. Unfortunately, we are fighting the symptoms rather than the cause; we are taking on the products rather than the producers. We have to rethink our strategy.
If we are serious about ensuring our country’s success, we must defeat the source of its failures by breaking the liberal stranglehold on academia.
Thomas Paine once said: "When men yield up the privilege of thinking, the last shadow of liberty quits the horizon." Today’s society proves him right. The lights cast by critical thinking are dimming, causing the shadows of our liberty to disappear.
Our battle is in the classroom. College must once again become a place of objective thinking. Informed students must take it upon themselves to recognize bias and intellectually stand up against it. Not only is it our right to question, it is our duty. Our questioning mellows the spread of the liberty dimming professorial disease and prevents it from clogging our classmates’ cranial critical thinking centers.
The aging counterculture crowd and their freshly sprouting flower children are attempting to author our country’s new establishment. For the sake of our future, we must retake the intellectual reins, rise against this far-out ideology and become the new change agents…or the new hippies. But this time around, bathing is not only allowed, it’s mandatory.