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<nettime> just plain education and its discontents
Ryan Griffis on Fri, 31 Oct 2003 09:37:07 +0100 (CET)

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<nettime> just plain education and its discontents

"He said that, by its nature, the training asks people
to assume discrimination against certain groups is a

That is 'something we want to see not treated as an
objective truth,' Dick said."

-sounds like the US Repubs want Affirmative Action for
conservatives... how scarily ironic.

this article (from the Atlanta Guardian) was forwarded
to me from a friend in Athens GA - sorry, i don't have
a link. but here's a Wash Times article

Universities accused of liberal bent

Witnesses call for 'sense of balance'
Melanie Eversley - Staff
Thursday, October 30, 2003

Washington --- A week after U.S. Rep. Jack Kingston, a
Savannah Republican, introduced a bill asserting that
college campuses are too liberal, Senate Republicans
on Wednesday held a hearing on the issue.

At the hearing presided over by Sen. Judd Gregg
(R-N.H.), chairman of the Senate Committee on Health,
Education, Labor and Pensions, witnesses testified
that America's colleges and universities intimidate
students and faculty into liberal ways of thinking.

They complained that, among other things, colleges
force them to take diversity training and condone
harassment of students who write conservative-oriented
pieces for college newspapers.
"Rather than fostering intellectual diversity . . .
our colleges and universities are increasingly
bastions of political correctness hostile to free
exchange of ideas," said Anne Neal, president of the
American Council of Trustees and Alumni, an
8-year-old, nonprofit organization whose founders
include Sen. Joe Lieberman (D-Conn.) and Lynne Cheney,
wife of Vice President Dick Cheney.

The Washington-based group says it is dedicated to
ensuring academic freedom. The organization wants
college and university trustees to call on faculty to
present points of view other than their own in a
balanced way and to demand that campus speakers
represent a range of views.

"All we want is some sense of balance," said Robert
Davis Johnson, a professor at Brooklyn College and the
Graduate Center of the City University of New York.

Johnson said Brooklyn College unsuccessfully tried to
deny him tenure last year after he opposed hiring
based on gender, instead of merit, and protested the
college's sponsorship of a forum after the 2001 terror
attacks that included no voices in favor of U.S. or
Israeli policies.

Anthony Dick, a student at the University of Virginia
who helped found the Individual Rights Coalition, a
student group that opposes what it charges are abuses
of individual freedoms by college administrators,
complained about the campus instituting diversity
training for students. He said that, by its nature,
the training asks people to assume discrimination
against certain groups is a problem.

That is "something we want to see not treated as an
objective truth," Dick said.

Gregg said Wednesday's hearing was one of a series
that will focus on the issue of academic freedom.
Future subjects will include textbooks and the
accreditation process in higher education, he said.

Many academics disagree with the positions expressed
by the witnesses at the hearing.

Judith Wegner, a law professor and chairwoman of the
faculty at the University of North Carolina at Chapel
Hill, said students sometimes attribute objective
criticism of their work to disagreement with their
ideas, and they sometimes are taught by teaching
assistants who have not yet developed adequate skills
for presenting all sides of an issue.
"I really don't think there's a witch hunt going on"
for conservatives on campus, Wegner said in a
telephone interview.

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