Alone, but in the 'Right'.

Author:Vatz, Richard E.
 
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THERE HAS BEEN an increasing and unremitting effort to eliminate conservatives and conservative thought in the humanities and social sciences in the American academy. The bias against those on the right has been in evidence for decades, although its acceleration has been particularly salient since 2016, the year of the inception of "The Resistance," the movement of undeclared-declared war against Pres. Donald Trump and conservatives and conservatism by institutions that historically had prided themselves on unbiased political activity and analysis, including electronic and print journalism along with higher education.

Higher education supposedly is guided by two overarching values: supporting the marketplace of ideas and academic freedom. These values imply the god terms of higher education today--diversity and equity--applied to some but not all of its constituents.

To understand the profound hypocrisy in American society extant in an earlier era, let us channel the late civil rights advocate Pres. John F. Kennedy, who memorably declared, "Are we to say to the world--and much more importantly, to each other--that this is the land of the free, except for the Negro?" Today, he would be compelled to sub out the designation "Negro" for "conservatives."

How are conservatives and conservatism treated today in public colleges and universities? It is instructive to cite some survey results, revelatory of a consistent number of studies that have comparable findings. In 2016, Inside Higher Ed, in a comprehensive article about the threat to conservatives in higher education, highlighted a study in Econ Journal Watch that "considered voter registration of faculty members in selected social science disciplines (and history) at 40 leading American universities. The study found a ratio of 11.5 Democrats for every Republican in these departments." In History, it was 33.5 to one.

Then there is the ideological tolerance--or lack thereof--at public universities and major academic organizations. I am very familiar with Towson University, having taught there for almost 50 years, but I also am familiar with a number of colleges and universities around the country, having spoken at many and having been on the Legislative Assembly at the National Communication Association (NCA), and having been involved closely with the Eastern Communication Association (ECA), our top (academic and ethical)--along with the Southern States Communication Association--regional...

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