A high school diploma just doesn’t cut it in America anymore. Every year, more and more students are deciding to continue their educations at the college level. This is undoubtedly a good thing; with higher education, however, comes a Pandora’s box of dangerous, questionable, and all-too-readily swallowed values, warns Ben Shapiro, fresh out of UCLA at only 20 years of age.
Shapiro is particularly sensitive about the treatment of Israel in higher education. He decries the divestment campaigns—a call to cut ties with companies which invest in Israel—which have swept through Harvard, MIT, Princeton, the University of Michigan, and the University of California system.
“I’ve had an English professor compare the treatment of Palestinian Arabs to the treatment received by African slaves in 18th-19th century America; nobody in Israel is getting whipped in cotton fields, last time I checked,” he quipped.
Israeli politicians such as Benjamin Netanyahu and even the very liberal Ehud Barak are greeted by angry mobs when they come to speak at a university, while terrorist supporters such as author and activist Hannan Ashrawi are received with open arms, Shapiro says. He also questions the operations, financial and political, of the Muslim Student Association (MSA). Incidentally, so does the U.S. Senate Finance Committee, which has asked the IRS for the MSA’s tax records.
Promoting his new book Brainwashed: How Universities Indoctrinate America’s Youth at a July 8th Accuracy in Academia book forum also featuring conservative authors Mike Adams and Dan Flynn, Shapiro lamented the present state of universities, which he claims are teeming with ultra-liberal professors who espouse as incontrovertible truths what should be highly controversial anti-American theories.
Shapiro presents countless anecdotes in Brainwashed, both from his alma mater and from other institutions, demonstrating the moral relativism which, having already seeped into the veins of professors, threatens to pass on to unsuspecting students as well. Indeed, Shapiro’s biggest bone of contention is with this concept of “moral relativism,” a refusal to categorize any practice or ideology as inherently right or wrong. Terrorism, Shapiro complains, is rationalized, even excused, rather than condemned. “Moral relativism is a threat to Judeo-Christian values,” he stressed, freely admitting his vested interest as an Orthodox Jew.
The college atmosphere takes a heavy toll on religion, Shapiro maintains; 77 percent of high school graduates say they believe in God, compared with just 66 percent of college graduates. When the likes of Professor Peter Singer of Princeton University, a proud atheist who glorifies bestiality and argues for the individual’s right to kill disabled infants, are teaching young, impressionable minds, it is no wonder there is such a profound drop in faith.
The liberal leanings of college campuses simply do not match up with American demographics, Shapiro says. He cites the fact that 84 percent of Ivy League professors voted for Al Gore in 2000, whereas less than 50 percent of Americans voted for the Democrat. At Northwestern University (to name just one example), the student body is pro-Palestinian by a 10-percent margin; the wider U.S. population, however, is pro-Israel by a whopping 20-percent margin.
Highly skeptical of how much he actually learned in college, Shapiro plans to attend Harvard Law School this fall.
Michele Nagar, a rising freshman at the University of Maryland at College Park, is an intern at Accuracy in Academia.