Like all of you, we know that personally we have much to be thankful for. Oddly, what we have to be thankful for professionally is the politically correct colleges and universities that supply us with an unending stream of copy.
What follows are a few leftover nuggets from our research that, nonetheless, may provide a clue or two about what is happening on American college and university campuses. We submit these for your consideration and wish you and yours the happiest of Thanksgivings.
An Academic Take on Media Bias
An associate professor at Howard University in Washington, D. C. has actually noticed a pronounced media bias but it’s not the liberal one documented to a fare-thee-well by Accuracy in Media. “Women comprise more than half the population in the United States, and people of color are approaching half,” Dr. Carolyn Byerly notes on TomPaine.com. “Yet as we approach 2007, new studies reveal that women and minorities are making little progress in taking control of America’s broadcast media.”
What about Michelle Malkin, Laura Ingraham and Ann Coulter? Well, these may not be the kind of women that Dr. Byerly has in mind. “The power of the wealthy broadcasters resulted in two major policy decisions which have affected minority and women’s control of the airwaves,” she writes. “First, the suspension of the Fairness Doctrine in 1987, a regulation that required broadcasters to provide competing points of view on issues of public controversy.”
“ In years since, we have witnessed a dramatic increase in conservative commentators and talk show hosts—like Rush Limbaugh—and a gradual disappearance of public affairs programming in lieu of entertainment.”
While Cuban boat people continue to brave sharks, storms and hoses turned on them by the United States Coast Guard to get to America, at least one college thinks that the island dictatorship these refugees are escaping is a great place for American kids to study under Castro apparatchiks. Ohio Northern sent nine students to Cuba to study Environmental management.
“Visiting a third-world communist country is not the typical college study abroad program and to participate in an educational program in Cuba is even more rare,” an ONU press release proclaims. “Ohio Northern is one of a very small number of universities in the nation to be both licensed by the United States Treasury Department for such travel and under contract with the University of Havana.”
Nobel Prize-winning economist Milton Friedman never became the focus of a “Whatever became of” question. At the time of his recent death at age 94, he had just penned an article for the Wall Street Journal and was scheduled to be the guest of honor at a dinner.
Friedman was arguably the most notable of the Nobel Prize winners for economics in that past 30 years but shares two traits or fates with the others. All were free- market theorists still virtually ignored by the economics departments at most colleges and universities.
Unlike spokesmen for those alleged institutions of higher learning, Friedman never had to give tortured explanations as to why his work was relevant. And Friedman’s work and relevance live on—an enviable legacy.
Grammar without Gender
In a letter to the editor of the Chronicle of Higher Education, a University of California psychiatrist gives us an idea of just how far the Academic Left is willing to go to corrupt the English language. “My 18-year-old daughter, now a first-year student at Smith College, and I have long discussed the lack of gender-neutral third-person singular pronouns,” Ronald Elson writes. “We have come up with our own preferred pronouns, which I would like to offer for consideration for a national movement.”
“For the subjective case, we use ‘se’ (pronounced ‘see’), combining ‘she’ and ‘he’ and having the virtue of referencing the gender-neutral pronoun found in other languages,” Dr. Elson explains. “For the objective case, we particularly like ‘herm,’ which not only combines ‘her’ and ‘him’ but also lightly incorporates a reference to combining male and female.”
“Both sound similar enough to the traditional pronouns that they roll readily from the tongue and would make the transition from present pronouns easy.” Was he serious? Four words: he is from Berkeley.
Catholic U Correction
In 2005, I referred to the Catholic University of America (CUA) as a “Jesuit school.” A reader from CUA pointed out to me that the institution is not under the governance of any one particular order of Catholic priests.
Jesuits have presided over CUA’s affairs but the current prez is a Vincentian.
Malcolm A. Kline is the executive director of Accuracy in Academia.