31 May 2014

Modern Academia - The Home Of Repression?

Speaking to graduates at Harvard University on Thursday morning, former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg -- no conservative he -- warned against the consequences of intolerance on college campuses. Not only did he warn those in attendance of falling prey to intolerance, but he warned against the growing disease that plagues college campuses; that is, the repression of conservative ideology.
I (and many others of course), have been saying for years that academia suppressed conservative thought and expression and that intolerance DID extend to the classroom and that many college campuses have become indoctrination camps where conformity in worldview is expected. Flat-Earth academics used to come here and argue that I was erecting straw-men and that no such intolerance existed in the classroom. (That they would expose and embarrass themselves by making such a claim was quite astonishing to me and, I believe, reveals their ignorance at best, their complicity at worst.)

Now comes one of the Titans of modern progressivism (aka, liberalism) scolding academia for its intolerance and suppression of diverse thought and ideology. Considering the source, Bloomberg's condemnations are rather damning. Of course, rigid adherence to worldview, ideology and perspective extends to Civil War historiography. Here's some of Bloomberg's more pointed remarks:
We cannot deny others the rights and privileges that we demand for ourselves. And that is true in cities and it is no less true in universities where the forces of repression appear to be stronger now, I think, than at any time since the 1950s.
There is an idea floating around college campuses, including here at Harvard, I think, that scholar should be funded only if they’re work conforms to a particular view of justice. There’s a word for that idea; censorship and it is just a modern form of McCarthyism.

Think about the irony: In the 1950s, the right wing was attempting to repress left wing ideas. Today, on many college campuses, it is liberals trying to repress conservative ideas even as conservative faculty members are at risk of becoming an endangered species. And that is probably nowhere more true than it is here in the Ivy League. In the 2012 presidential race, according to Federal Election Commission data, 96% of all campaign contributions from Ivy League faculty and employees went to Barack Obama. 96%. There was more disagreement among the old Soviet politburo than there is among Ivy League donors. And that statistic should give us some pause. I say it as someone who endorsed President Obama for reelection. Let me tell you something, neither party has a monopoly of truth or God on its side. When 96% of Ivy League donors prefer one candidate to another, you really have to wonder whether students are being exposed to the diversity of views [I don't have to wonder] that a great university should offer. Diversity of gender, ethnicity, and orientation is important, but a university cannot be great if its faculty is politically homogenous.
Great universities should not become predictably partisan. And a Liberal Arts education must not be an education in the art of liberalism. The role of universities is not to promote an ideology [it is today]. It is to provide scholars and students with a neutral forum for researching and debating our issues without tipping the scale in one direction or repressing unpopular views.
If a university thinks twice before inviting a commencement speaker because of his or her politics, censorship and conformity, the mortal enemies of freedom win out.
A university's obligation is not to teach students what to think, but to teach students how to think. And that requires listening to the other side, weighing arguments without prejudicing them. And determining if the other side actually made some fair points. If the faculty fails to do this, it is the responsibility of the administration and governing bodies to step in and make it a priority. If they do not - if students graduate with ears and minds closed, the university has failed both the students and society. [Yes, epic fail.]
Here's some video of Bloomberg's speech:

I find it fascinating that much of modern academia is absolutely obsessed with past "oppressions and injustices" while simultaneously promoting, supporting and defending modern oppressions and injustices [in more ways than demonstrated here]. Where I come from, we call that hypocrisy. And where I come from, we also tend to laugh at the pontificating and moralizing of hypocrites. 


29 May 2014

Education Establishment - Epic Fail, Again

I've read a number of academic historians and educators criticize Bill O'Reilly for what he produces in the realm of history. Fair enough. Well, here's what some educators are producing in the realm of history. I think they've got their own, uh, problems:

27 May 2014

Remains Of 40 Confederate Soldiers Discovered

Their remains sat, unmarked, in shallow graves at the Old City Cemetery in Lynchburg, Va., for decades. Now, some 150 years after the Civil War, the bodies of 40 Confederate soldiers discovered over the past two months will receive a proper memorial.
Story here.

26 May 2014

Remember Me? I Died For My Country

I've posted this story before, but thought a re-post would be appropriate for today.

Number 91 on a weathered, lonely, blank headstone; a shared grave with two other men. Not much of a tribute for someone who was a POW and died for his country. For 140 years my family knew nothing of what happened to my great-great grandfather, John Meredith Crutchfield. We did know that Grandpa Crutchfield left the family farm, walked to Gauley Bridge, Virginia (West VA today) and enlisted with the 60th Virginia Infantry, Company F at the beginning of the war. He owned no slaves. He simply wanted to defend his home. He was wounded at the Battle of Piedmont in the Shenandoah Valley (just a few minutes from my home here in Augusta County), taken prisoner by the Federals and transported to the infamous POW Camp Morton in Indiana where prisoners received cruel treatment at the hands of Union soldiers.

Transferred to Chimborazo Hospital in March of 1865 in a prisoner exchange, my grandfather died there on March 28. There, the story ended – or so the family thought. John Crutchfield’s widow died years later not knowing what had become of him. Had he deserted? Had he run off with another woman? Had he been killed in battle? No one knew until the 1950’s when my great aunt discovered the information about the Battle of Piedmont and Chimborazo. But the family still did not know what became of his body. Where was he buried or was he buried? Then I wrote an article for the Washington Times’ Civil War column detailing some of my grandfather’s story. The story was read by a gentleman in Richmond; a fellow Sons of Confederate Veterans member. This man was working on the restoration of Oakwood Cemetery in Richmond. This cemetery, where many Confederate veterans are buried, had fallen into shameful neglect in recent years. I was contacted by this gentleman and he told me that he knew for a fact that John Meredith Crutchfield was buried at Oakwood – family mystery solved. The photograph of Oakwood shown here was taken in April of 1865, just after my grandfather would have been buried. Almost exactly 140 years after the fact, John Meredith Crutchfield’s family now knows where his grave is. Grandpa Crutchfield has never before had someone from his family visit his grave, weep over his death, honor his sacrifice, or place flowers upon his final resting place. That is about to change. I love history. And I love the God of history who providentially shows us what we need to know to honor our fathers.

PS: I'd thought I'd lost a box of old photographs and diaries, etc from my grandfather's (Fred Busic) service in WWII, along with those of his brother, Pat. Quite providentially, my wife just found the whole box in my closet - on Memorial Day! How about that?! My grandfather served in Egypt and Germany. My great-uncle Pat served in the Philippines. Some of the photographs are of rather gruesome executions by beheading. Others are of dead soldiers and blown up tanks and equipment. I may post some of them later. Gotta think about that for a while.

24 May 2014

Are You A Virginian? Tell Your Story

New England Public Schools Indoctrinating In Religion?

Not the Christian religion, of course. That would never be allowed. Parents claim something else, and are suing:
The parents, identified only as John and Jane Doe, say their older daughters — now ages 22 and 19 — started acting differently while attending the school, becoming "secretive," "reclusive," and "distant"; having "fantasies of suicidal ideation and martyrdom"; speaking in a strange language; and gathering at Wellesley College in Massachusetts with other girls to perform religious "whirling dervish" dances through the night. . . . The teachers also tried to indoctrinate the Does' now-16-year-old daughter into their "coven," the lawsuit states, but she was able to "break free," NBC Connecticut reports, and that's when her parents realized what was going on.
Funny, when we get these kind of complaints down here in the South, it's usually over a teacher or a coach leading students in prayer, or reading the Bible, or teaching creationism - you  know, truly disturbing stuff like that. But in New England, where they're so much smarter than us ignorant Bible-thumping Southerners, they don't have that problem.

"But he that sinneth against me wrongeth his own soul: all they that hate me love death." ~ Proverbs 8:36

Story here.

23 May 2014

Academic Historian Reveals Why He Helped Write Common Core

At least he's honest. The flat-earthers will continue to deny that the educational establishment has been thoroughly and completely politicized with progressive ideology. It's not really about education (or history), it's about social justice.

Ironically, the $28,535 per year Derryfield School that Dr. Pook teaches at considers the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) inferior and does not use them on the student body that is 91% white.
Well of course. Source. Thank God there are brave and competent teachers who have been on the front line and are battling the corruption. Actually, it's not just about social justice, it's also about money - lots of it.

21 May 2014

We're All Honor Students Now

Citing concerns about the "exclusive nature" of the annual honors night at Archie R. Cole Middle School, school officials have decided to scrap the tradition.
School administrators are doing a great disservice to students with these kinds of action.  What a shock awaits these students when they have to cope in the real world where nature and market forces enforce an "exclusive nature". Surreal.

17 May 2014

The Bible Makes Man Stealing A Capital Offense

I recently read a historian claim that "there were no biblical sanctions" against slavery. While that is correct technically speaking, I believe the truth is a bit more complicated in regards to how American slavery would fare in God's judgment - as well as slavery's ultimate compatibility with Christianity - due to how slavery in America came into being. At least that's the case examining American slavery in light of Scripture. As I pointed out in my book about Stonewall Jackson's black Sunday school class:
While many nineteenth-century Southern theologians went to great lengths to propound a biblical basis for slavery, and though neither Christ nor Paul ever directly condemned slavery, one cannot reconcile the broader themes of the gospel— liberty, peace, freedom from bondage, reconciliation, and brotherly love—with the institution of slavery. . . . To argue that slavery and Christianity could peacefully coexist denies the obvious. Since man-stealing and slave-trading was specifically condemned and punishable by death in the Old Testament (see Exodus 21:16: “He that stealeth a man, and selleth him, or if he be found in his hand, he shall surely be put to death”), American slavery was destined for God’s judgment from the beginning. Slavery is inherently accompanied by evils and mistrust. And race-based slavery is particularly evil and sinful. Man-stealing, coupled with the haughty, prideful spirit of superiority by nineteenth-century white Americans—North as well as South— invited the judgment of God. God visited the nation with a war that took more lives than all other American wars combined—decimating a generation of white Americans within four terrible years.

16 May 2014

Teacher & Asst. Principal Taking On The Education Establishment

Every parent and educator should watch this: a politically liberal educator (her blog is here) who agrees with Glenn Beck on many education issues. Quite interesting . . . and refreshing. The video below is about the debacle that is Common Core. She calls it "evil." As always, follow the money trail. "Failure drives the machine." Indeed. And in more ways than one. Please watch this eye-opening video.

15 May 2014

The Revolution In Higher Education

Is well underway and homeschooling has been a big part of that revolution. But the next senator from Nebraska gives additional insight into this game-changing development. Ben Sasse quotes Wall Street Journal research which predicts that half of all small colleges (1700) will cease to exist in the next decade. Economic realities have much to do with this, but the e-Revolution in learning is also a big part of this, as well as the fact a college education's value has been greatly diluted in recent decades. Except for fields like medicine, law, engineering, etc - the fields where advanced degrees are really necessary are shrinking, not growing (I recognize the caveat of employers using a bachelor's degree as a gate-keeper, but economic and other realities will ultimately change that as well). Add the politicization of the classroom to the mix and more parents are questioning the value of a college degree, not to mention the crushing debt that often comes with it. There are easier and much more efficient ways to learn - and without the indoctrination. 

This TED video is worth watching. I believe this guy is the real deal and I suspect we'll be hearing a lot more from Senator Sasse.

Rush Limbaugh - Author Of The Year Award

Rush Limbaugh for Rush Revere and the Brave Pilgrims: Time-Travel Adventures with Exceptional
The Children’s & Teen Choice Book Awards is the only national book awards program where the winning titles are selected by children and teens. Last year, over 1,000,000 votes were cast by young readers!
Rush Revere battles the enemies of American Exceptionalism and scores a victory!

14 May 2014

Speech Codes On Campus - The Realm Of The Inane

Is it any wonder that more and more people (outside the bubble that is academia) are snickering at the institutions of "higher learning"? This is the stuff of SNL skits.

13 May 2014

Died On The Field Of Honor Sir - 150th

Colonel Keith Gibson holds forth on the VMI cadets' bravery and sacrifice at the Battle of New Market. Worth watching. Hat tip to David Corbett.

12 May 2014

Honoring Our Fallen Confederates

In Pennsylvania . . . author Steve French was kind enough to alert me to the following and thought readers might be interested.
On June 14 @ 5 p.m., the Fulton County, Pa. Historical Society will be honoring the memory of two 18th Va. Cavalry troopers who were killed in a skirmish in the streets of McConnellsburg, Pa. (6-29-63). In 1929, two UDC chapters sponsored the construction of a monument to these men, where they are buried, just outside of town.
More here.

10 May 2014

African-American Lady Takes Down Confederate Soldier In Hokey Uniform

He has no answers for her arguments. So he tells her that "I have to to talk to one of my colleagues" - yes, one that won't make him look like a fool. What a buffoon.

One report notes the following about Democratic candidate for Wisconsin governor Brett Hulsey (the man in the Wal-Mart Halloween get up in the video below):
“A minority in the GOP is like a chicken at Colonel Sanders’ house,” Hulsey reportedly said. “They may feed you and let you crow a bit, but it does not end well.”
Stevens, [the African-American lady in the video below] who has reportedly been a GOP state delegate for four years, told the DCNF that Hulsey “believes he owns black people and we should all be on his plantation and like being repressed by him.”
It would appear Mr. Hulsey has gotten some tips from the Civil War blogosphere.

09 May 2014

Even More Hypocrisy In Academia

This is a follow up to a recent post.
Over the last several years, Jewish students on campuses across the country have been physically, emotionally, and intellectually harassed, intimidated, threatened, and bullied, not only by their fellow students but also by some of their professors . . . The official response to these episodes has been silence.
The information from the source of this quote is quite disturbing. Note this observation:
Students have reported feeling emotionally and intellectually harassed and intimidated by their professors, to the point that they are reluctant or afraid to express a view that is not anti-Israel in their classes. They are often afraid to come forward and confront the professor or complain to the university for fear of retaliation.
As I also pointed out recently, these intimidation tactics are particularly disgusting knowing they come from institutions and individuals who loudly proclaim their devotion to diversity and tolerance. 

It appears that tolerance and diversity often only applies to ideas which conform to academia's institutionalized ideology.

It is truly surreal. And it is truly disgusting and Un-American. Is it any wonder why many Americans have so little patience and respect for "professional" historians and bloggers who point fingers at others while they ignore this type of abuse occurring right in their own profession and under their noses. Quite frankly, they make me sick.

07 May 2014

More Threats Of Violence From Within Academia - Conform Or Get Out

A UC Santa Barbara student alleges her black studies professor warned any “Ted Cruz-supporting ‘tea baggers’ to get the hell out of his classroom before he sent them home to their mother in a body bag.” . . . the College Republican National Committee, strives to highlight the discrimination and intolerance conservative students face everyday on campuses nationwide.
That should keep them busy for a while. I remember a few academics used to come here and loudly protest accusations of politicization in college classrooms. Not so much anymore. Wise decision. Story here.

And, in the video below, you can hear first hand experiences from those being persecuted for their personal beliefs by "free-thinkers" in academia:

Real brave aren't they?  Students must truly feel threatened in an environment where disagreeing with the person who is clearly antagonistic toward their belief system, also holds the power to fail or pass them. Disgusting bullies.

05 May 2014

Christianity Is The Nation's Tradition

The Supreme Court said Monday that prayers that open town council meetings do not violate the Constitution even if they routinely stress Christianity. . . . Justice Anthony Kennedy, writing for the majority, said the prayers are ceremonial and in keeping with the nation's traditions.
Well, of course. (Story here.) I've argued that point here. My next post will continue this discussion.

Why Would Anyone Oppose This?

Despite outcries from evolutionists, the South Carolina Education Oversight Committee has approved new standards which would allow public school students to learn arguments both for and against evolution.
Maybe they're afraid they'll lose the argument. Story here.

More Anti-Christian Discrimination From A Public School Teacher

Officials at Broward County Public Schools banned a fifth grader from reading the Bible during “free reading” time, according to lawyers from the Liberty Institute who are threatening to sue the school for violating the First Amendment.

Giovanni Rubeo is a fifth-grade student at the school, who had been given a Bible at church as a Christmas gift. It’s his favorite book, so he decided he’d like to read it during the time in class where students are allowed to read anything they choose.

Swornia Thomas is Giovanni’s teacher. On April 8, Thomas told Giovanni he’s not allowed to read the Bible in her class and ordered him to put it away.
Story here.

An Oasis In The Progressive Desert

I'm sure most students of history are aware that there is a dearth of conservative perspective, thought and analysis when it comes to American history-related websites and blogs. Most blogs and sites are either obviously leftist/progressive or, while claiming to be apolitical, betray that claim on a daily basis with writing that would make Karl Marx smile in approval. Stating the obvious, this predicament is due, in large part, to the fact that academia is the womb of progressive and leftist ideology in the United States.

But some time ago I stumbled across a site that proudly proclaims its conservative bent with articles and perspectives reflecting the ideology of men like Edmund Burke, T.S. Eliot, Russell Kirk and Richard Weaver. Primarily featuring the thought and writings of conservative/libertarian academics (many with advanced degrees in history), it is indeed refreshing. And, despite the nod to Southern intellectuals, there is a recent piece asserting Lincoln was a conservative. And there are some well-reasoned rebuttals by readers.

So, with that being said, may I recommend The Imaginative Conservative to readers.

02 May 2014

Should Civil War Reenactments Simulate Life?

I’ve said it before, but I find most Civil War battle reenactments to be disrespectful to the memory of Civil War soldiers . . . It becomes problematic when reenactors cross the line from representing how units drilled and maneuvered on battlefields to simulating death. ~ Kevin Levin
Some folks might get the impression that Levin's hobby is disrespecting "the memory of [Confederate] Civil War soldiers". But, as to his complaint, what does he expect battlefield reenactments to simulate? The Blue and Gray didn't exactly meet on battlefields to practice the Virginia Reel.

Maybe Levin and the boys would prefer the reenactors all lay down their muskets, hold hands and sing Kumbaya. And do films and documentaries also "cross the line" when actors simulate death? Should Saving Private Ryan have all the death and violence edited out of it?

My suggestion would be not to attend reenactments if you don't like them. Good Lord. What a bizarre post.  

Academia: All Talkie & No Walkie?

From huge state universities to small colleges and the Ivy League, 55 schools across America are facing federal investigation for the way they handle sexual abuse allegations by their students. . . . Ivy League schools including Harvard, Princeton and Dartmouth are also on the list.
Story here.