Why Liberal Arts Schools Like Evergreen Would Benefit from Conservative Professors

Comments

1

Woke Liberalism is literally perfect, it's the best worldview ever invented, and will left billions out of poverty and into being global citizens, who feel just as safe and secure as the most privileged people in this world. It's a ideology with simply no blind spots. It's very important for ourselves, and more importantly our children, to absolutely eliminate any other world views.

2

It is fortunate that Hadley's 100% accurate and 100% unbiased account made it unnecessary for Herzog to follow up on other perspectives on the events he describes.

3

This is an incredibly slanted view of what happened at Evergreen. The whole affair was messy and there were no real good guys in it, and that includes Weinstein. Don't try to make him out to be some kind of free speech martyr, he was someone who said some dumb shit, had it blow up in his face and then went to cry to Fox News.

Like this isn't about taking the students side, or taking Weinstein's side, it's just about telling the whole fucking story instead of telling an obviously biased account to try and prove a point.

I took Herzog's side when the Detransitioners article came out, the backlash against that article was totally unjustified. But it's clear that the fallout has turned her into kind of a shit journalist. Fire her already.

4

I didn't know Slog started syndicating Daily Caller articles

5

Is Herzog the Stranger's Libertarian-in-Residence?

6

@3: "She was a good journalist when she said things I agreed with, but when she said things I disagreed with, she became a bad journalist."

7

My sibling is a professor in CA. I lost hope regarding the newer generation when she told me that as a TA she never used red ink grading papers. I found this odd, especially since I work and write for lawyers...very fond of editing and editing and editing my work...in red ink. "Huh - why is that?" I asked. 'Oh its too upsetting so we only use blue".

I'll never forget pondering how something that happened to me daily at work, and was only annoying when really excessive, was considered such a harm to a college student. That was at least 12 years ago. All the rest of this stuff is just piling on, making anyone under 30 or so look weaker, and less and less capable, of dealing with the world.

I present to you our future: thin skinned whiners that can't stand the emotional impact of having their spelling corrected in red ink. How confident are YOU that people like this can function as leaders, making tough decisions. Yeah, I can't imagine it either.

8

Oooh a Herzog article on Evergreen, this comment board is going to be lit!

9

Policing subjective microaggressions does not seem like a route to success in a world literally run by Donald Trump's deliberate and targeted macroagression. I have a friend right now being actively bullied in local politics and microaggressions are just not in it.

10

ps-> I reject out of hand the concept of affirmative action for conservative faculty though, I mean come on, either a person can do the job at the university/college, and they will get hired and then get tenure, or they cannot. Pretty much the only criterion for tenure, once hired, is collegiality itself, by the way, so bullying is kind of ruled out at that point (although tenure-track faculty can still be bullied by the tenured whose votes they need).

11

lol did she actually build an entire article on a disgruntled teens youtube account? this is truly amazing, even for Herzog

12

@7, not really the type of mental that is going to storm a beachhead to save Europe from real life Nazi's.

Though I think it has less to do with being triggered and more to do with a group of kids who have never been told no in their lives so they are used to crying and getting their way. Simply put: they are spoiled brats.

13

Why Katie Herzog Would Benefit From Unemployment.

15

"they will be unable to effectively counter those opinions when they graduate and leave college"

No, but they'll be perfectly prepared to call everyone they disagree with "Nazis" on social media.

16

@3: "there were no real good guys in it, and that includes Weinstein"

As an undergrad at U Penn, Weinstein stepped into controversy by reporting a fraternity that hired black prostitutes for some kind of horrible racist show they put on every year.

The stance he took at Evergreen was that it was not OK to single out people by race and insist that they NOT attend classes. He's absolutely right.

17

@12: "they are spoiled brats"

Starting with the baby boomers, we've become a nation of spoiled brats. Who knows, the way the world is heading we may all understand real suffering soon enough.

18

I doubt there are any good actors in the Evergreen story. Writing the Weinsteins have produced for outlets like Quillette have revealed that they're kind of shit people (for me).

The argument for mircoaggressions is about psychology. An environment that's alienating is stressful and mentally damaging regardless of intent, and that does deserve attention and correction.

The concept that needs to be thrown out in light of the psychological evidence is "white fragility." Honestly when people talk about microsggressions and white fragility in the same breath I want to scream, "PEOPLE CAN FUCKING HEAR YOU!"

There are numerous advantages that come with white privilege, but some super advanced neuropsychology isn't one of them. If you say something hurtful, crass, and offensive, people's feeling will be hurt and they will get angry. And how they are treated in grocery stores or at post offices isn't part of the equation...because people. When people talk about white fragility they are [A] ignoring reality and [B] endorsing collective punishment as an excuse for being callous and mean spirited.

Plus [C] ignoring Class and aiding our capitalist overlords. And Charles does it when he blames climate change on Whiteness like the working poor of rural America are flush with low carbon options.

20

Remember, conservatives are all for the principle of Freedom of Speech at colleges and universities - unless it has something to do with faculty or students being sanctioned for speech relating to Palestine or the BDS movement.

20

the conservatives fucked us on a number of cynical wars, and are way off base with their religiosity regarding abortion and gun rights, but goddamned if a broken clock isn't right sometimes.

21

@17, good point, the Boomers really were America's first "Me Me, I'm First" generation. It just seems to get a little worse with each passing generation.

22

@5: If so, why would that be of a concern to you? Do you think she couldn't be objective?

23

And in the comments, we see that an increasing segment of the so-called left are utterly pathetic, worthless wusses who embrace their failure as good. They've gone from calling anyone they disagree with a "Racist" to a "Nazi." I expect by 2020 they'll have to call us "Gay Communists," because where else can you escalate from "Nazi"?

In fact, their own attitudes are in lockstip with the actual Nazis, right down to book burning, violence, fabricated victimhood and the salute.

When the death camps actually come, it will be "tolerant" "liberals" trying to stuff everyone else in.

25

@22

Is this post objective?

26

What percentage of this reporting would need to be "true" to reasonably equate this code of conduct with the same kind of paradigm found at Bob Jones University, BYU, Notre Dame, and other faith-based campuses? Asking for a friend.

27

From what I understand, enrollment is now down at Evergreen as a result of this stuff and it may be at risk of losing its accredidation. That makes me sad, as it seems like such a great school, and there aren't that many places like it across the country.

I recently suggested to a friend from out of state that his kid should look at it, as it seemed to align with her needs. They did visit, and liked a lot about it. But the dad decided, given the current climate, that it wasn't a good option. He said "If it was ten years ago, I bet it would have been a great place for her, but things feel too unstable there right now."

For those who think I'm full of shit, it's worth reviewing the history of the 1968 student strike at Antioch College, the school that inspired the creation of most of the US colleges like Evergreen in the 1960s (e.g., UC Santa Cruz, Johnston College at University of Redlands, Residential College at U of Michigan, etc.).

There a reasonably good argument to be made that the events in 1968 started a death spiral for Antioch, which eventually led to the main campus in Yellow Springs closing completely for a while (it's been recently reborn, but its status remains tenuous).

From a 1982 WAPO article on the strike: "The hard-learned lesson of the time is that "openness and desire and genuine commitment to student participation doesn't always work." Goldberg adds, "I think we saw a real breakdown in those years of representative democracy."

https://www.washingtonpost.com/archive/lifestyle/1982/08/29/antioch-colleges-hard-learned-lesson/d2db6029-a30e-4e7a-ab39-7da40bc874af/?utm_term=.264d0f00eaf9

28

@26 Bob Jones, BYU, and Notre Dame are private. Evergreen is public. Nice try tho.

29

When you become an adult, who would you rather work with or for, the balanced and thoughtful Mr. Hadley interviewed above, or the screamers we saw at Evergreen in 2016?

BTW by “conservative” I’m pretty sure Herzog means classical leftwing, not the new lunatic intersectional, “only the three legged transgendered black midgets with autism can speak" left wing.

30

“Nobody ever insisted people not attend classes. That's a lie, and Weinstein went on white supremacist fake news media to race bait about it.”

Three legged black midget with autism:

“Yeah right. Sure, you can attend class, just remember whitey, you’ll be called a racist for not going with the program. Have a great day!”

31

Thank Katie. Great piece.

32

@25: Considering a range of comments like from @4 to @31- yes.

33

This was a good piece. I only got skin deep in the Evergreen conflict before I could see something had gone terribly wrong with those students. Concepts like cultural appropriation and microagressions are abstract and when young people can't deal with anything but absolutes, it's gonna go off the rails.

The world is a rough place and making safe spaces for ANYONE and dictating speech is a very bad idea.* The way you deal with PTSD is exposure. The road to liberation is, to some extent, about getting you to a place of empowerment where you can take it and recover. The world never stops punishing you.

*you should punch Nazis because they're trying to terrorize and intimidate.

34

Herzog is being quite the rebel these days--- relatively speaking.

35

@32

Drawing a range of opinions is your standard for objectivity?

Then saying RITDMFOTP is probably an objective statement, right?

36

@35: Feedback is one of the established metrics, unscientific as it is. Can you think of anything else that would measure the objectivity of this article?

37

@36

For starters, see @2 and recognize that it is sarcastic.

38

"established metrics"

@36 The use of "metrics" is culturally biased against black and brown people and part of white supremacy and white colonial oppression.

39

@18, I read a few articles and tweets from weinstein and his wife and was also underwhelmed. They certainly seem to be impressed with themselves tho.

@36, Reader response is not a metric of objectivity. If the author presents conflicting viewpoints on the subject matter and leaves it up to the reader to draw their own conclusions, their reporting is objective: student A thinks evergreen is bad because X; student B thinks evergreen is great because Y. If only one side is represented the article is not objective. Presenting the viewpoint from a person of color who thinks evergreen is sheltering its students is certainly a novel approach to objectivity but it doesn’t exactly fulfill the criteria. All that said, it’s an opinion piece, so it doesn’t have to be objective.

40

I got bored at "liberal arts schools."

41

@33 Concepts like microagressions are NOT abstract. There's psychological research to back up the negative effects of being alienated. We should focus on making people less alienated, which we can do in education if we stop attacking each other.

42

@38: That's rich.

@39: Yes, it doesn't have to be objective. We shouldn't conflate the quest to be objective from the actual result. As long as the writer strives for that trust, their inherent ideology is inconsequential.

43

Note: Not defending the dirty-clean-gate. That was BS, but questioning if any of these dichotomies are real or not is classic college goodness.

44

I'm reading the book Herzog draws from here, and they and she are both guilty of the kind of sloppiness they accuse others of.

She and they glibly say "oh I guess impact matters more than intent" and I have to say "yeah. Do you understand what the word implicit in 'implicit bias' means?"

They accuse "liberals" of twisting narratives to fit their worldview, but then they spout the line about faculty rations without considering why the ratios shift. Is it that schools only hire those who identify as liberal? Or could it be conservatism and education aren't particularly amenable? That the general population leans further left? That labels have shifted more than actual ideology? No, the only consider an explanation that fits their story.

I am going to finish the book because as a college educator I need to know what kind of bullshit I am fighting, but Herzog is just a schlocky journalist, sloppy to a fault, instigator of clicks with no merit. This is the last time I fall for it.

45

I just started school at Evergreen and the first people I talked to in my class were a young, single mom who is a libertarian and the second person was a Republican military veteran. That is just my experience in a single class I took. Katie clearly doesn't want to look beyond her notion of what Evergreen is based on her understanding of the Weinstein situation. There are all kinds of people going to school here but that would challenge her view of the school, so she ignores that aspect of it. Nor does she provide context for the larger attacks on the school. Interestingly, Fox News published an article today that reads almost exactly this article and posts went up on both the Seattle and Olympia Reddits in which trolls are out in full force attacking Evergreen. To which I say if it bothers Katie and trolls that much it must be doing something right.

47

If you think that the words "dirty" and "clean" aren't loaded with anything read Carl A. Zimring's book "Clean and White: A History of Environmental Racism in the United States"

https://www.amazon.com/Clean-White-History-Environmental-Racism/dp/147987437X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1536868376&sr=8-1&keywords=clean+and+white

49

46 - I was a tiny bit scared of the alt-right showing up on campus and guys threatening to shoot up students after watching Fox News, but nice way to twist my comments from months ago.

50

@GermanSausage: "Nobody ever insisted people not attend classes. That's a lie"

White kids were given the choice of skipping classes or face being stigmatized and harassed as racists. That's a fact, and Weinstein is on the correct side of the argument.

"and Weinstein went on white supremacist fake news media to race bait about it"

The outrage here is that every other mainstream media outlet was too chickenshit to pick up his story.

52

Yes, maintaining professorial political diversity generally helps students rigorously question, test, and evaluate. The larger conflicts here, though, are philosophy versus indoctrination, free speech versus propaganda, fair-minded acceptance of human fallibility versus purist intimidation of anyone committing the slightest perceived error. Neither the left nor the right is free from stereotyping, pettiness, and prejudice. And professorial ideological diversity is a healthy check-and-balance against stereotyping and dogmatism. At core, though, this shouldn't be about slice-'em, dice-'em right/left percentages of who works on campus--but hiring and supporting fair-minded, capable faculty who promote honest, rigorous testing and dialogue. Right, left, or center, we're all flawed, fallible human beings--and this in itself is the greatest argument for compassion, no matter your political stance.

53

@52 Reasonableness is a tool white supremacists use to murder black and brown bodies.

Your reasonableness is a clear first sign you're a racist and a fascist.

Reasonableness = hate crime.

54

you seem reasonable

55

German Sausage out here showing his ass per usual. It's just the best.

56

@52 - very well put. This purity quest shit is out of hand. Any time a leader in power yearns for 'purity' in it people, it goes horribly wrong. Who else in world history can we think of that was obessed with purity...hmmm?

57

FuckYourWhiteTears

58

@44 So you're saying impact is more important than intent?

So if I ask an Asian person where they are from/originate from or are they Korean, is that a microaggression?

59

The "woke" far left has much more in common with far right conservatives than actual liberals who appreciate liberty, reason, and the Enlightenment. Very similar authoritarian impulses, unfalsifiable anti-science dogma, and desire for moral purity.

60

The reason the ratio of intersectionalist left faculty has increased is very clearly because they gave a fuck about increasing their numbers and did everything they could to influence hiring. Every one else didn't want to waste the bandwidth fighting them down as much as they wanted to control the politics of higher education. They had an interest and everyone else had only an opinion, and tenure so, ya know, fuck it I'll nod and finish out my career how I please.

61

insensitive 58. I recommend this: "I'll tell you my ethnicity if you tell me yours." Do it in a growly whisper and then purr enthusiastically like a kitten being stroked. Guaranteed to start a lively conversation.

Alternately, what's it to you what someone's specific area of origin is? Asking makes it seem like an exotic curiosity. You are in a way telling that person that they are non-standard. So don't ask. If you need to know for when you are masturbating later or something you can just make something up - try Korean-Pakistani or Northern and Southern Chinese. Meeeeeeeeoooooow.

62

@19 C'mon. There's a pretty low bar for honesty here at slog.com, but this really takes the case.

63

@47 Horseshit.

That's an example of reaching for the most offensive reading possible instead of assuming positive intent, and it's going to make you unemployable if you aren't already. Grow the fuck up.

64

"If you think that the words "dirty" and "clean" aren't loaded "

So when I tell my 4 year old kid they're "dirty" and to take a bath, I'm calling them "n*"?

Wow, what should I say that's less triggering?

Filthy?

Smells like shit? Looks like something the cat dragged in?

Let me know because I never knew "dirty" was triggering.

65

I'm all for embracing cultural diversity and crossing the aisle, but how does one reason with a rabid, hate-spewing, MAGA hat wearing, AK-47 toting neo-nazi pro-Trumpist?

66

@59 How right you are. And how sad that is. Keep 'em coming Katie. The Left (of which I am a part of) needs to be reminded of reason and how that makes us different than the fascists.

67

How about, in a video production course, we teach people how to shoot, edit, and produce videos?

I mean, why the heck was that exercise even happening in that classroom? It’s a total and complete waste of time and tuition.

68

On the topic of “microaggresions,” are we not allowed to express interest in another human being and request information about their personal history as we get to know them? Because “Where are you from?” is a pretty basic getting-to-know-you question.

This kind of nonsense actually reinforces segregation and racial antipathy. Why should I seek out interaction and friendship from people of different backgrounds if I can’t be sure if the response to my “Where do you come from?” question will be either “Upstate New York, how about you?” or “HOW DARE YOU MAKE ASSUMPTIONS ABOUT ME! YOU DON’T KNOW ME! GET AWAY FROM ME YOU ALT-RIGHT TRUMP-LOVING NAZI WIFE-BEATER!”

Although it is true that a response of, “Erm, actually I’m from Canada, eh?” kinda works in both scenarios.

69

I've recently come "out of the closet" to embrace a part of me that had remained hidden all these years. Toilet paper oppresses me and I wish it would go back to wherever it came from. I am a proud wipe supremist. Wipe power all the way! Toilet paper is lazy and just doesn't want to clean my soiled butt the way I deserve to be cleansed. Wipe pride!

70

You might find this video by Haidt, given at Duke, worth a watch:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gatn5ameRr8

71

I just tried to post a link to Jon Haidt and a lecture he gave at Duke on these issues in universities. Because it was a link it did not post. So do a search for him on Youtube
Haidt Hayek Lecture Duke

and it will show up in multiple places. Enjoy

72

Guess it did post after all.

73

" a rabid, hate-spewing, MAGA hat wearing, AK-47 toting neo-nazi pro-Trumpist?"

Bret Weinstien campaigned for Bernie Sanders. Nice straw man though

74

Evergreen has such a unique class structure that works great for students that don’t learn well in the traditional, more structured mold. It would be a shame if that went away.

I went to a liberal arts college that had an even liberal-conservative split of professors which was fine. It was overall a more passive, apathetic student body than Evergreen though. And problems (like bomb threats and bad press) only came up when a certain conservative professor ran to Fox News over an invited speaker or guest lecturer.

75

@73 your hole makes you a space case: Were you at Joey Gibson's hate rally on August 18th in downtown Seattle, by any chance? Was that you wearing the spiked helmet with the chicken feathers? Did you wildly cheer when the MAGA cap wearer from Chicago made a desperate pilgrimage--something he felt took courage---came all the way to liberal Seattle just to stir up trouble? How many progressive protesters voting Democrat do you see out threatening lives, damaging property, promoting violence, fear, mass destruction, and chaos?
Oh, gee......crickets! Yeah--I didn't think so.

76

Okay, so you guys fucked up your coverage of this the first time around, and now you're doubling down. Good to know.

My daughter was in the Mediaworks program at TESC last year. And you know what they taught? Media production. That's what she graduated with: a BA in Media Production. Good enough to get her a coveted video production internship at NBC this past summer.

So instead of Slog pandering to the right-wing echo chamber with this bullshit self-loathing moralizing, I suggest folks read some real coverage of what happened at Evergreen in 2017: HOW RIGHT-WING MEDIA HAS TRIED TO STIFLE STUDENT SPEECH AT EVERGREEN STATE COLLEGE

https://psmag.com/education/the-real-free-speech-story-at-evergreen-college

77

@73 I don't think @65 was necessarily referring to Weinstein, but the fact that he campaigned for Bernie Sanders (whom I also voted for but whose base of support, unlike HRC's, was almost entirely white) does not excuse or even mitigate his behavior. He deliberately mischaracterized the protest and then further debased himself by encouraging the right-wing media to lionize him as a free-speech martyr. (To me the latter offense was more odious than the former, though reasonable people may well disagree.)

78

Colleges started out as places where the upper classes sent their kids to learn how to talk and how to act. They learned the prevailing manners and mores of the ruling class as well as the body of knowledge in which they would be expected to be conversant. Other members of the upper crust could know within one minute of cocktail party conversation if they were speaking to a social equal. Where did you go to school? What do you think of [name of author only college graduates are likely to know]?

In the Post WWII GI Bill-era USA, colleges went through something of a populist makeover, occupying a space somewhere between the upper-crust finishing school model and trade schools for the aspiring managerial class.

We seem to be coming full circle. If the hundred thousand dollars you spend on college doesn't get you a job that allows you to pay back the hundred thousand dollar student loan, it's a losing game for all but the children of the rich. The children of the rich, for their part, will continue to preferentially network with classmates and other social equals, so a degree from a Good School will continue to have value as much for the doors it opens as for the knowledge it imparts.

79

Katie, Bret and his supporters didn't "get harassed" just because "he gave an interview on Fox News". Bret received blowback because he said nothing when Tucker Carlson claimed whites were "banned from campus" on the Day of Absence. We weren't-I can say this with absolute certainty because I was and am a white student at Evergreen and was on campus at 5:30 that day, and because 90% of Evergreen students(on a 90% white campus) WERE, in fact, on campus that day.

Bret also received blowback(nothing really happened to the guy, after all), because he never denounced the right-wing maniacs who doxxed students of color and antiracist activists after the library protest.

I don't defend every choice made by those who confronted Bret in the hallway that day, but it does have to be said

And TESC has never had a ban on conservative faculty members or anything-it's just that conservative faculty members tend not to wish at educational institutions with an egalitarian model of education, a model in which instructors ask their students to address them on a first-name basis-note, this is somewhat different at the Evergreen Tacoma Campus, where a large number of faculty and students are people of color and the custom in that community is to us more formality in the classroom-where students are encouraged to offer their own original intellectual observations rather than just write down what the instructor says as if it is Holy Writ simply because it passes through the instructor's lips, where methods of learning other than just rote memorization of facts are encouraged, and where students are encouraged to find original forms to convey what they have learned. There's been no reverse McCarthyism-there has only been a refusal by most conservative intellectuals and academics to be open to teaching and learning as people do at TESC.

To be a conservative has historically meant to be a fierce defender of "tradition"-or, at least, that which has been defined as traditional by those who think every intellectual question was answered once and for all by white Northern Europeans in the 18th and 19th centuries, often while providing academic justification for the defense of as many non-European, non "Judeo-Christian" traditions in as many non-European, non-"Judeo-Christian" countries as possible-so it's fairly unlikely that many of them would want to teach at an institution which exists to challenge the Anglo-European notion of tradition. There's been no academic censorship, there's been no "reverse McCarthyism"-it's just that most conservative professors realize that they'd never be able to achieve the one thing they'd want to achieve at Evergreen: turning the place into the Hillsdale College of the Northwest-to turn it into an institution in which teaching would simply be catechism classes for The Church Of The Eternal Bland White Christian Heterosexual Capitalist Sameness.

80

And as several others here have said, Bret Weinstein is not a "conservative"-he's an insensitive, tone-deaf stereotypical "liberal elitist" who doesn't seem to realize the damage he does with the things he says about people he should be fighting for and listening to.

For example, there was no excuse for him to use a phrase like "let's put phenotype aside", when responding to students of color whose lives are defined by:
A) The refusal of the power structure, especially the law-enforcement power structure, to put phenotype aside when dealing with people who are of a different phenotype than that power structure feels comfortable around, and

B) A political power-structure currently dominated by an empathy-free, failed insult-comic demagogue, who's central argument is that people who don't have pale phenotype are all getting special favors while the palephenos-especially the straight male palephenos are somehow being persecuted and oppressed.

Bret also largely caused the confrontation with the students outside his classroom-rather than just saying, as he should have said, "ok, it's time for me to just sit and listen to what you all have to say", he tried to "run the meeting" and set rules for what was and was not going to be done, which was not an appropriate thing for him to do-he said "I'm not going to let you critique me, let's dialectic", by which meant he wanted to DEBATE what they had to say. This was arrogant and dismissive, and while it was probably a mistake for that large of a group of people to approach him, it antagonized the group when what he should have done was simply to make himself willing to listen.

81

16 And nobody did that. Nobody ordered or pressured anyone to not show up for a class based on race. The only people who weren't on campus on the DOA-other than those who'd have taken the occasion of a nice sunny day to go hiking or swimming or find some other excuse to cut class-were the white students who VOLUNTEERED to go to off-campus workshops about racism-and there were only space for 200 people in that workshops. Tucker Carlson lied-whites were NOT "banned from campus". And Bret knew he lied and did nothing to repudiate the lie when he was sitting right next to Tucker on live national television. If you respect the truth, Katie, why stand with the guy who did that?