Rights for the right

David Horowitz, advocate of the “academic bill of rights” is profiled by Chronicle of Higher Education. Horowitz’s bill “calls on public universities to expose students to a greater diversity of views in curricula, reading lists, and campus speakers. The document, which Mr. Horowitz wrote to stop what he sees as the rampant abuse of conservative students by liberal professors, also prohibits the grading of students and the hiring or firing of professors based on their political or religious beliefs.”

University officials say such rules already exist. Horowitz says the rules aren’t enforced. It’s hard to see how the “academic bill of rights” could be enforced either.

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  1. Richard Aubrey says:

    If the rules can’t be enforced, there’s no reason to resist them.
    Looks as if the professors are worried about something actually happening.

    Or perhaps the rules supposedly already in place aren’t.

  2. carpeicthus says:

    All he’s looking for is someone to demonize. I’m sure he’d love it if Liberty University couldn’t fire people for believing in radical concepts like evolution or carbon dating.

  3. SuperSub says:

    Depends on who’s passing the “Academic Bill of Rights.” IF its the school, then it will be a hollow document. If its the state the school is in, then the state will probably be able to punish any schools that don’t follow the document. Chances are it would be a withdrawal of funding, which, imo, is perfectly legal and just when a school does not function for the benefit of everyone within the state.

  4. Horowitz can’t look past his lefty origins to see the genius of the free market. He wants to dictate fairness which is roughly the equivalent of putting your thumb on the scale to offset someone else’s thumb on the opposite side of the scale; it’s a lousy way to weigh.

    The delightfully simple solution is to set up parallel, competing departments.

    If the lefties in the history department insist on teaching America the Vulgar, then the other history department sings from a different hymnal and the students decide.

    Of course the lefties will shriek their rage at paint-blistering levels but that’s a step up from the current situation where they don’t have to worry about students making the wrong choice because the students don’t have any choices.

  5. Ross the Heartless Conservative says:

    Actually, Horowitz is a big defender of Ward Churchill. I am not a huge fan of Horowitz because I think he plays a little to fast and loose with the facts at times. However, he does promote academic freedom in a consistent manner without regard to ideology.

    Unfortunately the University system is not a free market system. If the state would totally/largely get out of the education game and let the market forces determine the success or failure of each university then the current situation would not exist. Currently though the private universities have to compete against public universities that receive a huge government subsidy.

  6. Ross the Heartless Conservative wrote:

    Unfortunately the University system is not a free market system.

    I understand that but Horowitz’s solution is a further dose of authoritarianism. The vagueness of the wording of his “academic bill of rights” virtually invites a new, improved variety of diversity police. Since you can’t expect department heads to enforce a policy they’ve done their best to subvert, you need some other, certain-to-be impartial, authority.

    But just like you can’t tax your way to prosperity, you won’t create more freedom by creating more authoritarianism.

  7. Walter E. Wallis says:

    It is unprofessional conduct to run a partisan political campaign in a classroom. It is unprofessional to allow such conduct.