Skip to comments.A Victory for Campus Diversity
Posted on 07/24/2008 9:52:11 AM PDT by rhema
Something very good has just taken place on a college campus. After a two-year ordeal orchestrated by a group of mutinous faculty members, the Ave Maria School of Law has been given a clean bill of health by the American Bar Association and can continue with its work. I spoke on the campus last autumn and departed burdened by gloom. I feared the mutineers might win. They were the typical professorial grumblers, and such unhappy philistines so often have the upper hand on campuses.
Truth be known, I spend very little time on college campuses. The life of the mind nowadays is celebrated so rarely in academe. A livelier cultural atmosphere can be found at a Starbucks cafe or health food emporium. On most university campuses, the bulletin boards sulk with notices about "Rape Awareness Week," "Anger Management Counseling," "The Readings of the Prophet Obama." A half-century ago, things were different. Learning was widespread on campus at least among the profs. Free thought was encouraged, even among the profs. In the humanities, there were distinguished professors, at least on the best campuses, where they wrote and taught and often seemed to live the good life. Even the faculty communists were relatively pleasant.
The university at the middle of the 20th century was a happy place, congenial to civilized thought. Today it is gloomy, populated particularly in the humanities by narrowly opinionated adepts of identity politics and sham studies: the feminists, the black-studies lecturers and other special interests too esoteric to mention. The prevalence of these irritable sciolists explains why in the nation today there are so few historians of the stature of, say, Arthur M. Schlesinger or Samuel Eliot Morison; political philosophers of the stature of Leo Strauss; or political scientists of the stature of Hans
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Stature of Art Schlesinger? I think that guy is a revisionist, especially when it comes to JFK.
Of course it's gloomy.
Liberals wallow in gloom.
“Stature of Art Schlesinger?”
Considre how far we have fallen that a flunkie from the New Deal who had his own prejudices about history can be considered by a conservative writer as one of the good guys. Schlesigner is a liberal but he too has gotten appalled by the bum’s rush given to Western Civ on campus.
“The Closing of the American Mind” is how Bloom described it, and it seems firmly shut by now on campus.
I remember when the goal of Iowa State University was excellence, now it is diversity.
I'm thrilled that the Ave Maria School of Law will be able to move to the location of the Ave Maria University! The town is beginning to grow, notwithstanding the problems with real estate in the rest of Florida. Our daughter will be entering her Junior Year at Ave Maria Univ. and loves the place. Her courses have been rigorous, and she's enjoyed the professors enthusiasm for their subjects.
Some of the disgruntled professors were worried that they wouldn't be able to afford homes in the Naples area, because the average price is very high. However, the school would not be IN Naples, it would be in the new town of Ave Maria, and the homes are in a wide range of affordability, from small to mid-sized neighborhood homes, to high end condos in the Piazza, overlooking the Oratory, to 'estate homes' which are to be built out by the planned golf courses. The town planners worked hard to make sure that the people who worked in the town would also be able to afford homes there.
Some of the professors who were against the move just didn't want to leave the places where they'd grown up, and where their families were. I can understand that, and if that's the case, they were free to look for employment elsewhere; as with most other employees in any business, they were not guaranteed jobs forever. I'm glad the problem has been resolved, though there was a lot of bitterness and rancor, which was not very Christian, much less Catholic.
Oh, and I hope Bob Tyrrell will visit Ave Maria University sometime. It might give him hope for the state of higher education.