“I am somewhat in the closet,” Ben (not his real name) confesses to Chris Sweeney at Boston Magazine in a new book-length op-ed titled How Liberal Professors Are Ruining College. “I fear that many of my classmates would jump to conclusions about me should they all know I am a conservative.”
Ben is a freshman at Brandeis University. He recently found himself in an uncomfortable position when he claims a speaker at his school’s orientation “talked passionately” about the Black Lives Matter movement. He was again made to feel uneasy when his economics professor cracked a joke about Republicans during a lecture.
“I think it’s a shame,” he says. “A lot of people have negative preconceived notions about conservatives…we’re intolerant, racist, homophobic.”
Gee, we can’t imagine why. After all, it’s not like conservatives nominated (and elected) a man endorsed by the KKK and his stridently antigay running mate to the highest office in the land or anything. Oh, wait.
Mark Gimelstein, a senior at Brandeis, tells Sweeney that he, too, feels uneasy being a conservative on campus.
“Politics is something I don’t talk about with many people at all because of the ramifications,” he explains. “People mock us.”
He recalls an incident that happened in his Intro to Microeconomics course:
“I won’t name the professor, but he literally yelled that he hated Republicans in class,” Gimelstein says. Though the comment was made in jest, Gimelstein says it still hurt his feelings. “While all my classmates were laughing along, I wasn’t laughing. It was kind of insulting.”
And then there’s Kassy Dillon, a snowflake at Mount Holyoke College who was banned for Twitter last year for promoting racist hate speech. In an angry blog post, she claims she became a “target” after voicing her support of Donald Trump, and that one person went so far as to say “Fuck you, fuck Trump, I fucking hate Trump supporters” right to her face.
“These students are taught such absurd concepts from their liberal professors that they think resistance to a democratic republic’s election results means violence is justified,” she rants. “To them, the targets of this anger are the only conservatives in clear sight: my few club members, one professor, and I.”
We’re not quite sure how saying “fuck you” to someone equates to violence, but whatever.
According to Sweeney, liberal college professors outnumber conservative college professors 28 to 1 these days, compared to 5 to 1 when Ronald Reagan was in office. This imbalance, he argues, is “bad for everyone.”
“At many of New England’s most prestigious colleges, political conservatism has been reduced to stereotypes,” Sweeney writes, “conflated with the alt-right and branded as being so wrongheaded that it’s not even worth considering, let alone hiring professors who embrace right-leaning ideas.”
He continues: “To some people on the receiving end, however, progressive rhetoric can sound shrill and an awful lot like suppression of speech and intolerant political correctness. The result? Many conservatives on New England’s campuses are feeling more marginalized and alienated than ever before.”
Hmmm. Sounds a lot like the crap LGBTQ people and other minorities have had to put up with since, well, forever.