Liberal Colleges & Right Wing Talk Shows  

nm_bob 57M
218 posts
9/9/2006 12:41 pm
Liberal Colleges & Right Wing Talk Shows

I sometimes listen to some of the conservative radio talk shows, "know your enemy" and all that. Find out what the other side is talking about. I have often heard them wailing about the liberal bent in colleges. Recently heard a talk show host commiserating with a veteran who, of all things, had to take a political science course. Seems the veteran and the talk show host seemed to think that a few years of military service should be sufficient to waive a political science course. Seems to me this should provide him with a much better perspective to take the course and contribute, but they seemed sure that the course would be liberal with no room for dissent.
Now I recall my college days. I disagreed with many teachers. I would often answer essay questions with something like, "This is what you (or the author we were supposed to read) said, ..., but that is all hooey. Here is the way it really is and why your position is nonsense." Teacher had to give me credit - I showed I knew the material, but I also made it clear that I wasn't buying what they were selling.
More importantly, I had to take two religion courses. One, "Moral Decision Making" was taught by an ex-priest who still bought all the basic Catholic Church values: marriage is for pro-creation, no birth control, no sex outside of marriage, life is sacred, no abortions, etc. But he wanted people to think for themselves, not just repeat values they had been taught. Most of the kids in the class agreed with his values, but their reason for believing them was, "that is what my parents taught me." They could not think for themselves. On the other hand, I disagreed with the professor on almost every single item. But I got the only A he gave in two years, I thoroughly enjoyed the class, and we remained friends for many years thereafter. We disagreed, but we enjoyed exploring our values, finding the fundamental points of disagreement, and seeing how we build our different value systems. We disagreed, but we respected each other as having well thought, serious positions.
On the other hand, I took a Philosophy of Religion course from a prof who thought most religions had defined God out of existence. The professor was basically an atheist. I agreed with his positions, but he basically said everything he had to say in the first one hour class and repeated himself for the rest of the semester. He had nothing more to say and I thought he was a fool and made my opinion clear. I got a C in his class.
Complaining that colleges have a liberal bias is, in my opinion, a false argument. Can you learn from someone with a different perspective? If you have been brought up in a conservative background, all the more reason to be exposed to a liberal education. By all means, disagree where appropriate, but savor the opportunity as a learning experience. I certainly learned a lot more from the professor I disagreed with than the fool I agreed with.

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