Year: 2020

Biden ‘Racial Equity Plan’ Would Enrich Wealthy Lawyers at Employers’ Expense

Joe Biden released his “racial equity plan” on Tuesday. Some of it deals with racial issues, like a major expansion of affirmative action and lots of race-related government spending. But it also contains radical changes to America’s employment laws that have little to do with race. Under his plan, even the tiniest employers with only […]

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Minute 14 for Robin DiAngelo

What happens when a non-psychologist sets up a small and shoddy human psychological experiment in a university almost two decades ago—an experiment in which the eight subjects are repeatedly lied to, in which she brings in hand-picked collaborators to commit a deception scripted by critical racialist ideology, and all while she sits and watches the […]

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George Mason University May Discriminate Based on Race in Unconstitutional Ways

As part of a new “anti-racism” push, George Mason University plans to discriminate based on race in favor of faculty of color. On July 23, Dr. Gregory Washington, the president of GMU, announced that “We will develop specific mechanisms in the promotion and tenure process that recognize the invisible and uncredited emotional labor that people of color […]

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The Soft Bigotry of Low Expectations at Rutgers

A stunning letter titled, “Department actions in solidarity with Black Lives Matter,” written by Rebecca L. Walkowitz, chair of Rutgers’ English Department, affirms how deeply academia is now in the thrall of racism hysteria, particularly after the death of George Floyd under the knee of a brutal police officer in Minneapolis. The letter is steeped […]

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Reality-Based Research on Racism Now Under Assault in Academia

Academic freedom is under assault. Faculty are being told that their research and courses must promote a particular ideology: that racial disparities are due to racism, rather than other causes, such as the voluntary choices made by individuals. The Supreme Court has said that racial disparities are not presumptively due to racism, because reality shows […]

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Misreading Polling Data on Race

Caught up as we still are in the post-Floyd hysteria, the nation is seemingly transfixed on rooting out “systemic racism,” whatever and wherever that is. And with both the upcoming presidential election and a Black Lives Matter-like Proposition 16 to revive racial preferences on the November California ballot, accurate polling and survey data on racial […]

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Why President Trump’s New Executive Order Will Help Students and Workers

Many of today’s young people believe that a bachelor’s degree is the absolute minimum requirement necessary to land a well-paying job. In some industries, where college degrees are common, the master’s degree is becoming the new bachelor’s. President Trump wants to change that, at least as far as the federal government is concerned. In June, […]

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An Unlikely Higher Education Watchdog Draws Flak

As a lawyer by training, I did not set out to become a higher education watchdog. It just happened. Like many devoted alumni, I assumed that my alma mater—the University of Texas—remained more or less the same after I walked across the stage to receive my diploma decades ago. In my mind’s eye, UT was […]

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The Long March to Educational Reform

Today’s Marxist Left has captured America’s K-12 schools hire by hire, curriculum tweak by curriculum tweak, and nefarious reform by nefarious reform. Good luck enrolling Junior in a school where he is not conscripted to be an assistant commander in the war on hate, racism, and colonial oppression. The American Association of School Administrations recently […]

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Black Lives Matter on the Ballot

Democrats in the California legislature, with the encouragement and support of elected Democrats everywhere, have just given the citizens of the Golden State the opportunity to vote on what is one of the central demands of Black Lives Matter — converting civil rights into a naked racial spoils system. Proposition 16, which will be on […]

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If You Love Anti-American Riots, Thank Our Universities

Rioters who hate America are not an accident; they are the fruition of decades of ideological indoctrination at our universities. While Marxism was increasingly repudiated around the world by countries that had suffered and failed under communist rule, professors in Western universities enthusiastically took up the destructive system, breathing life into its rotting corpse. Many […]

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Open Access and Intellectual Freedom: Linked Meditations

Open Access The University of California signed an open-access agreement with the publisher Springer Nature this past week. That’s an improvement on the status quo—although it’s not yet clear how much of an upgrade it will prove to be. The new agreement responds to a dysfunctional status quo in the world of academic publishing. Academic […]

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On Gene Editing and the Free Market

In December, Dr. He Jiankui was sentenced to a three-year prison term, fined $430,000, and fired from his position as Associate Professor of Biology at the Southern University of Science and Technology in Shenzhen, China. Did he grope a patient? No. Poison a client? Again, no. According to the official Chinese Xinhua News Agency, Dr. […]

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Don’t Bail Out Colleges. Help Students Instead.

The COVID-19 pandemic is causing devastating financial damage throughout the economy, and higher education is no exception. Colleges worry about a decline in enrollments from students newly wary of gathering in close quarters, cuts in state funding that historically accompany recessions, and declines in the value of endowments. These dangers are real, but they don’t […]

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The New Title IX and its Challengers

The last four years have witnessed a series of desperate attempts to frustrate Education Secretary Betsy DeVos’ goal of creating a fair Title IX adjudication framework to replace the one-sided guidance she inherited from the Obama administration. In 2017, when DeVos rescinded what one federal judge deemed the “infamous Dear Colleague letter,” accusers’ rights organizations […]

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Scheming to Revive Racial Preferences in California

California’s deep-blue legislature has been itching to repeal Proposition 209 for years. Now, in the midst of a global pandemic, legislators are giving that effort priority over the state’s plainly more urgent concerns. Shame on them. Adopted by voters in 1996, Proposition 209 amended California’s constitution to prohibit the state from engaging in preferential treatment […]

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The American University and the End of the Enlightenment

America is arguably the most magnificent manifestation of the Enlightenment that transformed the world after 1500. Our nation was discovered and settled by adventurers and risk-takers embracing change and discovery. Founding Fathers such as Thomas Jefferson and Benjamin Franklin were curious about the world, innovative and creative, and believers in the emerging democratic ideal who […]

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Murders, Riots, and Liberal Education

St. John’s College, the so-called Great Books school, has provided a sanctuary for liberal education since 1937. All students study the same prescribed assignments at the same time as their classmates. Except for a few classes in the final two years, there are no electives. The readings comprise many of the world’s most intellectually challenging […]

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NAS Critiques AAUP Response to New Title IX Regulations

On May 6, the Department of Education (ED), under Secretary of Education Betsy Devos, released new Title IX regulations. Title IX was first written into law as part of the Higher Education Act of 1965 with the purpose of banning sex discrimination at colleges and universities receiving federal funding. It was last amended by ED […]

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An Announcement for Our Readers

Dear Reader, Thirteen years ago, I founded Minding the Campus under the auspices of The Manhattan Institute. Eight years later, MI gave me start-up capital to continue the site on my own, and I’ve had the privilege of writing, editing and working with outstanding MTC contributors ever since. Today, as I near my 85th birthday, […]

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The Mandatory Banality of University Presidents

The president of Harvard University, Larry Bacow, has joined numerous other college presidents in a rush to declare how upset he is over the killing of George Floyd and lamenting how divided the country has become. Brian W. Casey, president of Colgate University, wrote to alumni to express his “horror of watching the killing of […]

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Who Succeeds, and Why?

This is the third of a three-part review of Charles Murray’s latest book, Human Diversity: The Biology of Gender, Race and Class. Self-identified progressives–who make up the great bulk of North America’s coastal and urban government, business, media, and academic elites–are great champions of equality, even at the expense of freedom, justice, and prosperity. But […]

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University of California Dumps SAT for Diversity

On the same day that my recent article discussing the new attempt to repeal California’s prohibition of racial preference was posted here, William McGurn had a terrific article in the Wall Street Journal criticizing the University of California’s decision last week to drop the SAT and ACT admissions tests. “During the debate among the California […]

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Another Scheme to Justify Racial Preferences

In 1996 55% of California voters shocked Democrats by approving Proposition 209, which added a provision to the state constitution prohibiting state agencies from “discriminating against, or granting preferential treatment to, any individual or group on the basis of race, sex, color, ethnicity, or national origin in the operation of public employment, public education, or […]

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Culture, Not Biology, Tears Us Apart on Race

In his new book, Human Diversity: The Biology of Gender, Race, and Class, Charles Murray’s view is not that the 21st century orthodox rejection of the 19th century European concept of race is wrong, but that it goes too far in rejecting the biological basis of human variation. He thinks, however, that the term “race” […]

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The Real Differences Between Men and Women

For half a century, the push for gender equality has driven America’s social and political agenda and cast women as victims of male bias and repression. Make no mistake—business, entertainment, science, and academia needed reform, and eventually, the hammer that could break the glass ceiling was handed to qualified women who sought the top job […]

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The Collapse of the Fourth Estate

  The Pulitzer Committee has awarded Nikole Hannah-Jones a prize for her lead essay in The New York Times’ “The 1619 Project.” The news doesn’t exactly come as a surprise. It was widely rumored that Hannah-Jones was under consideration, which raised the tantalizing question of how the Pulitzer Committee might find its way the past […]

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COVID-19 Bites Identity Politics

As I write this, I am surrounded by silence: not only the silence of a small university town on lockdown but, also, the silence of the feminists and postmodernists as the COVID-19 pandemic has taken over. Where are the usual attacks on white male-dominated science? Where’s the “standpoint epistemology” to tell us how different is […]

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Can the Integrity of Our Colleges Be Restored?

Half a century ago, our colleges and universities were liberal in their orientations and policies. Generally, they treated students and staff as individuals who were judged by their academic achievements and potentials. (Where they existed, the exceptions were numerically minor: children of alumni and athletes.) Students and staff were free to associate with one another […]

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The Language Arts Are in Steep Decline

When I entered graduate school in English in the mid-1980s, I didn’t understand the importance of undergraduate enrollments in the field. I was so caught up in scholarship and research and theory that the junior and senior classrooms didn’t much count. The freshman and sophomore classes were even more remote. They registered to me only […]

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