Court Allows Indirect Control of Campus Speech

A federal appeals court ruled Monday that the University of Michigan could be dampening free speech on campus by allowing a group that helps students who have experienced potentially prejudicial acts to operate at the institution. Speech First, a Washington, D.C.-based civil liberties watchdog, sued Michigan last year, asking for an injunction to halt the activities of the university’s […]

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Should False Rape Reports Be Punished?

The Ninth Commandment urges us as follows: “Thou shall not bear false witness against thy neighbor.” The principle of false witness as an offense has been incorporated in British Common Law and American law as “perjury … defined as swearing falsely, under oath, in a judicial proceeding, about a material issue.” Perjury is a felony, a serious criminal offense. […]

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Man comforting his depressed friend

Fake Claims of Rape Due to Trauma Are Under Scrutiny

The big news in campus sexual misconduct hearings is that believers in trauma-informed adjudications are on the defensive. What that verbal mouthful means is that apparent weaknesses in a complainant’s case—inarticulateness, contradictions, lying, or being too “frozen’’ or fearful of testifying—must not be automatically taken as evidence that sexual trauma has occurred. In recent years, […]

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Bloomberg Warns Colleges on Limiting Free Speech

Former New York City Mayor, Michael Bloomberg, made headlines by arguing in a political column that political rage and increasingly polarized discourse are endangering the nation. He said Americans are too unwilling to engage with people whose ideas are different from their own. He added that Americans used to move forward productively after elections regardless […]

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Has Harvard Lost Its Taste for Western Civilization?

The official greeting of Harvard president Larry Bacow to the members of the Harvard Community — a typical welcome to new students, faculty, and parents — has touched a political nerve. Stina Chang, writing on the Asian-American news site AsAmNews picked up Bacow’s pitch to legislators to ease restrictions on international students who want to […]

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Doing Physics While Black

If “diversity” is not only good but an essential core ingredient of a quality education, as the current academic mantra insists, then physics — the least diverse of all fields (blacks earned 2% of bachelor’s degrees in 2015) — has a big problem. Now Stanford claims to have a solution. “Physics faculty and students are […]

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The Garden of College Excellence Is Growing Weeds

Anthony Kronman, my long-time Yale Law School colleague and perhaps the most eloquent individual I know personally, has written a brave, high-minded, argumentative, and largely persuasive book about the values and choices that should animate our greatest colleges and universities but no longer do. His book, The Assault on American Excellence, is also quixotic in […]

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the poison of identity politics

Columbia Adds Multiculturalism to Core Curriculum

Columbia University has decided to add a contemporary multicultural component to its famed core curriculum, Insidehighered.com reported. You knew it was coming. The Western Civilization orientation in general education coursework has been utterly routed for a long time now. The few remaining cases, such as Columbia’s, won’t endure because the academic left won’t let them. […]

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Teaching That America Is Hopelessly Racist

Many more college students have read Ta-Nehisi Coates’ anti-white screed Between the World and Me (2015) than have read, say, works by the Nobel economist Robert Fogel, Time on the Cross: The Economics of American Slavery (1974) or Without Consent or Contract: The Rise and Fall of American Slavery (1989). I can say that with […]

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Are College Costs Transforming Family Life?

The New York intellectual establishment has learned via a New York Times op-ed and a New Yorker story/book review that the high cost of college has “changed” (Times) or “transformed” (New Yorker) American family life. That is nothing particularly new or revealing, at least for millions of Americans living, as I do, in that vast […]

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Harvard Law Professors Challenge Unfairness of Title IX

A lawsuit filed by an accused professor against Baylor University is the latest in a string of litigation from professors or high-level university employees adjudicated under campus Title IX tribunals. It was all but inevitable that the unfair Title IX apparatus that has ensnared thousands of accused students would target professors as well. It might […]

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How Conservatives Can Win Without Whining

The progressivist insistence on feeling safe and included, along with accompanying acts of censorship and personnel complaint, has proven so successful in recent years that one can hardly blame conservative students for joining in. But they should hold back. When conservatives proclaim that they are offended and unsafe, though they may win a quick victory […]

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Signing-of-the-Constitution

The New York Times Rewrites American History

On August 18, the Sunday New York Times included a section, The 1619 Project. It announced a goal unusual in journalism, reframing American history, “making explicit how slavery is the foundation on which this country is built.” The Times seemed to imagine that all the protestors were far-right conservatives, but one that caught our eye […]

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Intimidation-Produced Silence at Stanford

Back in the late middle of the last century I attended Stanford for my last three years of college and my last three years of graduate school. Since then I have looked in vain for the dividend checks from that investment, but one thing I have received with some regularity is the alumni magazine. Along […]

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The Assault on Free Thought

The academic left’s efforts to suppress opposing views is fierce, agile, and determined. It can summon an angry mob at a moment’s notice, get the undivided attention of a busy college president, or turn on the tears over the anguish a student feels when oppressed. Whether the goal is to bar a speaker, deface a […]

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A Weak Attempt at Justifying Admissions Preferences

In the Summer 2019 issue of Cato Institute’s Regulation magazine, Professor Dennis Weisman of Kansas State University offers a benign view of college admissions preferences. In “What Constitutes ‘Discrimination’ in College Admissions?” Weisman argues that since colleges admit many students for reasons other than their high degree of academic ability, there’s no good reason to […]

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A Federal Court Takes on Title IX

Since the Obama-era Dear Colleague letter, there have been almost 500 lawsuits filed at the state or federal level by accused students. One of the most unfair—in the combination of procedures and outcome—occurred at Purdue University. A lawsuit filed in January 2017 was revived last month by an important opinion issued by the Seventh Circuit. […]

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Diversicrats Are All That’s Left on Campus

At this point in time, the word diversity is spoken with such pedestrian calm that people forget that it used to have an edgy import.  Not that many years ago, “diversity” meant the introduction of women and minorities into academic jobs and the academic curriculum—as it does now. But back then, that introduction was cast […]

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As Alaska Slashes Funds to Higher Education, Will Other States Follow?

The state of Alaska has unleashed a grizzly bear of a problem for the lower forty-eight. By slashing public spending on the University of Alaska by 41 percent, the governor and the legislature have defied one of the settled rules of American politics: Thou shalt not threaten public higher education. What if other states follow […]

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A Confusing Racial Decision for Harvard

Harvard’s decision last month to rescind admission to Kyle Kashuv because of nasty racial tweets he sent three years ago is a curiously unprincipled action. Kashuv is obviously contrite. He shows all the indications of a reformed sinner eager to undergo Harvard’s diversity training. One would think that an institution so solemnly dedicated to social […]

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