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Columbia U: Take Our New OWS Class

Discussion in 'Political Discussion' started by Leave No Doubt, Jan 2, 2012.

  1. PatriotsReign

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    #18 Jersey

    PFiVA, I'm not trying to say any university should be restrained by any agency in any manner. But I am saying that it is wrong & unethical for any university to attempt to influence their students' political thought one way or the other (left or right) to and for their benefit.

    Do you agree or disagree?

    I don't see how anyone could believe that is acceptable. Otherwise we have universities across the nation that are training grounds for political partisanship.

    For example, the University of Massachusetts economics dept. clearly attempts to "Educate" students on socialist beliefs. They did so when I attended that university and they continue to do so. To me, that is clearly wrong...extremely wrong as a matter of fact.

    The responsibility of all universities is to educate students to make up their own minds without their "granny" influences.
     
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2012
  2. PatsFanInVa

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    Know thine enemy, know thine competitor, know thine bogeyman, PR.

    As it happens, while in college, I learned about many religions (not mine, and thank God, in an academic study of those religions,) many worldviews, many systems, from Commies to Nazis (as well as the U.S. & European spectrums.)

    Frankly, if more colleges had taught Socialism, I think more Americans would know what Socialism is, and we wouldn't have idiots running around shouting that it's "Socialism" every time we pay our national bills.

    No, PR, I don't agree with your premise that the less we know the better off we are, and it's pretty shocking that you're that afraid of thought and theory.

    Now in terms of your straw-man, that it's "wrong" if the whole point of the entire university to further an ideology, you only have a quarrel with the religious institutions.

    What a load of bullsh1t.

    PFnV
     
  3. DarrylS

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    Still amazed at the level of control and caveats that the right wants to impose on a private university, all the while assuming that students are forced to take a course.. and nothing is further from the truth.

    30 students are going to be indoctrinated by the perverse left.

    All the while Liberty University received $445 million dollars in Pell Grants and GI Bill, by far the largest recipient in the country.. one might deduce that the federal government is basically subsidizing this formerly financially challenged ultra-conservative religious private school..

    Because they receive federal funds they should offer opposing views..
     
  4. DarrylS

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    Your rant is about public education and anecdotal at best.. relying on agenda driven blogs..

    This thread is about a private university offering an elective..
     
  5. PatriotsReign

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    #18 Jersey

    As long as every university offers balanced choices of perspectives, you're right. However, if they have an agenda, you're wrong...plain & simple.
     
  6. Harry Boy

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    Columbia should also have courses on The KKK, The Tea Party, The American Gang Banger and the strange reason that we don't see more American Indians in TV Commercials and participating in American Politics, what a wonderful gratifying feeling it would be to someday see "America's First Navajo President" god it's enough to make a true liberal become sexually aroused.

    HEADLINE:
    PRESIDENT RUNNING RABBIT DECLARES CUSTERS LAST STAND A NATIONAL HOLIDAY.

    GOD WILLING
     
  7. PatsFanInVa

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    Should every university be required to teach Hinduism, Buddhism, Islam, etc., if they teach Christianity?

    If they teach "Christian family" or "How to be a Christian man" or whatever, should they be required to teach "Muslim family" or "How to be a Muslim man?" Buddhist? Hindu? Jewish? Atheist?

    Or should one student be able to choose Bob Jones University, and another Yeshiva University, etc?

    PFnV
     
  8. wistahpatsfan

    wistahpatsfan Pro Bowl Player

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    #75 Jersey

    I'm a graduate, Class of '88. GoooooooOOO REINDEER!

    Christmas University
     
  9. PatsFanInVa

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    But if we have a Christmas University, don't we have to have a War on Christmas University?

    [​IMG]
     
  10. PatriotsReign

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    #18 Jersey

    But we already have Jewish, catholic and protestant universities...prolly have some atheist ones too.

    Religion is not politics PFiVA, so let's not equate the 2.

    Do you believe it's ok for pubic (as in state) universities to have a political agenda with their students?

    I believe this issue is very similar to why public sector workers should not be able to unionize.
     
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2012
  11. DarrylS

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    Your points are not germane to this conversation, as it is about a private university..

    If you are so concerned about the "socialistic" teachings at a state funded university, why don't you file an complaint or minimally write an op ed about it.. either that or just complain about it on anonymous internet message boards.
     
  12. PatsFanInVa

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    We also already have universities that politically lean right, in aggregate, and that lean left. It just so happens that many that lean right are already religious in their foundation, and also are supported by taxpayer dollars (see Bob Jones University's Federal Financial Aid page.)

    Okay. THen let's only talk about religion. We'll worry about your misguided concerns later. Tongue in cheek there, PR. Walk and chew gum at the same time. The issues are intimately intertwined in this context, and are eminently comparable.

    The Constitution forbids us from establishing a religion.

    The Constitution does not forbid us from establishing an ideology that can be called "political." In fact it demands we do so, broadly speaking -- and we do. In every class in every university we frame our conversations in terms of rights of the individual, and only at the very margins question that frame.

    I don't know of any that do. Certainly they're in the minority. Columbia doesn't advertise itself as producing young Democrats, young Socialists, or what have you. You can take classes taught by OWS "veterans" there, and I'm sure you can also take classes taught by U.S. military veterans and former Republican administration apperatchiks. Kissinger teaches at Harvard, isn't it? Is Harvard therefore seeking to turn out only young "geo-cons"?

    I do know of many universities that have religious agendas regarding their students -- they state in their basic documents that their goal is to produce people who are exemplars of one religion or another, and that is what that school is for.

    Yet my tax dollars go to a student choosing to attend such universities.

    You can believe what you want -- and by the way, you're wrong there too.

    The question is what you think. Do some thinking and get back to me...

    Snarkiness aside what you have here is a position you dearly want to start by posing a question that does not pertain:

    "I don't think that a public university should be able to bend the entirety of its resources to achieve a political result."

    You also state or imply the following:

    -- you can't consider the religious result to be a political result, so no fair explaining how we already have a ton of universities already teaching conservative ideology alongside religious agendas.

    -- you have to focus on the possibility of political indoctrination

    -- you have to ignore the fact that it's unconstitutional to establish a religion with state funds, but we're only talking about whether it's vaguely "wrong" to do so with a political ideology

    -- you have to address a hypothetical case, an entire university existing only to turn out an ideological product

    -- you have to jump to that outcome from the existence of some professors and some classes teaching various political viewpoints.

    We're talking about one class on OWS, and if there weren't one, Columbia would have a less rich educational smorgasbord from which to choose.

    Your attempt to paint whole universities by the existence of classes you "don't like" is a classic purge tactic. Whether you're pursuing it "on your own" (or more accurately, whether you believe you are,) this has been a rightie tactic for a long time.

    One claims that any class that can lead to learning from a perspective other than the conservative perspective is "indoctrination." One claims that a class that accepts the status quo (or urges that it moves ever further toward conservative values) is just teaching the facts.

    For example: An econ class teaching trickle-down economics in one guise or another is teaching "economics" that no economist takes seriously, and has only political value. Despite the fact that the theory has no adherents, it is almost gospel among the rightie commentariat (see the "tax cuts for job creators" argument during an era of low demand.)

    But if I'm a rightie and I find Ricardo, Keynes, Marx, even Adam Smith being taught in schools, unless they're sanitized (and Marx thrown completely out,) I claim that the school is doing "liberal indoctrination."

    It's just a matter of time until the principle of natural selection must be purged from our higher eduction system, just as rightists are trying to "object" to the "indoctrination" of their children in grade school (see the recent New Hampshire law -- any parent whiny enough can now demand an "alternative" set of facts.)

    That's a very very slippery slope indeed. Unfortunately for the American right, by their lights, reality has a left-wing bias. Reporting reality, teaching the facts, etc., are all inimical to the con men who'd have us purge all academic thinking, all searches for knowledge, that don't by dint of assumptions result in their preferred outcomes.

    Hence my feeling that you're a mix of naive and manipulative on this point -- you want to confine the conversation to premises that yield illogical outcomes, but I don't think you're even aware that you're part of a long line who've argued likewise, or what their perfect "end-state" actually is.

    PFnV
     
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2012
  13. PatsFanInVa

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    And oh by the way...

    Where I went to school, on the Righty side, we had an ex-CIA guy who once came out with this sardonic description (which I felt fine with plagiarizing for a while, when it was understood the slur part was a persona of sorts...)

    "...The English could develop differently, because they had the English Channel to keep the [slur for Frenchmen], [Slur for Itallians,] and the [slur for Spaniards] on the other side, where they belonged."

    The funniest part was that he was simultaneously embracing exactly the same viewpoint as the one he was "Ironically" making fun of.

    And, we had some ex-hippie burnout Berkeley guy, very smart, long hair and all that, who was convinced that we had to turn out clean-cut centrists. Didn't think too highly of the kids that were basically like what he'd been like. But then, who does, right?

    Look at their resumes or the books they'd written and you'd get very different ideas of the "indoctrination" value of their courses.

    The project of liberal arts colleges and universities -- which is really what you're describing -- is to teach kids to think. Not to give them the answers, but to open them to asking the questions.

    Questioning God -- does that sound too liberal?
    Questioning American values -- does that sound too liberal?
    Questioning Capitalism -- does that sound too liberal?

    If you get through your college career in a liberal arts institution and don't do these things, how the hell can you claim to have asked big questions? Doesn't mean that the answers are "God doesn't exist/American Values Suck/Down with Capitalism." It means you're mentally strong enough to ask the questions.

    Me, I ask those questions and a bunch of others that bother some people. I end up being a "believer" by and large, but feel I'm a bit more equipped to deal with the legit points of the "unbelievers."

    PFnV
     
  14. PatriotsReign

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    #18 Jersey

    No offense taken...didnt' even see anything "snarky"

    I believe it is (or would be) morally wrong for universities to try to influence their students politically to the right or left.

    At least by choosing a religious university, the student knows what they're going into.

    I don't even know if or how many universities attempt to sway students left or right, but if they do, they should publically state what their position is.

    When I chose my economics classes, I had no idea that the staff of UMass, Amhersts Econ Dept was Marxists. I went there initially as an art major. Honestly, I did not enjoy listening to their slanted views on economics and life.

    I recall one professor talking about racism. He posed the question, "Do you think "X" race is by and large, lazy?" Then he asked us if we thought being lazy was okay. Said some cultures value easy-going lifestyles...blah, blah, blah.

    Hello! Professor? We live in America, not "some cultures"! :rolleyes:

    To this day, I believe it was (and still is) wrong for UMass' Econ Dept to be Marxists. I imagine the few professors we had that weren't Marxists felt a tad left out.

    So if I said universities should not be allowed to purposefully influence political views of their students...I'll temper that with "it's morally wrong". And it's worse if they have an agenda but don't state publically what that agenda is.

    Wouldn't you agree with the last part?
     
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2012
  15. The Brandon Five

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    #75 Jersey

    Do we question Socialism, Chinese values and secular humanism as well? In other words, most are not good at questioning their own assumptions so it is probably important to have a diversity of viewpoints on the faculty.
     
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2012

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