If you haven't already done so, check out this piece by Ross Douthat in the New York Times. Following up on Russell Nieli's compelling reasearch, which we referenced here last week, Douthat - himself a Harvard graduate - takes note of the deep and ever widening cultural divide between elite academic institutions and the values of rural, religiously observant working-class whites, who are notably absent from Ivy League campuses. Don't think though, that this means anyone sees a need to seek them out for the sake of increasing "diversity" at Yale or Princeton. No, the academics at these cloistered, self-referencing institutions are likely to see only "crypto-klansmen and budding Timothy McVeighs" among the farmers, Eagle Scouts or aspiring R.O.T.C. candidates who currently have the toughest row to hoe if they apply to most top schools. If these applicants think that the deck is stacked against them, that's because it is: the "perfessers" really don't like folks like them.
- July 19, 2010