Editor's Note: This article was originally published under the name "John David," the former pseudonym of NAS Communications & Research Associate David Acevedo. To learn more about why David no longer writes under this name, click here.
CounterCurrent: Week of 12/8
According to Minding the Campus, Penn State University’s Office of Vice Provost for Educational Equity employs a whopping 66 staff members. Amherst College’s equivalent clocks in at 19, even though the school barely matriculates 1,800 students. Top diversity bureaucrats in higher education earn salaries well into six figures, in some cases approaching $500,000 per year. If we adhere to the age-old proverb and “follow the money,” college administrations’ top priorities are revealed: diversity, equality, and ultimately, social justice.
The term “social justice,” as defined by Oxford Reference, means “the objective of creating a fair and equal society in which each individual matters, their rights are recognized and protected, and decisions are made in ways that are fair and honest.” However, when used by left-leaning professors and university bureaucrats, the sensibility usually goes something like this: “American society treats people unfairly. American culture elevates the wealthy and the privileged over everybody else. It is oppressive. I’m oppressed. I want to redistribute wealth and privilege. Those things should be taken away from the people I don’t like and given to me and those people I do like.”
Unfortunately, because social justice theory is viewed as an objective moral imperative rather than what it is, namely a theory, administrators have spent countless millions of dollars to ensure that it permeates every square inch of campus. For students in the vast majority of colleges and universities, there is no escape. Social justice theory has infected virtually every academic department, even those that might be considered “safe,” such as mathematics and the hard sciences. It can also be found in core curricula, admissions requirements, student events, residence halls, study abroad programs, and accreditation policies, to name a few. In short, nearly every student will be forced to accept or reject social justice theory, with very little room for indifference.
In response to this rapidly-growing trend, the NAS is proud to announce a new research report titled Social Justice Education in America. In it, Research Director David Randall expounds the core tenets of social justice theory, the ways in which they are made manifest within higher education, their specific dangers, and our recommendations for reform. In order to effectively challenge this ideology, it is vital to understand how it infected college campuses, making this report an essential read for all who promote intellectual freedom and academic freedom and value viewpoint diversity.
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Image: Alex Radelich, Public Domain