Unpersuasive book argues that higher education should have a leftist bias

George Leef

In this week's Pope Center Clarion Call, I review a book by emeritus English professor Donald Lazere entitled Why Higher Education Should Have a Leftist Bias. The book is utterly unpersuasive and unpleasant to read for the author's hostility towards those who don't share his rosy view of big government. The book reminds me of something that sociology professor Jonathan Haidt said about himself in his earlier days, "I hated Reagan but had never actually met a conservative."

Lazere contends that if American college students were better taught, they could break free of the overwhelming "conservative/corporate" belief system most grow up with. Unfortunately, to him that means instructing them that they need to hunt for bias in writings, which will usually lead to fallacious reasoning about the merits of a piece, and suggesting that real socialism could be great. Instead, students ought to learn how to employ logic and if more did so, they'd be less apt to fall for deceptive argumentation that comes at them from all angles. If that were to happen, I think we'd see a greater decline in support for the leftist project of expanding the scope of government than for the "conservatism" that Lazere loathes (but little understands).

  • Share

Most Commented

March 16, 2022

1.

Exclusive: Association of American Medical Colleges to Propose DEI Curriculum Standards

The Association of American Medical Colleges plans to release “diversity, equity, and inclusion competencies” that will force students and faculty to embrace social justice......

May 12, 2022

2.

Mornin’ Ralph, Mornin’ Sam in Anthropology Today

Professor Lowrey recounts her latest encounter with academic cancel culture, this time with an acceptance-turned-rejection at Anthropology Today....

November 24, 2021

3.

1619 Again: Revisiting the Project's Troubled Past

New York Times editor Jake Silverstein's new essay on the 1619 Project attempts to glide past the awkwardness that accompanied the project’s early days. Let's set the reco......

Most Read

May 12, 2022

1.

Mornin’ Ralph, Mornin’ Sam in Anthropology Today

Professor Lowrey recounts her latest encounter with academic cancel culture, this time with an acceptance-turned-rejection at Anthropology Today....

April 5, 2022

2.

How Many Confucius Institutes Are in the United States?

UPDATED: We're keeping track of all Confucius Institutes in the United States, including those that remain open, those that closed, and those that have announced their closing....

May 15, 2015

3.

Where Did We Get the Idea That Only White People Can Be Racist?

A look at the double standard that has arisen regarding racism, illustrated recently by the reaction to a black professor's biased comments on Twitter....