College diversity programs 'a dangerous precedent'
There was a time when American colleges and universities sought to admit the best and brightest young minds into their ranks. However, at many institutions of higher learning, that old pursuit has been replaced by a new objective – diversity.
And it’s one specific type of diversity that schools want, according to Daily Caller editor and columnist Scott Greer.
“The type of diversity wanted is not a diversity of viewpoints or even really a diversity of backgrounds,” Greer said recently in an interview with Stefan Molyneux. “It’s just about having kind of almost racial quotas, even though the Supreme Court has ruled that when it comes to affirmative action, schools cannot base admissions policies on racial quotas, but they still in some ways end up [doing that] because they just favor students based on their skin color or some other type of ethnic background that they have.”
Greer, author of the brand new book “No Campus For White Men: The Transformation of Higher Education Into Hateful Indoctrination,” said college administrators pursue racial and ethnic diversity because they believe it will make everyone on campus smarter and better overall.
But available research paints a far less rosy picture of diversity’s effects. Harvard political scientist Robert Putnam reported in his book “Bowling Alone” that communities with high levels of diversity tended to have lower social capital: People were less likely to be civically engaged or to trust one another.
Greer warned the idolization of diversity could set society back many years.
“The fact that students are getting in not on the basis of their merit or hard work or their achievements but based solely on their skin color creates a dangerous precedent for the rest of society,” he cautioned.
“Basically we’re kind of inverting what the civil rights movement of the 1960s said: ‘We’re just going to judge you on the content of your character.’ Now we’re reverting back to, ‘No, we’re going to judge you on the color of your skin,’ because if you’re a white person on the same level as an African American, the African American is superior to you in terms of what type of student they want simply because of the color of their skin.”
In fact, the pursuit of diversity on college campuses may actually harm minority students.
Greer explained the theory of mismatch: Students who could not have gotten into a certain college on academics alone get in because they are of a certain race, and once on campus, they struggle because the school is too academically rigorous for them. In other words, the school is a mismatch for their talent level.
“Poor grades fill these students with misery and turn some of them towards campus activism, particularly if their professors or fellow students tell them “systemic racism” is to blame for their struggles. Greer said college administrators hope a good education will prepare all students to succeed in life, but that’s not how it works for mismatched students.
“They’re putting in a lot of these students who are not qualified to go to these great schools, and they’re brought in just simply for their skin color, and instead of making them more likely to succeed in society, it’s turning them into extreme racial activists who have these grievances toward the college, not because it let them in when they shouldn’t have and they could have succeeded at a different school that matched their qualities – instead they’re failing and they’re blaming the school, they’re blaming white supremacy, they’re blaming all of America for why they’re failing,” he said.
Greer pointed out many campus activists demand special counseling exclusively for minority students and insist schools should not expel minority students for poor grades.
Identity politics has come to dominate many campuses, he said.
“Identity politics, as practiced on many college campuses, essentially tells minority students that they need to identify with a certain identity that marks them from the dominant majority of North America – thus, no identity politics for white men,” Greer explained.
“It has to be based around a minority identity that’s about gaining more power, more status and more privilege on a college campus.”
Greer noted the mindset leads to balkanization, where several competing groups beg the campus administration to favor them at the expense of their enemies – in this case, any students outside their identity group. Greer fears a balkanized campus would descend into a war among tribes, or a war of all against all, because if students are taught to worry about only their own group’s interest, they won’t worry about anyone else and therefore won’t be interested in campus unity.
What’s worse, campus balkanization could easily lead to balkanization of American society at large, according to Greer, because today’s campus activists could grow up to be tomorrow’s congressmen, senators, judges, attorneys general and other leaders.
“This is not a stable social model that’s being created on college campuses, pitting tribes against tribes and basically saying, ‘We’re going to have this big old country, big old multicultural, pluralistic country that’s pitting tribe against tribe,'” Greer said. “No, that’s never worked in world history.
“You can look at Austria-Hungary, where basically the nationalities were pitted against each other and somehow the Habsburg dynasty was only allowed to stay alive by tactically pitting one nationality against the other. If we have that in the United States, we’re not going to have a real democracy, and that was not a democracy at all. You can’t have a stable democracy with this kind of tribal warfare that’s brewing on college campus.
“It’s not going to lead to any more harmony or unity. They always say, ‘Diversity is our strength. We’re just going to become a better country with diversity and we’re just going to love each other more with diversity.’ No, it leads to more hatred and animosity and distrust between people who are supposed to live in a country and get along well enough together to have a stable democracy. Instead it creates more instability, more potential for conflict, and it’s ultimately the future in the works for North America unless this campus insanity is stopped.”
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