College today is really dumb. But according to Donna Riley, head of Purdue University’s School of Engineering Education, that’s a good thing.
“Understanding how rigor reproduces inequality, we cannot reinvent it but rather must relinquish it,” she said in an, ahem, “scholarly” journal. Rigor, Riley went on to say, “has a historical lineage of being about hardness, stiffness, and erectness.”
Um, I think she violated my safe space. What is this, the Louis CK show?
So much for reason and science, then. Seems like those things might still be important in a school of engineering, but I guess those bridges you drive over will now be prevented from crashing to the ground through the pagan power of spoiled, elitist good intentions. I’ll see you at the bottom of the river.
That’s where everyone is going to end up in this perpetual race to make academia as flaccid as possible, and my own state’s flagship university is no exception. That is where a federal lawsuit has been filed on behalf of a student group called Business Leaders in Christ after University of Iowa apparatchiks kicked the group off campus for requiring its student leaders to adhere to a statement of faith.
Yeah, screw all this rigor and rule-making, man! That’s why I was so glad to see the University of Iowa respond to this lawsuit by getting rid of all academic and extra-curricular entrance requirements to attend its august institution. Because equality and stuff. Free at last.
Well, if you think that last paragraph actually happened, you are limper in the brain than Donna Riley. For “do as I say, not as I do” is a mantra of progressivism written in blood. How else do you think a world can come into existence where I am told to respect the choices of women, however depraved they may be, yet the choices of nuns not pay for other people’s contraception are fought all the way to the Supreme Court?
Or a world where I have to respect a man’s choice to “be a woman” but not a man’s choice to not bake a cake for a ceremony that stands in direct conflict to the dictates of his conscience?
If we were actually living in a land dedicated to reason and science, the hypocrisies and corruption inherent in these examples would be evident to the point of hilarity. No serious person would entertain them for a single second.
But what happens if many of the people in power — those who have control to some degree over nearly every aspect of your life at this point — are not only entertaining them, but actually demanding lopsided fealty to such a rigged philosophical and ethical game? Look in the mirror, America. That’s where you live.
Fellow Iowan Shane Vander Hart, editor of the blog Caffeinated Thoughts, dove into the details of this lawsuit. Under its blatant double standard, the school denied this one group access to participate in on-campus recruitment fairs, use campus facilities, or receive funding and benefits provided to the over 500 student groups on campus. Business Leaders in Christ is far from the only campus group that requires agreement from its members.
The University of Iowa Feminist Union limits its membership to students who “agree with [its] purposes and principles,” including support for abortion, access to contraception for minors, and even certain positions on the environment.
The Islamic organization Imam Mahdi reserves certain membership benefits, including leadership roles, to members who are Shia Muslims. The group also requires its leaders to “refrain from major sins and endeavor to avoid minor sins.”
Fraternities and sororities, which the university encourages students to join, discriminate on the basis of gender. The university also advertises for fraternities and sororities that affiliate on the basis of race, ethnicity, and sexual orientation.
And then there’s the kicker. It’s a student group called “Love Works,” and it requires its executive officers to “sign and agree to the Mission and Statement of Core Beliefs of Love Works.”
Like Business Leaders in Christ, it is a religious organization. Unlike Business Leaders in Christ, though, it was founded by the very gay man who filed the complaint that led to the University of Iowa’s neat little version of the Salem witch trials.
That’s right. In academia, the rule seems to be you get to have all the core beliefs you want, not to mention demand that others sign on to them, in direct proportion to the degree that you believe others shouldn’t have the same rights and privileges as well.
As Wonder Woman once said, “Where I’m from, that’s called slavery.”