Jewish World Review May 22, 2012/ 1 Sivan, 5772
She can't say that!
By Paul Greenberg
Lord knows our legislators have their share of faults (who doesn't?) but compared to Vote Smart's alleged researchers, they're the soul of competence.
Vote Smart concluded that fully a quarter of
As for the source of this generously dispersed misinformation, Project Vote Smart never apologized, not to my knowledge. It preferred to blame the legislators themselves. Since many of them hadn't bothered to respond to its survey, it concluded they had no college experience to report.
It was an assumption not even a rookie reporter would make, certainly not if he had a halfway decent editor looking over his shoulder. But nobody at either Project Vote Dumb or the
Yes, I know the
Now this: When one of the Chronicle's bloggers criticized the current state of Black Studies on campus, she set off a mass protest. At last count, some 6,500 academics had signed a solemn petition demanding that
And fired she was. When pressed, the Chronicle turned out to have a backbone of spaghetti.
The lady's crime? She'd pointed out, as others have, that many of the courses dubbed Black Studies "appear to be a series of axes that faculty members would like to grind." And grind away they do.
Critics of academe who note this kind of ideology masquerading as scholarship are bound to be called racists, to cite one of the more polite names hurled at Naomi Riley. A long-time observer of the lower trends in higher education, Ms. Riley was subjected to a flood of taunts that, in her words, ranged from "puerile to vitriolic." Nobody can say her work had gone unnoticed.
The Chronicle's editor-in-chief -- yes, it actually has an editor, or at least someone styled as such -- claimed the blogger was fired not because her opinions were unacceptable but because, in the course of presenting them, she'd cited some of the sillier dissertation titles in the field she was criticizing.
Said editor-in-chief didn't claim the thesis titles were inaccurate. Her sin seems to have been that she'd mentioned them. And when she did, the response from those running the Chronicle was simple. Shut up, they explained.
Strangely enough, the Chronicle had hired Ms. Riley to present the conservative point of view in order to balance its usual educanto. But when she did, she had to go.
Well, sure. Hers is not an unusual experience for anyone who dares criticize the banalities of academe. Indeed, it's almost a tradition. It goes back at least to the last century, when
For that matter, the original Uncle Tom of
But the grievance collectors of the world may be less interested in eliminating the grievances than in exploiting them.
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