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Commentary: College campuses are training grounds for the 'PC police

Students take part in a protest against fees and cuts in the education system in November 2014 in London. (Carl Court/Getty Images)

College campuses have become a training ground for the vocal, politically correct shame police dedicated to making sure everyone adheres to their standards.

They alone are the keepers of the secret knowledge about what is "right" and "moral."

The latest example comes from the University of Maryland, where a coalition of 25 student groups banded together last month to present the administration a list of 64 "demands."  The demands run the gamut from "required diversity training for Greek organizations" to a shuttle service for Muslim students to a local Mosque so they can "have access to a place of worship and participate in the many activities that the center hosts."

One of the demands (a word usually reserved for hostage negotiations) involved supporting the pro-Palestinian Boycott Divest and Sanction movement on campus. The students insisted upon "the active encouragement of faculty and students to engage in discourse and learning about the Palestinians’ struggles and the Boycott Divest and Sanction movement without fear of consequences by the university administration.” As a result, Jewish student groups declined to sign onto the list; a fact that was not lost on the Washington Post:

The absence of Jewish groups from the initiative underscores continuing tensions between the Jewish and pro-Palestinian communities at the College Park campus. In April, for example, a celebration hosted by the Jewish Student Union called Israel Fest was protested by a few dozen students who carried pro-Palestinian flags, chanted and lay on the ground. The protesters left after security intervened.

So basically, concerns that might be relevant to Jewish groups on campus — like if there are other groups that might protest their religious celebrations, for example —  didn't make the cut of issues that students are supposed to be supporting today.

It would be easy to dismiss these things as simply the passion of youth and, in fact, encourage them as examples of free expression, which they are, but when kids are spoon-fed propaganda, perhaps things have gone a bit too far.

It's not that these students shouldn't have a voice. It's that so much of what they're learning on hot topics such as climate change, diversity and Middle East peace is debatable, at best. Climate change is by no means settled science. Diversity isn’t the be-all and end-all. And the Palestinian cause is by no means the only acceptable moral position in discussions of the Middle East.

It begins to look a lot like college campuses are hotbeds of disinformation — or only "certain" information — rather than good information.

Now two big-name Democrats, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders and New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, want taxpayers to foot the bill so that more students can get to campus and learn only certain things for "free."

“College is a mandatory step if you want to be a success,” Cuomo said. “And the way this society said we’re going to pay for high school because you need high school, this society should say we’re going to pay for college because you need college to be successful.”

"The rule of the game was everybody has a fair shot at success. That is America. And when you take that away you take the spirit and the values that made this country this country,” he continued.

But students will get only certain values – those that progressive college campuses and liberal politicians deem correct.

Fortunately, there's hope from across the pond, as some U.K. students have begun to fight back against the PC culture they've experienced on campus. From The Spectator:

Something dramatic is happening on campuses. Two years ago, in this magazine, I wrote about the rise of the Stepford Students. These are the student leaders who might look and sound rad — all dyed hair and blather about ‘intersectionality’ — but who are really just officious meddlers in the lives of others. Whether they’re banning sombreros because they’re offensive to Latinos or No Platforming right wingers and off message feminists, these student officials strangle debate, and have tried to turn campuses from hotbeds of social and intellectual interaction into starched ‘safe spaces’.

Now, however, a counter Stepford rebellion is stirring. Students are sick of being patronised, so they are shooting down this PC creed. They aren’t hurling Molotov cocktails or staging sit ins, as students of old did — they’re setting up free speech societies, boycotting patronising lifestyle lectures and, most strikingly, voting to get the hell out of the suffocating grip of the National Union for Students. These Students for Sanity, as I call them, are reclaiming their rights.

Hopefully students in the U.S. will also find their voices and passionately exercise their free expression to fight against being held as prisoners by the tyranny of the thought police for the rest of their lives.

One last thing…
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