Any time the opposition is silent when the Right proposes something, beware: you are doing their work for them.
Recently it has been trendy to argue that the Humanities and Liberal Arts programs in our universities are infested with Leftist groupthink, so it is time to remove them and focus on STEM.
This is a terrible idea for two significant reasons: we need the Humanities, and the STEM boom is ending.
These are hard times. Students need jobs when they graduate. But a singular opportunity has been lost if they are denied the opportunity to study foreign languages, the classics, literature, philosophy, music, theater and art. When else in their busy lives will they get that chance?
Eloquent defenses of the humanities have appeared â€“ essays explaining why we need these subjects, what their loss would mean. Those of us who teach and study are aware of what these areas of learning provide: the ability to think critically and independently; to tolerate ambiguity; to see both sides of an issue; to look beneath the surface of what we are being told; to appreciate the ways in which language can help us understand one another more clearly and profoundly â€“ or, alternately, how language can conceal and misrepresent. They help us learn how to think, and they equip us to live in â€“ to sustain â€“ a democracy.
Studying the classics and philosophy teaches students where we come from, and how our modes of reasoning have evolved over time.
We want students reading Plato and Jane Austen; we want students who are aware of history, and who are competent with language. The Left infests things and then we destroy them, and so the Left wins because another vital institution that supports clear thinking is gone. The solution is far simpler: remove Leftists from the universities.
That can be done more easily than people think. Leftists gained control by positioning themselves in roles where they had the power to determine who was hired or fired, and they busily stacked the rolls with Leftists. To end that, make college more competitive. If we remove government loans and grants, and by doing so end the artificial inflation of college degrees, the Left will lose ground.