Pushback against the assumed privileges of universities is beginning.

Robert Shibley highlights the story of Carl Neuss, whose alma mater, Cornell University, was seeking a donation in the millions from him.  He expressed concern about liberal indoctrination in the college, so the alumni relations folks found a few non-radical professors from among its 1,695 faculty members to talk with the potential donor.  This “best foot forward on free speech” (as Shibley puts it) backfired, because the moderate professors confirmed Neuss’s concerns.

Many institutions of higher education are no longer places of free inquiry and genuine tolerance.  They are, as Neuss feared, indoctrination mills, even if they’ll teach some useful skills along the way.

That is very strongly the impression I’ve been getting from my alma mater, the University of Rhode Island, over the past year, which (let’s just say) reduces my enthusiasm for the school as a graduate and as a parent.

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