danger! high voltage!
ok, i'll admit it. i've been really depressed that i didn't even merit a footnote in david horowitz's the professors: the 101 most dangerous academics in america. here's the publisher's blurb:
Bestselling author David Horowitz reveals a shocking and perverse culture of academics who are poisoning the minds of today's college students. The Professors is a wake-up call to all those who assume that a college education is sans hatred of America and the American military and support for America's terrorist enemies.
so, you can see why i'd like to get a mention. in truth, i agree with horowitz on a couple points: (1) there are few conservative voices in the academy; and, (2) professors can and do abuse their tenured positions.
that said, i've seen little evidence of a "shocking and perverse culture of academics" (but i'll keep looking). i'd also challenge the assertion that academics hate America. we're actually sort of keen on the whole free speech and civil liberties thing. finally, the culture of the academy is anti-mindpoisoning. we walk into a classroom with some modicum of professional responsibility, don't we? some of us even view the relationship between student and teacher as a sacred thang.
well, inside higher ed links to a nice fact-checking report on horowitz's book, defending the honor of those marked as dangerous. i know at least one dangerous prof who made the cut: sam richards, a political sociologist and fine drummer to boot (after playing with him on angie, i wanted to move into his basement). the rebuttal to sam's entry is telling:
Mr. Horowitz claims, Dr. Richards’ “class lessons are reinforced with ‘out-of-class’ assignments that include the viewing of left-wing propaganda films” (305-06).
As Professor Richards points out, Mr. Horowitz “disingenuously fails to note that students also receive credit for attending ‘conservative’ events—including a talk by none other than David Horowitz! In fact, when Mr. Horowitz visited Penn State, I strongly encouraged my liberal students to attend...
...Mr. Horowitz leaves out the parts of Professor Richards’ notes demonstrating that Richards’ true objective is to encourage “thinking that attempts to account for all sides of an argument and tries to go beyond simple answers to complex questions.”
sounds like professional responsibility to me.