Thursday, July 13, 2017

The Next Target

Writing at National Review, Elliot Kaufman makes an interesting prediction.
The next successful Republican politician will rally the Right by making America’s universities his punching bag — and the universities will prove even more vulnerable to that politician’s attacks than the media were to Donald Trump’s.
Why will this work? What will be the specific targets?
Republican voters may disagree on policy and principle, but they can agree on whom they don’t like: Radical professors, race-obsessed provocateurs, gender-studies grifters, anti-Israel fanatics, weak-kneed administrators, disgusting libertines, angry feminists, and illiberal student protesters.
Kaufman draws a not-surprising parallel.
By refusing to own up to their own bias and weaknesses, the media didn’t make their critics disappear; they only angered and empowered them, making themselves more vulnerable to attack.

The educational establishment makes the same mistake but expects a different result, while its left-wing allies cheer it on. 
Thus, Kaufman's conclusion:
The next Trump, then, will play to the worst fears of parents by going after colleges and universities. In doing so, he will unite the best, the worst, and all the other elements of the Right. They will be primed to hear the critique, which will be partially or even largely correct. The next Steve Bannon will seek to “overthrow” the university system from behind the scenes. And the universities, like the media before them, will walk right into the trap, while the Left rejects potential voters as deplorable ignoramuses.
Unsurprisingly, most voters reject being characterized as "deplorable." Meanwhile, the university I retired from now tells professors they should not fail minority students. For untentured faculty, including the many adjunct faculty, "should not" is understood to mean "must not."