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Misadventures in Multicultural Studies Indoctrination

Jeff’s post the other day about the questionable workshop at Brown University came to mind recently when I saw a very far-left Facebook friend link to this article by a professor named Warren Blumenfeld who had just retired from a position as a professor of education at Iowa State University.  The article contains the professor’s reflections and gives voice to both his lamentations and his indignity about those students who took his class who were not won over to his worldview and who had the temerity to announce that fact in their final papers.

The course was entitled “Multicultural Foundations in Schools and Society,” and Blumenfeld describes it in the following terms:

I base the course on a number of key concepts and assumptions, including how issues of power, privilege, and domination within the United States center on inequitable social divisions regarding race, ethnicity, socioeconomic class, sex, gender identity, sexual identity, religion, nationality, linguistic background, physical and mental ability/disability, and age. I address how issues around social identities impact generally on life outcomes, and specifically on educational outcomes. Virtually all students registered for this course, which is mandatory for students registered in the Teacher Education program, are pre-service teachers.

In other words, this is a required course in “multicultural studies” indoctrination.  If the course were voluntary, it would be a slightly different situation, but as a required course, it amounts to an example of the sort of thing that conservatives can easily point to as illustrating the left-wing biases of academia.

Professor Blumenfeld is particularly alarmed by the case of two female students who tell him quite boldly that the course has not changed their socially conservative Christian worldview:

On a final course paper, one student wrote that, while she enjoyed the course, and she felt that both myself and my graduate assistant — who had come out to the class earlier as lesbian — were very knowledgeable and good professors with great senses of humor, nonetheless, she felt obliged to inform us that we are still going to Hell for being so-called “practicing homosexuals.” Another student two years later wrote on her course paper that homosexuality and transgenderism are sins in the same category as stealing and murder. This student not only reiterated that I will travel to Hell if I continued to act on my same-sex desires, but she went further in amplifying the first student’s proclamations by self-righteously insisting that I will not receive an invitation to enter Heaven if I do not accept Jesus as my personal savior since I am a Jew, regardless of my sexual behavior. Anyone who doubts this, she concluded, “Only death will tell!”

Now while we might question the wisdom of both students in advertising the heresy represented by their beliefs so boldly in a graded assignment,  I think we might also be heartened by their courage in being true to their faith, even if we do not agree with all of the particulars of their worldview.

The professor, however, is shocked and appalled, and the rest of the essay is his attempt to reconcile–through reference to one leftist theory and tract after another–what he calls “our campus environment, one that emboldens some students to notify their professor and graduate assistant that their final destination will be the depths of Hell.”  Notice his word choice, there.  The problem is with the “campus environment” which “emboldens some students.”  It seems like a foreign idea to this professor to think that a university could be a place for the free and open exchange of ideas, especially those ideas that are unpopular.  I trust we will not find him quoting Voltaire or Jefferson anytime soon.

No, instead what we get is a description of and a reflection on a course that sounds like it could have been lifted straight from  the pages of Paolo Freire’s Pedagogy of the Oppressed, albeit with a more contemporary reading list.  While the professor uses the language of “reason,” “analysis,” and “evidence” to find fault with what the students wrote (and while I’m sure there is much to find fault with in their writings), it also seems evident from the way the course is described that the only type of analysis or reasoning that will be deemed acceptable is the sort that derives from leftist premises.  The idea of faith is an affront largely because, by its very nature, faith calls for accepting the irrational.

What’s even  more interesting to me–and alarming to Blumenfeld–is that he describes the way in which alternative groups have arisen “to promote their version of their faith and to help insulate students from the so-called ‘secular humanist indoctrination’ of public secular universities.”  To him this is the worst sort of apostasy which is wreaking the worst sort of havoc on our campuses, but to some of us, it is an encouraging sign that more people are starting to resist the left’s hegemony in academia.

Near the end of the essay, Blumenfeld returns to the stated aims of the course within the college of education:

While I genuinely respect individuals’ religious understandings, during my service at Iowa State University I have been saddened and deeply concerned that some of my students have used their religious teachings as defensive shields against inquiry, creating an aura of anti-intellectualism “protecting” them from information that may contradict or challenge their beliefs. While I find this particularly troubling when I perceive it in any person, in a pre-service and then in-service teacher whose job it is to impart a life-long love of learning, the consequences can be disastrous.

This is a complaint that anyone who has been a teacher can identify with, but it seems more than a little disingenuous after the course that has been described in the essay.

Unfortunately, courses such as the one described are hardly out of the ordinary. Consider the example of this story that has been circulating among various conservative websites and radio shows in the past two days:

Ryan Rotela, a junior at Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton, claims he was suspended over a class incident in which he refused to stomp on the word ‘Jesus.’

According to Rotela, Dr. Deandre Poole, professor of the Intercultural Communications course, asked students to write ‘Jesus’ in bold letters on a sheet of paper, place it on the floor, stand up, and stomp on it.

Rotela, a deeply religious Mormon who attends church weekly, was offended and refused to participate.

Once again we have a course with “multicultural” premises which specifically takes aim at student beliefs.

The campus left can almost always be counted on to overplay its hand, and multicultural indoctrination is alive and well on American campuses.  And yet, despite the left’s best efforts to control the conversation, dissent seems to be finding a way to survive.  Even when I do not agree with the dissenters, I am encouraged to see that they still feel free enough to express their views on campus.

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67 Comments

  1. What kind of person calls accomplished women the C-word in public discussion….

    [sf] Someone being honest

    Nope. Wrong… again!

    Comment by ILoveCapitalism — March 25, 2013 @ 1:57 am - March 25, 2013

  2. spare me the false indignation

    “Indignation” is defined as anger/annoyance. No indignation here, false or otherwise. Just a simple NOTICING of what kind of person you are, sf.

    Of which you have just provided more evidence, by trying to bring up:

    “slut”

    First, once more it’s just you hand-waving. As I’ve already pointed out, “tu quoque (or ‘You guys are bad, too! Two wrongs make a right!’) is a distractionary tool of the troll, not a real point.”

    But let’s allow it, because you also happen to be wrong on the matter (the false equivalence between the words). “Slut” is a term referring to a person’s (in SLANG usage, it does not even always have to be a woman’s) character or behavior. As such, it might even be accurate sometimes. Whereas “c*nt” is a term whose meaning (when applying it to a person, especially a woman) is to strip her of all humanity, by reducing her to nothing but a body part, thus denying that she is even capable of having character or meaningful behavior.

    To illustrate: Some people talk about “slut pride”, or write books with titles like “The Ethical Slut”. But nobody one talks about “c*nt pride” or writes books like “The Ethical C*nt”. Again, the word “c*nt” (as applied to a person) denies the very possibility of ethics, as it denies all of that person’s humanity beyond the indicated body part.

    Unbelievable, that you would need to have it explained what’s bad about calling a woman “c*nt”… but there it is.

    Comment by ILoveCapitalism — March 25, 2013 @ 2:30 am - March 25, 2013

  3. And it’s going to come back and bite him in a big way.

    No, sf. Because Bruce didn’t do anything here. You did. Bruce probably doesn’t even know what you’ve done. It’s going to come back and bite YOU, if YOU ever (say) run for office. And I have no intention of covering it up for you (by deleting your comment). But you might spare us your fake concern for Bruce.

    Comment by ILoveCapitalism — March 25, 2013 @ 2:58 am - March 25, 2013

  4. Man, I was sure Levi’d be on this thread like stink on a monkey.

    Comment by My Sharia Moor — March 25, 2013 @ 6:49 am - March 25, 2013

  5. “Slut” is a great example. The same feminists who complained about Rush Limbaugh are the ones who support “Slut Walks” as being empowering.

    The left are masters at faux outrage. Not to mention, what do you call a woman who spends $1,000 a year on birth control that normally costs $9 a month?

    Comment by V the K — March 25, 2013 @ 7:27 am - March 25, 2013

  6. MSM,

    Apparently Levi’s lies, cowardice, and bile finally got him banned.

    As to my college expereince *sigh* 20 years ago…

    I stayed at the branch as long as possible because the main campus was so infected with left wing hysteria. the three Main Campus teachers who came to teach at the branch gave me this experience…

    a) A Plant Biology teacher who went into a rant about how great India was because they used less power than the US, despite having a bigger population. He got mad when I pointed out that by his numbers, if you looked at the power consumed vs polution ratio, the US was more environmentally friendly than India.

    b) A Chinese history teacher, from China, who kept telling us how Communism was the best thing that happened to China, and side stepping the millions of deaths when brought up.

    c) A sociology professor teaching about ‘family structures’ who regailed us with stories of prison inmates as examples of families, and Juvie advocates who told us that serial rapists are just ‘misunderstood’ and need a hug.

    I walked out of that class and went to the ombudsman. She wasn’t invited back.

    So indoctrination goes wayyyy back.

    Comment by The_Livewire — March 25, 2013 @ 8:32 am - March 25, 2013

  7. Well, sf was here, to act Levi’s part.

    Yet another aspect has been sf’s convenient muddying of the waters. He claims the women “went way way over the line” by “condemn[ing] people to hell”. Yeah… except, they didn’t. They *warned* that they saw Hell coming for certain people. There is a difference. Telling someone “I see you rolling straight to a train wreck”, even if incorrectly, is NOT condemning them to it (not personally wishing or commanding the train wreck upon them). Bottom line: sf could stand to work on his reading comprehension, along with the rest.

    Comment by ILoveCapitalism — March 25, 2013 @ 10:49 am - March 25, 2013

  8. I believe there is a misconception when it comes to God and Hell. I don’t believe Hell is a place God casts people into; I believe it is a place he is trying to save us from.

    Comment by V the K — March 25, 2013 @ 11:21 am - March 25, 2013

  9. I believe it’s a place that people enter or leave, by changing their own thinking and actions. As the saying goes, “We are not condemned for our sins, but by them.” And even with that, you can escape by cleaning up your act, beginning (but not ending!) with your intentions/heart. Thus, you enter or leave Hell virtually at will[1]. God just wonders what you’re going to do next, and hopes/helps you do the right thing.

    But, I digress 🙂

    ([1] Again: ‘will’ as made effective by real action. We do not leave Hell, or for that matter enter it, by idly wishing.)

    Comment by ILoveCapitalism — March 25, 2013 @ 11:31 am - March 25, 2013

  10. You guys are really amazing. you’ll justify anything as long it come from someone backing your POV. It’s why this site has unfortunately become a joke. Bruce and Dan deserve better. Or maybe not, since they but up with this nonsense.

    Nothing like watching a “libertarian” blame other people for his behavior.

    I can’t wait to see what happens if Bruce decides to run, and people start scrutinizing th4e contents of this blog. I do hope Bruce is prepared to discuss why he’s allowed his commentors to keep posting some of the stuff that gets through. If he wants to delete my comment, I have no problem with that. If someone finds my comment, I’ll be dismissed as a troll by the right. I’ve been called much worse. But people are going to dig into this site. And it’s going to come back and bite him in a big way.

    Well, duh.

    After all, Sonic, you and your fellow Obama supporters spent the past twelve months screaming that Romney was a murderer, that Romney was a tax cheat, Romney was cruel to animals, Romney was going to ban tampons, Romney was going to put gays in concentration camps, on and on and on ad infinitum.

    Do you think conservatives haven’t figured this out by now? You and your fellow Obama supporters want power, and you don’t care how many lies, smears, character assassinations, and outlandish attacks you have to make to get it. There is literally nothing, NOTHING, that you and your fellow Obama bigots will not do to destroy anyone who attacks you.

    But there’s very little conservatives can do about it. You are not going to debate the issues, because you will lose. You are not going to act rationally, because that destroys your argument. You are not going to behave in an ethical fashion because that might mean your opponent will win. Instead you will lie, smear, obfuscate, attack, and do everything in your power to destroy Bruce and his family personally.

    Nothing you say is truthful, Sonic. Nothing. You have demonstrated that you are an unethical bigot, a liar who will say and do anything to force conservatives and Christians to shut up and give you what you want. You have demonstrated nothing but contempt for the values you demand we follow and have made it clear that you see others’ restraint in action as a sign of weakness.

    In short, you are like Hamas putting missile launchers in hospitals and schools. And like Hamas, you scream and cry and rationalize your disgusting behavior in the hopes that conservatives will be stupid enough to allow you to kill us.

    Comment by North Dallas Thirty — March 25, 2013 @ 11:42 am - March 25, 2013

  11. That’s a good distinction you make between “warning” and “condemning” in #57, Jeff. I thought the same thing when I read SF’s comment, but didn’t get around to writing a response.

    Comment by Kurt — March 25, 2013 @ 12:03 pm - March 25, 2013

  12. “Slut” is a term referring to a person’s (in SLANG usage, it does not even always have to be a woman’s) character or behavior.

    Wait…. What?

    OK.. If it’s parsing meaning that you want, you got it!

    Cunt: Cunt (pron.: /ˈkʌnt/) is a word for the female genitalia, particularly the vulva, and is widely considered to be vulgar.[1] The earliest citation of this usage in the 1972 Oxford English Dictionary, c 1230, refers to the London street known as Gropecunt Lane. Scholar Germaine Greer has said that “it is one of the few remaining words in the English language with a genuine power to shock.”[2]

    Cunt is also used as a derogatory epithet referring to people of either sex. This usage is relatively recent, dating from the late nineteenth century.[3] Reflecting different national usages, cunt is described as “an unpleasant or stupid person” in the Compact Oxford English Dictionary

    I find those women to be very unpleasant.

    Yet another aspect has been sf’s convenient muddying of the waters. He claims the women “went way way over the line” by “condemn[ing] people to hell”. Yeah… except, they didn’t. They *warned* that they saw Hell coming for certain people. There is a difference.

    Hair-split much? And i guess you missed the antisemitism contained in the comments of one of those “accomplished” women:

    This student not only reiterated that I will travel to Hell if I continued to act on my same-sex desires, but she went further in amplifying the first student’s proclamations by self-righteously insisting that I will not receive an invitation to enter Heaven if I do not accept Jesus as my personal savior since I am a Jew, regardless of my sexual behavior.

    Bueler…. Bueler…. Bueler…

    No, sf. Because Bruce didn’t do anything here. You did. Bruce probably doesn’t even know what you’ve done. It’s going to come back and bite YOU, if YOU ever (say) run for office. And I have no intention of covering it up for you (by deleting your comment).

    Please put you politics hat on and follow me. My comment will probably not hurt Bruce even if it were found by someone digging for dirt. This isn’t his thread. And since my politics and his don’t often line up, I would not be considered an ally, brother in arms as it were.

    I can pretty much say with some certainly that there are only a handful of comments authored by me that cross a line of decency (I’m sure there are a few more that can be questioned, and score-keeper NDT will be trying to find them as soon as I post this). Are there other comments that are as terse and politically unfriendly or worse, authored by other commentors over the last nine years Bruce has been running this blog????

    Yep.

    The problem Bruce might have is when those comments agree with a position he’s taken, but he didn’t take the time to warn the commentor that that behavior was not accepted here. And those comments are in the public domain, for all the world to find and exploit. Now I know that those are not Bruce’s words, and that is normally a sturdy defense. But this is politics, and unfortunately, the rule in politics are that there are no rules.

    Politics. Love the game… Hate the stench.

    But you might spare us your fake concern for Bruce.

    Screw you Jeff. You have no idea how I think of Bruce. In the seven plus years I’ve been a regular at GP, I think me and Bruce have only locked horns once. But even when we disagreed, he was never rude or condescending. Our politics converged more back then than they do now. I consider him a friend. It’s incredibly arrogant on your part to think you know anything about who I consider to be friends, and presume that I’m not concerned about potential fallout created by some of the comments that have appeared on Gay Patriot. You are a fool to think it and it shows incredibly poor judgement on your part.

    Comment by Sonicfrog — March 25, 2013 @ 12:30 pm - March 25, 2013

  13. sf: Actions talk… Bullsh*t walks.

    If your concern for Bruce were authentic, *then you would never have posted your ‘c*nt’ remark in the first place*, on his blog. You’ve admitted, in effect, that you were trolling. If you were authentically concerned for Bruce, you would not use his blog as a playground for your trolling.

    Or/and, you would have a better apology for all that, now. But, we see the case is otherwise. So yes, sf: Your concern for Bruce is, by your behavior, fake.

    Screw you Jeff.

    And so we see your true spirit, sf. I mean, we already did, but thank you for showing it that much more.

    Comment by ILoveCapitalism — March 25, 2013 @ 12:35 pm - March 25, 2013

  14. spam filter

    After all, Sonic, you and your fellow Obama supporters spent the past twelve months screaming that Romney was a murderer, that Romney was a tax cheat, Romney was cruel to animals, Romney was going to ban tampons, Romney was going to put gays in concentration camps, on and on and on ad infinitum.

    Yawn. Boring. Predictable. I wonder if you even know what your writing, or if you are just cutting and pasting form the other lame comments you’ve posted over the last year? And i would love to see you try and find quote of me saying anything like you just asserted.

    Nothing you say is truthful, Sonic. Nothing.

    I’m 5’5″.

    Comment by Sonicfrog — March 25, 2013 @ 12:37 pm - March 25, 2013

  15. Jeff did you not read the first part of that post, or are you just ignoring it?

    Comment by Sonicfrog — March 25, 2013 @ 12:40 pm - March 25, 2013

  16. NOTE TO ALL: I have decided to close this thread to further comments. Apologies to Kurt and all. It’s unfair, that you should have to suffer (be unable to comment / discuss further). However, sf clearly wishes to continue his defense of calling women “c*nts” here, which is morally like perpetrating it anew. In the interest of protecting this blog as well as women, it’s time to enforce a stop.

    sf’s voice is NOT being silenced. For one thing, he has a blog (or can start one, if he does not) where he may criticize me, NDT, or whomever he wants, to his heart’s content. For another thing, my action here is a “time out” on his defense of calling certain women ‘c*nts’; not a ban of his person or his future remarks.

    Comment by ILoveCapitalism — March 25, 2013 @ 12:41 pm - March 25, 2013

  17. […] Kurt at The Gay Patriot: […]

    Pingback by Welcome To Indoctrination University…Where Liberals Are Always Right | Flopping Aces — March 27, 2013 @ 2:31 pm - March 27, 2013

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