Sociology Professor Declares Diversity of Thought Is “A Trojan Horse For White Identity Politics”

downloadThere has been a rising movement in colleges and universities led by professors who are advocating speech regulation and contesting basic values of free speech.  The anti-free speech movement takes many forms.  I previously voiced my objections to Antifa and its anti-free speech values, including academics legitimizing efforts to violently curtail free speech on our campuses.  One of the most recent examples is the writing of University of Tennessee sociology Professor Victor Ray who explained in a column in Inside Higher Ed that diversity of thought is something of a trap and is in reality “a Trojan horse for white identity politics.”

Ray teaches women’s studies and ethnic studies classes and explained that diversity of thought is something of a scam of conservatives:

“Conservative ideas are hegemonic. The (empty) call for so-called diversity of thought is a Trojan horse for white identity politics. It is no coincidence that the majority of people advocating for this position are white men who feel slighted by an imagined diminution of their power. They remain stubbornly at the top of the organizational hierarchy across the landscape of higher education, and their calls for so-called diversity of thought are attempts to extend this lead.”

We have been discussing the rising intolerance and violence on college campuses, particularly against conservative speakers. (Here and here and here and here). Berkeley has been the focus of much concern over mob rule on our campuses as violent protesters have succeeded in silencing speakers, even including a few speakers like an ACLU officials and James Comey.  Both students and some faculty have maintained the position that they have a right to silence those with whom they disagree and even student newspapers have declared opposing speech to be outside of the protections of free speech.  At another University of California campus, professors actually rallied around a professor who physically assaulted pro-life advocates and tore down their display.  In the meantime, academics and deans have said that there is no free speech protection for offensive or “disingenuous” speech.  CUNY Law Dean Mary Lu Bilek has insisted that disrupting the speech on free speech was free speech.

Ray writes the “Conditionally Accepted” column at Inside Higher Ed. It appears that his different thoughts are inherently worthy of such publication.  However, conservatives offer nothing to an academic or social discourse:

“What is diverse about a body of thought reliably in support of a reactionary status quo? Those people who claim universities are insufficiently open to conservatives often pose as brilliant, renegade outsiders, presenting dangerous knowledge that the politically correct educational establishment has unfairly marginalized. But there is nothing edgy or very thoughtful about denigrating people of color or women, assuming that the natural order of the world is out of order because we had a black United States president or attacking trans students for simply existing. Much of what counts of edgy for folk like Ferguson is simply self-serving masculinist bluster. And much of what counts as dangerous is more accurately described as wrong.”

This type of shallow, jingoistic logic passes for theory in today’s advocacy-based academics. There is an effort to relieve oneself of any obligation to respect the right of others to speak or be heard.  You simply declare that their views are “nothing edgy or very thoughtful” and be done with it . . . and them.  Indeed, you can run a diatribe against free speech and pluralism in a publication that calls itself Inside Higher Ed.

54 thoughts on “Sociology Professor Declares Diversity of Thought Is “A Trojan Horse For White Identity Politics””

  1. It’s just more anti-White racism and anti-Men sexism from our domestic enemies.

    You do have to “love,” however, how our domestic enemies always frame their attacks upon normative Americans as “imagined diminution of their power” or claim that reductions in [unearned, one assumes] look like oppression but aren’t.

  2. For the past six years I have had at least one child in a university, so, I speak with a modicum of authority on the topic as I have known and spoken to many college students. These kids are not stupid, at least most of them are not stupid. Fortunately, they recognize when their professors act like fools. They tow the party line in class in order to protect their grades, but mock the idiot professors behind their backs. As a result, the politically correct educational class is unwittingly creating a generation of adults who disrespect the current purveyors of higher education. I predict we will see a change in the next generation.

  3. It is ironic that so many universities are openly opposed to diversity of thought and speech. At least they are being honest.

    One of the advantages of a capitalist fairly free economy is competition. A new university would be a market leader if they did the following:
    1. Only offered serious, marketable degrees with high rates of employment. No basket weaving.
    2. Had strict rules against professors brining their personal politics to class. Classes are to be about the educational topic, alone. No one wants to know who their English professor voted for or where she protested last weekend.
    3. Tolerance to oppositional ideas are taught. Don’t like something, walk away.
    4. No segregation allowed. No black dorms and other Liberal Renaissance of Jim Crow days.
    5. One of the undergrad courses offer is in critical reasoning and debate. No safe spaces or bubbles provided.
    6. Bathrooms – there will be women’s and men’s restrooms, with some single unisex bathrooms offered here and there.
    7. High standards for admittance, and professors, which would make the resulting degree valuable. Professors also need to be good teachers for undergrads, not just brilliant minds, published, who cannot teach their way out of a paper bag.

    Above all, such a university must be viewed as higher learning, not a Democratic madrassa nor some Republican counterpart. Above the fray, and a return to intellectualism and curiosity. Everyone welcome but placement earned on merit alone. No quotas. If you get in, you earned it. No speakers shouted down or threatened. They should design lecture halls for outside speakers with security in mind, and no protesters shall gain access. Like all schools K-12, armed security should be present on campus. If there is an allegation of sexual assault, it would be reported to the police, and the accused only suspended pending the outcome of the criminal investigation. No more universities pretending to be the criminal justice system.

    1. It is ironic that so many universities are openly opposed to diversity of thought and speech. At least they are being honest.

      It’s not ironic. It’s an ineluctable consequence of how they view the society around them and what they think their place in it is. Problem: we are using these institutions to sort the labor market. We need to reduce their role in labor development, reduce the flow of funds to them, take their privileges away, and can about 40% of them.

  4. I visited the University in Knoxville once. Clear back then that Football was a big thing for them.

    And locally, WSU was the 4th rated school in sociology. The current faculty state that they try to maintain this. Not likely to read such garbage from any of them.

    1. David Benson still owes me two citations after three weeks and now a quotation WSU is ranked 42nd in the nation for its sociology grad department.

  5. The right-wingers who are calling for free speech on university campuses have no qualms about the president pressuring NFL owners into stopping players from exercising their own rights.

    If people on public campuses have the right to speak freely, NFL players should be able to as well without interference from the president.

    1. NFL players are employees of a private company and they are introducing (on company time) political exhibitionism in a forum where it had previously been absent.

      State colleges are state colleges, and the faculty and the favored students there have no inhibitions about stating their own views and shouting down everyone else.

      1. The NFL can change policies if it wants.

        That’s not the point.

        The president pressured the league to punish players. The government should not be actively trying to restrict free expression.

        It wasn’t a First Amendment issue until the president got involved.

        1. Their ‘free expression’ is not ‘restricted’. They’re at work. You don’t have rights of ‘free expression’ contra your employer unless its in the contract. It’s also wholly inappropriate in that particular setting. Inviting an outside speaker to give a lecture in a college auditorium is wholly appropriate. That’s what they are there for and leftoid speakers have free rein.

        2. The fact that you can’t or don’t know the difference between college and the NFL shows the trouble we are in.

      2. Playing a tune and expecting everyone to stand with hand over heart is NOT political exhibitionism?

        You would do very well In North Korea.

        1. Playing a tune and expecting everyone to stand with hand over heart is NOT political exhibitionism?

          Not really, no, and wouldn’t have been considered such by any large body of people prior to 1965. You only have one country, but since that time an increasingly large share of the professional-managerial class fancies they’re a superior tribe forced for practical reasons to live amongst us deplorables. You’re not who you think you are, and you are not an asset.

    2. Football players have every right to exercise their rights to freedom of speech ON THEIR OWN TIME. When they are on the field, they are on the clock-they are paid EMPLOYEES. Football is a business. It exists to make money for the team owners. When paying spectators are offended by the behavior of protesting players, money can and has been lost. Are you permitted to engage in political protest, politic or deliberately offend customers or clients at your place of employment on company time?

  6. “Treason doth never prosper: what ’s the reason?
    Why, if it prosper, none dare call it treason.”

    ― John Harrington

  7. And what exactly is wrong with “white identity” politics, or “white politics”??? Take the word “white” out of the terms and what you get is “identity politics” and “nationalism.” Which, “identity politics” is constantly practiced by the Left and “nationalism” is practiced by every country on the frigging planet.

    These Democrats and Leftist/Progressive idiots have made a negative and pejorative adjective out of the word “white”, and a lot of stupid white people support that. Why would anybody support the demonization of their own race??? Why would any self-respecting white person vote for a Democrat??? That is the exact equivalent of a Jew voting for a Nazi.

    Squeeky Fromm
    Girl Reporter

    1. Here in Washington state most are “white”, some are Asian American, some are so-called Hispanic, a few are African American and even fewer are American Indians. Yet, the Democrats tend to attract the majority of the voters and partly as a result the economy is doing quite nicely.

      We crank through our problems in reasonably good order and we don’t want your sort around here.

      1. Wow! That’s amazing! I heard just days ago that Seattle has a severe problem with homelessness. Fixed overnight as you “crank through your problems in reasonable good order”.

    2. Time for the Brownshirt poster; to all the gullible rubes and dupes: this is your fellow traveler, wear it well. Although, I rather thought the domestic version of your ilk preferred whitesheet.

      This is to the squeeKKK

      1. Marky Mark Mark – if you were half the legal researcher Squeeky is you wouldn’t have to be doing so many plea deals.

      2. Yet your verbal definition refers to the national socialists – a leftist organization and KKK of the old DNC AKA The party of slavery . Why does the left insist on defining it’s opponents as the face they see in the mirror?

    3. Squeeky,
      “And what exactly is wrong with “white identity” politics, or “white politics”??? Take the word “white” out of the terms and what you get is “identity politics” and “nationalism.” Which, “identity politics” is constantly practiced by the Left and “nationalism” is practiced by every country on the frigging planet.”

      The problem is the same for any other race or gender or whatever-based politics–tribalism and the eradication of the individual.

      1. For one they don’t have to think very much, hardly at all, in the ruling class of the left in order to program the bulk of their group grope aka The Collective… where thinking is not allowed.

  8. Universities routinely require students to submit research papers citing peer reviewed publications. Students are taught that opinions alone are inconclusive. Ray has expressed an inflamatory hypothesis but any member of academia worth their salt and any academic institution that employs them expects that hypothesis to be challenged using unbiased and fundamentally sound scientific study and analysis. Their research and findings should then be published and subjected to peer review before being taught to students. Otherwise, Ray’s opinions are no better than partisan dogma he accuses others of conveying. If Ray is to be considered academically credible and worthy of inclusion on a university faculty, then I challenge him to submit his research and findings for peer review so that everyone can scrutinize, not just his findings, but how he arrived at them, No less is expected of the students he teaches.

    1. Good thoughts Blaine but don’t bet the mortgage that our bomb throwing racist has any notion of being subjected to rigorous academic scrutiny. He’s a graffiti vandal on the ivory tower not a mural artist.

    2. You instruct at Hillsdale or Grove? the rest, by our definition are deleted from consideration barring the phenomena of students gaming the professors .

  9. Part of me wonders if the following statement is true “…has insisted that disrupting the speech on free speech was free speech.” then why have not conservatives returned the favor and disrupted liberal speakers. Taking the high road only works if there is a ramification for taking the low road. Since there seems to be no consequences for liberal actions, than you need to fight back and stop being a victim conservatives! A war in favor of free speech is worth fighting for.

  10. “It is no coincidence that the majority of people advocating for this position are white men who feel slighted by an imagined diminution of their power.”
    Substitute the word “black” for “white” in this sentence and Inside Higher Education wouldn’t consider publishing this essay as it shouldn’t. Wonder why this type of racism is peachy keen in the academe but the other way isn’t? Guilt is a terrible thing but hypocrisy tops it by miles.

    1. Inside Higher Education is run by people who conceive of themselves as advocates for our wretched system. (I’ve been effectively banned from their site for jabbing and nose-tweaking the editors’ favored commenters).

  11. So successful are these social justice / censoring professors that Washington’s college with the worst repute, The Evergreen State College, is facing an 18.5% decline in enrollment for this year. This is on top of a 5% decrease from last year.

    I suspect that at some point the legislature will become involved and even the most liberal of politicians will have some decisions to make that would not be favorable to the college’s longevity in its present form if this trend continues.

    The best outcome for preserving a college located in Olympia would be to dismantle the current curricula and staffing and reorganize as a satellite branch of the University of Washington.

    1. Shut it and discharge the employees. You make use of the idled physical plant to up a new college with an appointed foundational board and rehire from the body of Evergreen employees the hourly staff, salaried technicians and professionals, and those administrators who worked in physical plant, purchasing, and finance. The only faculty you’d ever consider rehiring would be from the departments of biology, business, chemistry, computer science, and mathematics.

    2. Darren Smith – make Evergreen a satellite of WSU, that is where David Benson was teaching. They deserve each other.

    3. Reincarnate the college with Bret Weinstein as the new president?

    4. Why is UDUBya any better? The football team? Evergreen had Slater-Kinney, Poking fun.

  12. You have to realize who he is writing for, his core audience. That is what makes this guy dangerous. Have you noticed that a lot of these whacked out ideas come from sociology professors? I think we need to shut down the sociology departments and put these people to work at Mickey Ds, where they belong.

    1. He’s about as dangerous as dog do on the sidewalk. The ruin of intellectual life as manifest in a sack of pus like this guy is what is dismaying. You need to go Kenesaw Mountain Landis on these faculties. If you don’t start imposing penalties on weak and other-directed faculty members, they’re going to continue to give the sectaries on the faculty what they want – i.e. more sectaries. The way to motivate English professors to quit allocating positions to people who use literary study as an excuse to engage in cut-rate sociology is to put the entire sociology faculty out on the curb. The trustees can do that by declaring sociology to not be a part of the instituiton’s book.

      1. It is an old trick for employees teetering on being declared redundant to engage in empire building to justify their position.

        1. I’m not getting your point. What does that have to due with the ruined state of one department after another?

    2. Yet Princeton leads with Danielle Allen and Evergreen is tucked away out of sight of the free way which is probably best.

  13. Sociology and cultural anthropology are badly corrupted disciplines. Much the same has happened to American history. The trustees of most institutions would be acting responsibly by closing these departments and discharging the faculty Ditto the comparative literature faculty. Ditto the English department, though perhaps less frequently. There are a selection of vocational faculties for which this would also commonly be a responsible act: teacher training, social work, library administration, and law.

  14. I am conflicted regarding the reporting of these antics. One one hand, free publicity for this nonsense in some way slightly legitimizes it through perceived normalization. On the other hand, this tomfoolery apparently won’t end until the adults in the room and who write the checks (alumni) see their alma mater represented as a laughingstock.

      1. If the loci where I’ve worked are representative, alumni who are active in said associations and who land on boards tend to be witless institutional boosters anxious about bad publicity which might devalue their degree. They’re likely to be hostile to dissenting faculty and to dissenting alumni alike. Trustees are just about worthless and concern themselves with little beyond budget, fundraising, physical plant, and the athletic program to the extent that they’re not marking time in meetings until they can hit the links. They only stakeholders who matter are the faculty and a section of the administration. When the fiscal condition of the school is bad enough that faculty and administration may be subject to layoffs, they may begin to consider grudging concessions to the wider world.

        It might help if Trustees were elected by a state-supervised postal ballot of alumni registered to vote in the state in question and if boards were not so unwieldy – if the board has 11 members and not 60 members. Might help. Not guaranteed to help. Replacing academic tenure with renewable multi-year contracts and regulatory limits on the number of p/t faculty might also help. Ditto radical restriction of faculty governance.

        1. “If the loci where I’ve worked are representative, alumni who are active in said associations and who land on boards tend to be witless institutional boosters anxious about bad publicity which might devalue their degree.”

          Lackeys and boat stabilizers all IMHO.

  15. Wonder what they would do if College/University level funding suddenly dried up as part of a … national 30% cut for solvency control and which psuedo sciences would be screaming the loudest and longest. My o my and these cupcake snowflakes are expected to teach 4 hours a week?

    But my advise would be a good pair of leather gloves and go find a ditch to dig. After sinking to the level described one should be ready for ‘shovel’ ready.

    1. There was a labor row in, I believe it was, the University of Washington recently where student teacher’s aides were complaining that $32.00 an hour was too low for them.

      1. Maybe Making Stuff Up. I read news about Washington state daily and I don’t recall a thing.

        1. David Benson still owes me two citations after three weeks, one from the OED, and now a quotation, – what you don’t recall would fill the entire state of Washington.

        2. Always a start point ….. most of the leads referred to GW in Washingon DC. Some stories get better (or worse) with the telling.

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