The Spectacle Blog

The Weakest Link

By on 6.10.08 | 4:02AM

Academia gives insufficient due to conservative ideas, an insight that isn't exactly original, but that I mention here because despite the fact that I'm sympathetic to its premise I think this is the worst opinion piece I've ever read.

Admittedly, I am biased -- poorly written columns bother me most when their absurdity can be used to discredit arguments I care about. I'd very much like, for example, to persuade fair-minded people that the academy should recommit itself to intellectual diversity, that aspects of the modern curriculum are frivolous, etc.

My cause isn't helped when a widely read conservative Web site publishes a piece on the subject that begins as follows:

An Obama presidency would signal the final salvo by the Left in the culture wars. Obama's advance troops have already taken over our college campuses, have bound and gagged our conservative professors, have ravished our virgins, have pillaged our stores of wisdom, and have ensconced themselves in the thrones of power in deans', presidents' and department heads' offices.

The victory cry is heard across the land in the cheers of Obama's constituency on college campuses.

This has been going on under the very noses of the Republicans.

It's almost unseemly to single out merely one of those clauses for mockery, but I can't help it: ravishing our virgins? Really? Also, "our" virgins? The mind boggles.

As a general rule, I am confident that centrist and right-of-center voices on campus can marshal the strength of the best conservative and libertarian ideas to refute the worst excesses of the academy... but it sure would be easier if Townhall spikes the next column that distorts conservative arguments into their most absurd form.
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