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Old 09-25-2006, 08:47 PM   #1
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Normal The College Liberal Bias

Let me start off by saying that I'm not a Republican or a Democrat. I am however definitely more Democrat than Republican.
When I started college in 2003, it was great to be surrounded by so many adults that had the same anti-Bush ideals that I had. In high school I had mostly Republican Bush supporters and students that had an interest in politics were hard to come by.
So here's college and come fall 2004 I have perhaps the most biased teacher I've ever encountered. Prior to the election, he played a few Michael Moore videos that were amusing and made snide remarks about Bush at any expense (I had no problem with it). On election day he made sure we all knew who he was supporting by wearing a t-shirt, a cap, a button and writing: VOTE FOR KERRY on the board.
That Thursday he spent the entire class bitching about Bush's second term and had a class discussion about it. Or rather, he just gave us topics and let us rip at each other's throats.
After that it has been pretty quiet. Just a few comments here and then by science professors which I really don't mind.

Now I have two classes where liberal ideals are being pushed down our throats. My professor today recited nearly word for word a diatribe that one of Bill Maher's guests said this week on his show. The class spirals out of it's content and goes into a "this government is giving us so much fear and propaganda!" spiel. I sit in the back of the class drawing cartoons because I've heard it before. I'm not there to hear that. I'm there to be introduced into Journalism. And not biased Journalism. I'm trying to learn how to be unbiased!
The same thing with my online class. All of his written notes are constantly bashing the Bush administration as well as all the videos he makes us watch.

Really, I wouldn't mind if it was me that was going out and seeking this conversations. But I'm in school to learn something new and most of the time I don't feel like I'm getting it. Not to mention I can't even imagine what it's like for any Republican or Pro-Bush students in the classroom. At one point in our theater appreciation class where our professor invited Greenpeace over to talk about their arrest for saving some Brazilian trees (it's a long story), as well as some Bush bashing, the guy sitting next to me says in a whisper, "I don't think I can take any more of this, I'm Republican."

I don't know my point. I'm just upset that I'm going to class and being bored out of my mind by this stuff. I guess it's because I'm used to being in the minority. Like when I've been called a dirty Democrat at family parties, I just know how it feels to be singled out and have your beliefs bashed all over the floor, especially at a place and situation where it's not appropriate.
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Old 09-25-2006, 09:16 PM   #2
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Being someone who, to say the least, does not agree with Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld and the rest of them - I can relate to what you're saying. There is nothing more irritating than Liberal Fundamentalism (O.K. Right Wing Fundamentalism is worse but only slightly!!!). I am like you and would always lean towards Democrats over Republicans (actually I really wish there were more "Independents" but that's a whole other story). My advice to you is to challenge these professors - play the Devils advocate once in awhile - just to get a rise out of them and to see if they can back up they're beliefs. Get back to us about it - I'd love to hear how it goes.
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Old 09-25-2006, 10:28 PM   #3
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That's the reality of college. Academia has always been left-leaning.

To be honest, it doesn't bother me at all. At the law school, we have professors who are definitely right leaning (especially any in corporate/tax) and we have ones that are definitely leaning towards social justice. I don't really get offended either way, and believe me they rant with the best of them.
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Old 09-25-2006, 10:33 PM   #4
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What are the topics of these two classes supposed to be?
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Old 09-25-2006, 10:34 PM   #5
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I've been thinking about this for a few minutes and honestly, here is a cross section of my profs:

One despises the Monarchy and wishes to hell we could abolish it.

Another holds the medical profession in utter contempt.

Another one rants and raves about Quebec raping the Constitution.

Another one wants to acquit everyone.

Then there's the one who worked in trusts and estates and can't stand the upper classes. Not to be outdone by the one who spends half of his class raving about how poorly we're treating people on welfare and the dozens of moral shortcomings we are guilty of.

I think it's par for the course to be honest.
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Old 09-25-2006, 10:35 PM   #6
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But it's getting to the point that they aren't even discussing course content.
Today she drew out some charts on the board that she was on the way to discussing before she got sidetracked and spent the entire class discussing Bush and Clinton.
It didn't bother me all that much in my requesite courses because I wasn't really going to use that in my career, but I'm trying to get serious about Journalism. This is really a testing phase for me to see if I'd enjoy a career in it. If I wanted to discuss politics solely, I'd take a politics class.
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Old 09-25-2006, 10:37 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally posted by yolland
What are the topics of these two classes supposed to be?
Intro to Journalism and Mass Media and Communication. I suppose the discussion can be looped back through all this stuff, but sometimes there's just not even a connection. Like today we went into a 10 minute discussion about who has been profiled racially in the class. The topic for the day was the War of the Worlds radio broadcast.
And with the VOTE FOR KERRY professor, it was a Myth, Ritual And Mysticism class. That one was by far worst.
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Old 09-25-2006, 11:06 PM   #8
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I'm fairly leftist, but I can agree that any kind of condescending political preaching would annoy the hell out of me. It was apparently ripe at the college I went to for my B.A., but I was fortunate enough to be able to avoid all of those kinds of classes as a benefit of being in their Honors College.

Thankfully, my own media courses never devolved into that kind of nonsense. The only class I took that sounded like a mouthpiece for political ideology, actually, was my microeconomics course that I was forced to take, and it sounded like nothing but an infomercial for the Republican Party.

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Old 09-25-2006, 11:09 PM   #9
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Originally posted by anitram
I think it's par for the course to be honest.
Reminds me of my high school French teacher who spent half her classes bitching about Mexicans being nothing but illegal immigrants. All the more ironic, considering she was an immigrant herself.

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Old 09-25-2006, 11:42 PM   #10
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We have plugs for every seat in all my lecture halls and wireless so frankly when they start yammering, Ebay and MSN come on.
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Old 09-25-2006, 11:49 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally posted by anitram
We have plugs for every seat in all my lecture halls and wireless so frankly when they start yammering, Ebay and MSN come on.
Really? Wow, that's technology. When I was in college (late 80s), wireless referred to television remote controls.
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Old 09-25-2006, 11:57 PM   #12
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Intro to Journalism and Mass Media and Communication.

The course title should say it all: Communication. However, it sounds like the prof could be sabotaging the potential for meaningful discussion, and simply pushing an agenda. That's just sad. Any kind of fundamentalist idea, be it left, right, or whatever, just furthers polarization, and actually leads to a lack of dialogue on the biggest issues of our time.

All profs are obviously free to push personal ideas, but the good ones will always counterpoint themselves to give students an accurate representation of all points of view--not just their own. This should be especially true in any journalism/media course. The ability to have perspective in journalism is paramount.

I'd follow-through on Harry Vest's suggestion to challenge things you're uncomfortable with. It might be very difficult at first, if you fear being vilified or isolated. However, I've found that most profs will actually respect you in the long run if you spark something, and share what you're feeling inside. (Of course, this is probably not true if your prof happens to be truly crazy, or is just really bad.)

As far as the attitude you see being "par for the course" and part of left-leaning academia, aspects of this may be true. However, from my vantage point in Canada, I get the real sense that some in the US are actually overcompensating in their efforts to push back against the perceived right-wing agenda.

That's just as bad as, well, a right-wing agenda.
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Old 09-26-2006, 12:01 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally posted by angelordevil


The ability to have perspective in journalism is paramount.
Bingo!
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Old 09-26-2006, 12:02 AM   #14
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If a democrat and a republican graduate high school and enroll in college, which one is more likely to enter teaching? Which one is more likely to enter business?

It's pretty obvious. Consequently, academia will always lean left.

Wait till you get into the corporate world. You'll find that most of the people with influence in your company are republicans. But you deal with it.

Political bias among high school teachers is one thing. I think college students are old enough to handle it.
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Old 09-26-2006, 12:11 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally posted by LPU2
If a democrat and a republican graduate high school and enroll in college, which one is more likely to enter teaching? Which one is more likely to enter business?

It's pretty obvious. Consequently, academia will always lean left.

Wait till you get into the corporate world. You'll find that most of the people with influence in your company are republicans. But you deal with it.

Political bias among high school teachers is one thing. I think college students are old enough to handle it.
I'm not complaining about the fact that there is a bias. I knew there would be one going into college. I knew that I'd have something to look forward to from my high school experience, like I said in my first post.
I'm complaining that it's starting to get in the way of my studies. I'm not paying to sit in on a class that just sits around and bashes the Bush administration.
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