Trumpaganda?

The eerie Trump Derangement Syndrome escalating in academia.

All of the Democrat talking heads in the media—i.e. 95% or so of the American media—lost what was little left of their brains this past week when Kanye West joined and applauded President Trump in the White House.

Popular culture celebrities, like “journalists” and pundits, are overwhelmingly left-of-center. But one particularly famous among these, celebrates a Republican president—and Donald Trump, of all people!—and it is one celebrity too many for Democrats.

Though no reader of this column needs any reminding of it, the fact is that academia, too, is a bastion of Democratic Party politics.  Fortunately, there are some excellent campus watchdog organizations that regularly expose the ideological fanaticism that pervades today’s colleges and universities.

The University of Illinois-Champaign supplies us with an especially revealing illustration of the politicization of education.  Beginning on October 22, the school will roll out its new journalism course:

“Trumpaganda: The War on Facts, Press, and Democracy.”

The course description is rich. It purports to explore “the Trump administration’s disinformation campaign” and “its ‘running war’ with the mainstream news media,” as well as “their implications for American democracy and a free press.”

The course description also asserts that when Trump was a presidential candidate, he “employed the most common propaganda device, name-calling, to define, degrade, discredit and destroy his primary opponents as well as the ‘fake’ news media.” Two years into his presidency, the President’s “rhetorical attacks on mainstream media continue” as he labels them “‘the enemy of the people.’”

The description adds that while prior “American administrations have had a contentious relationship with the news media,” Trump’s administration is in a league of its own in this regard, for its “conflict with the press is different in strategies and tactics [.]”  Such approaches have had the effect of “challenging Americans’ tendency to think of propaganda as something that doesn’t happen in democratic societies.”

Not to be undone, San Diego State University now offers a one-credit course which focuses on removing Trump from office.

As Campus Reform reports, there is but one required text for the course. The text is The Case for Impeachment. Its author, Allan Lichtman, is an avowed opponent of Trump and wrote this book specifically in order to make the case for impeaching the President.

According to the course titled, “Trump: Impeachment, Removal, or Conviction?” focus will be on “the two constitutional grounds” of “impeachment and removal (25th Amendment) [.]” Other topics like those of the independent counsel and presidential powers are also explored. 

Moreover, the course will examine such “grounds for impeachment, removal, or indictment” as “conflicts of interest, foreign emoluments,” “conspiracy, false statements, and obstruction of justice,” it is true.  But this course identifies as other grounds for impeaching, removing, and/or indicting President Trump such things as “climate change, racism,” and “religious bias [.]”

Over at Eastern Kentucky University, students and faculty labored inexhaustibly to prevent Donald Trump from holding a rally on campus.  According to Campus Reform, the anti-Trump academics and their erstwhile pupils “participated in unity marches” and “petitioned university officials [.]”

A group of some 120 faculty members wrote an open letter to the board of regents and EKU’s president in which they expressed their “profound opposition” to Trump’s rally plans. While assuring the addressees that the faculty signatories, constituting, as they (supposedly) do, a “diverse” group, have no objections to the rally’s “political content,” they nevertheless “must object to this campaign which has consistently, openly, and unambiguously attacked the values of inquiry, learning, and free speech which lie at the heart of higher education and form the core mission of this University.”

The indignant faculty insists that Trump’s “assault on those values” are “not a matter of debate.”

Trump and his followers have attacked, not just specific findings in the sciences, but the entire scientific enterprise itself. “Towards the physical and biological sciences, the campaign has consistently and deliberately sought to undermine, not any particular fields or hypotheses, but the very legitimacy of the project of scientific inquiry.”

The President, according to this statement, has succeeded in making “many students and aspiring scientists question the value of pursuing scientific careers.”

As for the humanities and “social sciences,” the assault has been, “if anything, even more insidious,” for Trump and his people “have perverted argumentative techniques that look for multiple meanings in human endeavors by asserting instead that there are multiple ‘alternative truths’ that need not be proven but only enforced by the exercise of political and economic power and, when necessary, violence.”

The most fundamental reason for the faculty’s “profound opposition” to Trump, though, is his campaign’s (alleged) assault against “the very foundations of shared discourse and free speech upon which academic inquiry and civil society rest.” The Trump campaign’s representatives “have worked to silence and discredit opponents rather than entering into dialogue with them, while those same representatives have objectified and demonized countless minority and disenfranchised groups who have made easy targets for their exclusionary rhetoric [.]”

Among these groups are “women, people of color, immigrants, and the LGBTQA community.”

I offer little in the way of commentary on these episodes from the world of higher ed. They speak for themselves. However, I add simply this:

Anyone who still denies that academia is a Democrat Party stronghold is either self-delusional, naïve, or an out-and-out liar.

(And incidentally, Trump did indeed have his rally at EKU this past Saturday night.)   

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