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Truly Right View » Department of Education, Government Waste, Politics, Restoring America, Where is the Main Stream Media? » A Defense of Hillsdale and Its President

A Defense of Hillsdale and Its President

When I recently heard that the president of my school, Hillsdale
College, was in hot water for making racist remarks at a state
hearing on education, I was stunned.

But upon learning the facts, it was immediately obvious that
this was simply another case of liberal scandal-mongers scraping
the bottom of the barrel to try to discredit one of the nation’s
finest — and most conservative — colleges.

Hillsdale College President Dr. Larry Arnn was speaking at a
Michigan Department of Education hearing in Lansing last Wednesday
on his opposition to Common Core curriculum (which should be the
real story here, but we’ve conveniently managed to cut that out of
the conversation). Arnn presented his argument against state
interference in education, and included a story of state officials
visiting Hillsdale College in 1998 to inspect the school’s “racial
diversity.” Arnn was outraged – as am I – that the state would act
in such a blatantly race-based manner. Not to be Mr. Obvious here,
but to have bureaucrats walking around the campus of a top-tier
college with clipboards, taking notes on the skin color of the
students they see, is by definition
 because it doesn’t recognize a person’s character
or individuality, but only the color of their skin.

Arnn sought to express disgust at the backwards and dehumanizing
actions of the state officials, which were revealed when he later
received a letter from the Michigan Department of Education. The
letter, he said, notified him that Hillsdale College “violated the
standards for diversity because we didn’t have enough dark ones, I
guess, is what they meant.”

“To that I told them, we are probably the first college in human
history, certainly one of them, founded with a charter that says we
will take black and white men and women without any
discrimination,” Arnn said.

The committee members immediately took offense at the use of the
term “dark ones.” Such stunning adeptness at bending over backwards
to find offense in a statement by ignoring the plainly-stated
context — which had just been declared literally right in front of
them moments before — is truly astonishing, and depicts either a
mind-hobbling willful ignorance or a frightful ineptitude of the
English language. Never mind that the term was only meant as an
ironic slam against the hypocrisy of state officials who preach the
virtues of a color-blind society, and then measure students by skin
color alone. The point was clearly so above the committee members’
heads that it almost took out a satellite.

Who has time to listen to what the man said when you could be
taking offense?

The Michigan Department of Education originally denied any such
visit and letter, only
to recant
and acknowledge the episode on Thursday. In the
meantime, Arnn and Hillsdale College have issued
clarifying statements
to apologize for any offense taken
because of Arnn’s remarks.

Anyone who seeks to advance the cause of civil rights, racial
integration, and social diversity in the U.S. would do well to
recognize that Hillsdale College has always been one of the
foremost proponents of racial equality in America’s history. It was
the first American college to ban discrimination based on race,
religion, or sex in its charter, and it was founded by Freewill
Baptists in 1844 in fierce opposition to slavery. Hillsdale’s
founders were also instrumental in creating the Republican Party as
an anti-slavery party soon after, leading to the election of
Abraham Lincoln as president in 1860.

As a current senior at Hillsdale College, I know that the
school’s legacy as a bastion of liberty and classical education is
still honored and upheld by its student body and faculty, with a
determination rooted in an understanding of and dedication to the
principles of freedom that Hillsdale was founded to defend. This is
especially true of Dr. Arnn, who has been an exceptional
representative of the college since he became its president.

Now you may understand my total shock and exasperation to hear
the accusations against Dr. Arnn. But sadly, we already know that
liberals aren’t used to letting facts get in their way. So go
ahead: Accuse one of the first colleges on the planet to grant
degrees to African Americans and women of harboring racism and
bigotry. Good luck with that.

Read more Complete
A Defense of Hillsdale and Its President

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Filed under: Department of Education, Government Waste, Politics, Restoring America, Where is the Main Stream Media? · Tags: , ,

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