Protecting Students from Themselves?

Posted on March 13, 2018

I have student debt. Actually, my daughter does. And lots of it. To hear President Trump talk about it, we needed an intervention. To protect ourselves from….ourselves.

With all due respect, Mr. President (and you know nothing good every follows ‘with all due respect’) your gold-plated teething spoon has clouded your vision. My daughter and the millions of students that came before and after and have been saddled with debt, do not need a government intervention into what schools to attend or how much to pay.  No! They (we) could, however, use a hand in REDUCING THE COST OF HIGHER EDUCATION.

That’s an intervention I’d actually pay to see.

Schools are facing pricing pressures. We get that. Schools are seeing income pressure. We get that too. As such, schools say they have only so many choices: reduce enrollment; reduce services, raise prices; generate revenue from new, alternative sources. And yet, the value that providers of postsecondary education have a task that’s as or more important today than at any time in our national history. We have more than a generation of adults who need more learning…professional, career, academic, life-enhancing education…than at virtually any time in our national history.

While decrying foreign workers and former manual laborers needing retraining, our President and Secretary of Education say that the government should distance itself from helping; helping to pay and helping to actually provide the education and skills they say we need most.  The President of Dillard College agrees with the administration, writing recently that he thinks students need protection from themselves and goes so far as to blame students and families for their lack of control.

There is no question that we’re borrowing too much money to pay for higher education. But blaming the student is like blaming the hen when the wolf visits the henhouse. The system is broken and the current administration needs to act rather than point fingers. A problem is today; a solution could be forever.

Victim shaming, of all kinds, should be outlawed.

The Battle for America’s Soul Has Resumed

Posted on March 2, 2018

Forget politics. This isn’t about that. This is about morality and reality and how they intersect.

Recently, at the CPAC conference, Turning Point USA Founder Charlie Cook took to the stage to claim that giving money to America’s institutions of higher education is tantamount to funding “the destruction of Western Civilization.”

Let me say that again, America’s foremost conservative political conference greeted Mr. Cook with applause when he complained that the US government’s funding of higher education represents “THE DESTRUCTION OF WESTERN CIVILIZATION.”

Cook’s argument, as hyperbolic as it is, was that safe spaces, free speech restrictions and a general move toward snowflake appeasement are bad for the country and that federal dollars are supporting Schools’ migration from bastions of free speech to communes of closed-ness.

But, c’mon! Federal support of college campuses as enhancing and speeding the decline of Western Civilization? Really?!!

So, Mr. Cook, let’s start with your group. You claim to have chapters of your hyper-conservative group on more than 300 campuses nationwide and that you generated over $5 million in revenues from them.

Let’s see what happens if the feds cut their funding to your 300 host institutions. Let’s shut the spigot to your poster-child campuses: Michigan’s Hillsdale College and Pennsylvania’s Grove City College.

Let’s see how that works out for the hundreds and hundreds of students who would be affected. And, when they complain, we’ll just point to you and say: well, these are your favorite conservative safe spaces…your save them.