College campuses – diversity safe zones … or 'really bad SNL comedy skit'?

College campuses – diversity safe zones … or 'really bad SNL comedy skit'?

College campuses – diversity safe zones … or 'really bad SNL comedy skit'?

College campuses that tend to proclaim themselves as "safe zones" for diversity and speech are showing themselves to be anything but that during this wave of protests across the country, says a leading public policy expert.

Jewish students report feeling threatened and unsafe, and college presidents have done little to make things right. Two Columbia students called out their administration this week for a lack of campus security.

The scenes have played out across the country and led this week to the U.S. House passing the Anti-Semitism Awareness Act (H.R.6090), a move that would give more legal authority to the Department of Education to enforce Title VI violations of the Civil Rights Act.

Gary Bauer was an undersecretary in the Department of Education under President Ronald Reagan. During an interview on American Family Radio Friday, he argued that diversity on these campuses is selective – and pointed out that Jewish students are not embraced.

Bauer, Gary (American Values) Bauer

"No, it's almost like a really bad Saturday Night Live comedy skit," he said. "The only diversity on these university campuses may be racial diversity or a sexual orientation diversity or ethnic diversity, but they're all left-wingers."

Bauer told show host Fred Jackson that many college professors are not only Leftists but are proud to exclude other political thought. "There are more self-identified Marxist professors on the faculties of our biggest and most well-known universities than there are self-identified conservative professors," he elaborated.

The irony of opposing political viewpoints at the universities is that many of these professors teach at schools in red states surrounded by citizens and lawmakers of a conservative slant. Yet these schools are continually funded – and according to Bauer, that's because red state legislatures and governors have been weak leaders on the issue.

The violent anti-Israel rioters that took over university and college campuses are being compared to the “Hitler Youth” of Nazi-led Germany, but that historical reference is not the only one.

Levin, Mark Levin

On a Fox News segment this week, “Life, Liberty, and Levin” host Mark Levin compared the “brainwashed” students to Adolf Hitler’s devoted young admirers. There is not much difference, he said, because today’s students have been taught by the university system to hate Jews and to oppose Israel’s existence as a nation.

“These are violent people,” Levin warned, “who are out there with swastikas, who are out there talking about the extermination of the Jews – they need to be sent back to the camps."

Levin made his comments on the “Fox and Friends” program while a live feed showed Los Angeles police officers hauling away zip-tied protesters on the UCLA campus.

The campus protesters are also being compared to the violent “Red Guards” in Mao-led China. In 1966, those middle-class youths were encouraged by the Communist leader to attack and kill their own school teachers and principals in what became known as “Red August.” At least 10,000 people were massacred over several weeks.

Clearly, he said, those in leadership have stepped lightly around the issue of Marxism on their campuses.

"When the Left was taking over even state universities in red states, all too often, conservative-controlled state legislatures and governors did not have the courage to take it on," he explained. "They didn't want to be seen as being critical of the 'University of such-and-such' which might be a matter of pride in a particular state."

Some of that weakness, he suggested, has to do with registered voters dressing in school colors and joining crowds often in excess of 100,000 in college football stadiums. "[Elected leaders] didn't want to alienate business communities. They didn't want to get the president of the university criticizing them," Bauer added.

"The result is they have presided over these important institutions that now don't do anything but produce new, committed, left-wing Democrats every year."

Students coming back changed

In other words, according to Bauer, young adults who were raised to believe in conservative values are going off to college and coming back with a different mindset – while parents and taxpayers foot the bill.

"You send your kid off to college and nine times out of ten, if they change, it's that they've moved completely [to the] left. They come back home, and they've been taught to despise everything that you taught them to believe in," Bauer emphasized.

Now, lawmakers at the federal and state levels are trying to reign in universities who deny freedom of thought to a certain class while protecting the First Amendment right to free speech – and protecting their students.

Lawler, Rep. Michael Lawler

Rep. Mike Lawler (R-New York), the lead sponsor of the Anti-Semitism Awareness Act, said on Washington Watch Thursday that debate is important – it's what lawmakers want to see – but not at the cost of security.

And it's been this way for decades, Lawler explained, citing Father Theodore Hesburgh's heavy-handed approach to protests when he led the University of Notre Dame for 35 years. The congressman shared that in 1969, Hesburgh – as the president of Notre Dame – issued a letter to faculty and students that, in essence, said:

'Look, you have the right to protest. You have the right to offer your opinion. You have the right to object to decisions by the government. But the moment those protests turn violent, or that there are threats of violence, you lose that right, and you'll have 15 minutes by which to disperse and cease and desist; and if you don't, we will verify that you have an I.D. If you have an I.D. you'll be suspended. If you don't, you'll be arrested. If you stay further, you'll be expelled and arrested.'

"The objective here," Lawler concluded, "is to get back some sanity and control on these college campuses. We want robust public debate. People should be free to voice their opinions [or] their objections to decisions made by the government."

Dr. Jennifer Bauwens, the Family Research Council's director of The Center for Family Studies, told Washington Watch host Tony Perkins the campus protests are rooted in society's disregard for Christianity through the years.

"The Marxist kind of content that we've been dealing with has really filled the vacuum of a spiritual void. In the academy, Christianity has kind of fallen by the wayside," she said.

Christians should 'run into the fire,' Bauwens says

Bauwens, Dr. Jennifer (FRC) Bauwens

Still, Bauwens sympathizes with the protesters. She sees students having come from broken homes and disadvantaged backgrounds who seek something to fill their own void of guidance and leadership in a complex time in their lives. These students have become sponges for professors with Marxist leanings, Bauwens said.

The professors are "shepherding young vulnerable minds to think a certain way, and they're all the more vulnerable because of all of the emotional baggage that they're walking in," Bauwens said.

Christians need not be revolted by the students but should "run into the fire. The harvest is ripe. We have a real opportunity with this generation to see many come to the Lord," she said.