WaPo Dismisses 'Myth' of Left-Wing University Bias

"No college professor taught him that."

Sunday’s front page of The Washington Post featured a dressing-down of conservatives for believing that the university environment in the U.S. has been railroaded by the political left. 

In a story written by husband-and-wife team Kevin Sullivan and Mary Jordan, the Post waxed philosophic on “Elitists, Crybabies and Junky Degrees: a Trump Supporter Explains Rising Conservative Anger at American Universities.”

The story began with the profile of former Arizona senator Frank Antenori, first describing how he “shot the head off a rattlesnake at his back door last summer.” Sullivan and Jordan called Antenori’s shot “a deadeye pistol blast from 20 feet. No college professor taught him that.” In other words, he’s a redneck wild man, not university material. Furthermore, the journalists seemed to shrug off Antenori’s ideas about leftist infiltration of higher education as propaganda he read on websites such as Campus Reform:

“The Antenoris did not steer their two sons, 23 and 22, toward college, and neither went. One helps at home on the ranch, and the other is enlisted in the Army... Antenori is just as happy his sons aren’t hanging out with the ‘weirdos’ he reads about on Campus Reform, a conservative website with a network of college reporters whose stated mission is to expose ‘liberal bias and abuse on America’s campuses.’”

Could they be any more dismissive? Sullivan and Jordan did admit that a Pew Research poll determined that only 36 percent of Republicans believe “colleges and universities have a positive effect on the way things are going in the country.” However, they also pointed out that the number had dropped 18 points since 2015. That is to say, the drop was supposedly merely a partisan shift in attitude led by President Trump.

Expounding upon Campus Reform's reporting, the writers noted:

“In a sign of the intensely partisan climate on campus, its recent headlines include: 'Prof wants "body size" added to diversity curricula,' 'Students cover free speech wall with vulgar anti-Trump graffiti' and 'College Dems leader resigns after declaring hatred of white men.' ”

Moreover, the Post's headline on page A-8 -- “What is Wrong with Colleges in America, as Many on the Right See It” -- preceded a column comprised mostly of rebuttal, in which Arizona Democratic Congressman Steve Farley said,

“The views of many conservatives are being fanned by Trump, he said, including a vilification of universities that is ‘corrosive to our democracy and our society in general…The whole liberal bastion idea is just absurd,’ Farley said, noting the growing amount of money on campuses from conservative donors.” 

Therefore, the notion of liberal bias on campus is nonsense, say Sullivan and Jordan. They are, of course, wrong — in fact, a 2016 article in the Post by Christopher Ingraham revealed:

“In 1990, according to survey data by the Higher Education Research Institute (HERI) at UCLA, 42 percent of professors identified as ‘liberal’ or ‘far-left.' By 2014, that number had jumped to 60 percent. Over the same period, the number of academics identifying as ‘moderate' fell by 13 percentage points, and the share of ‘conservative’ and ‘far-right’ professors dropped nearly six points. In the academy, liberals now outnumber conservatives by roughly 5 to 1.”

Signs of liberal bias on America's college campuses are obvious and frequent, from professors' endorsement of Antifa to college classes castigating Republicans, to courses in anti-Americanism. For those calling themselves journalists to deny this requires more than just ignorance; it calls for outright dishonesty. But that's the norm for the leftist media. And on Sunday, it wasn't beneath The Washington Post.