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Academic Teach-In, Not. By: David Gulliver
FrontPageMagazine.com | Monday, November 04, 2002

I have either attended, or had relatives who attended, many different schools across this nation. I have experienced a range of political climates, ranging from the right (The United States Naval Academy), to the self-righteous (Northwestern), to the right-out (Lane Community College of  Eugene, OR). Currently, I am haunting the hallowed halls of Southern Illinois University, an academically excellent but otherwise mostly-ignored university in the transition-zone between the Midwest and the Deep South. We have a very diverse student body: poor inner-city blacks from Chicago and St. Louis, veterans taking advantage of the generous VA grants, spoiled white suburban kids looking for a party, over-achieving students seeking affordable education, and academically inferior students accepted under essentially non-existent admissions standards. In other words: the student body here is a real cross-section of the population.

What makes this significant? It is significant because it isn't Harvard. Much attention has been paid by the conservative movement to the infiltration of our elite schools by the progressive left. Schools like Harvard turn out our future policy-makers. It is essential that we restore conservative voices to such campuses. But we must not overlook the hundreds of lower-tier colleges. Harvard might turn out the next Kennedy or Clinton. But SIU will turn out thousands of ordinary citizens who may vote that next Kennedy or Clinton into high office. And the fifth-column is just as pervasive in the lower-profile state schools as it is in the ivy-clad halls. The students here are exposed to an endless and unopposed slough of extreme left-wing rhetoric, then sent out into the real world to work and vote.

I have witnessed my Constitutional Law professor address an audience concerning the resolutions passed by Congress authorizing the President to utilize force against Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein. His thesis: the un-elected President has strong-armed Congress into unconstitutionally delegating the authority to declare war to the executive branch. This professor teaches Constitutional Law! Our student newspaper consistently runs editorials attacking the President. Student government is voting on a referendum to denounce the war on terror. These students are the voice of the campus! But perhaps the most troubling illustration of the dangerous progressive bias among our SIU literati is a series of anti-American "teach-ins" addressing the issues of life in post 9/11 society. I attended one, because it was a way to earn class credit, and was shocked by the slant-and significance-of the presentation.

In his lesson, entitled "Federal Security Policy Post 9/11/2001: Consequences for Civil Liberties and the Administration of Justice," Professor Thomas Castellano demonstrated just how entrenched the traitors among our intellectual elite really are. During a 45-minute lecture, Castellano taught a captive audience:

1) The United States is a victim of "Dirty Harry syndrome," in which society glorifies vigilante justice at the expense of individual rights. This is evident not only with security policy, but with the trends in entertainment turning Clint Eastwood, Sylvester Stallone, and Arnold Scwarzeneggar into idols.

2) President Bush, who was not elected but appointed, has fallen under the spell of "Dirty Harry syndrome," causing him to implement "cowboy justice" in the war on terror.

3) The Bush-Ashcroft regime, in implementing the Patriot Act, is more concerned with seizing power and suppressing civil liberties than securing the nation against terror.

4) Section 802 of the Patriot Act, which gives the administration power to investigate and prosecute people performing acts of civil disobedience, was written solely with the intent to silence political opponents of the Republican party and allow FBI and CIA infiltration into rival political organizations.

5) The Patriot Act will also put an end to 4th Amendment protections against search and seizure.

6) The prisoners held in Guantanamo Bay are proof of the administration's disregard for Constitutional rights; the possibility of military tribunals are an affront to due process of law.

7) The many immigrants who have been detained or deported under stricter immigration controls have been robbed of their rights. This is illustrated by thousands of examples of immigrants rounded up and imprisoned without the ability to contact relatives or retain legal counsel.

8) The proposed Department of Homeland Security will do nothing to improve our safety, but is designed to give the President more power over organized labor.

9) The reason our country was attacked on 9/11 was not poor security, but our imperialist-attitude which drove the attackers to such a desperate measure.

It is important to note that Professor Castellano teaches administration of justice. That means he is, in theory at least, preparing the youth of our nation for careers as police officers and FBI agents. But he is doing it by filling their heads with anti-American ideas that tear down our justice system, fostering a climate where terrorists are free to invade, attack, and destroy the United States. And most significantly, he is launching his attack on America in a forum supported and endorsed by the SIU College of Liberal Arts.

Upon the conclusion of his presentation, Castellano entertained questions for the audience, a group of about 100 students and faculty. Any questions that criticized his ideas were quickly dismissed or discredited, allowing him to easily move on to more supportive queries. Students came to a presentation that was billed as "information and perspectives about US domestic and international actions that are critical to our ability to be responsible citizens" and promised "everyone is welcome to share different points of view on the discussion during the question-and-answer period."

What students received was a one-sided rhetorical presentation of anti-American propaganda. The only "different points of view" allowed differed only in their sheer level of hatred and contempt for the President. The left-wing bias, long inherent in our elite universities, permeates the entire academic system. Conservatives need to fight not only the likes of Harvard, Princeton, and Yale, but also the SIU's, the Oregon State's, and the community colleges. The America-hating fifth-column of our academic environment is shaping not only our future leaders, but the rank-and-file citizens who make our country work. And it's getting worse every day.

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