Mary Grabar

An Obama presidency would signal the final salvo by the Left in the culture wars. Obama’s advance troops have already taken over our college campuses, have bound and gagged our conservative professors, have ravished our virgins, have pillaged our stores of wisdom, and have ensconced themselves in the thrones of power in deans’, presidents’ and department heads’ offices.

The victory cry is heard across the land in the cheers of Obama’s constituency on college campuses.

This has been going on under the very noses of the Republicans.

Claes G. Ryn, in the Fall 2007 50th anniversary issue of Modern Age, accurately attributes the decline of intellectual conservatism to an abandonment of tradition, philosophical foundations, and artistic expressions, for a focus on political pragmatism, manifested in a fondness for economics and business. Professor Ryn writes, “in trying to effect a renewal of American and Western society, winning and exercising political power cannot take the place of the patient and demanding intellectual and artistic efforts that, in time, might change the mind and the imagination of a people.”

I would add that we may be bearing the fruits of this short-sightedness this coming fall. Obama has a slight lead in the polls against McCain--and a huge lead on college campuses.

Even for the well-being of the business world we need to refocus on the humanities. As Ryn points out, the “honesty, good manners, and social responsibility” of Western businessmen is formed by “an ancient civilization.” But the increasingly popular business school major offers little in terms of appreciation for the hallmarks of our Western civilization.

For decades, teachers have been inculcating an alternative tradition and belief system. The beliefs may be based on such amorphous and sophistical ideas as “social justice,” “tolerance,” and “multiculturalism,” the traditions may lead back to the communist ideology of the nineteenth century and then through the heyday of radicalism in the sixties, but the means for inculcation are entrenched.

The conservative traditions and beliefs, in contrast, are rarely to be found in college syllabi and high school textbooks. Obama connects with audiences because they have been primed for him and his message. Obama, with his scantly resume, is an affirmative action candidate. But his record as a “community organizer” places him at an advantage with those who believe in “social activism” in the classroom.

Mary Grabar

Mary Grabar earned her Ph.D. in English from the University of Georgia and teaches in Atlanta. She is organizing the Resistance to the Re-Education of America at Her writing can be found at