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OPINION

Bolsheviks on the Brazos

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Townhall.com.
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AP Photo/Waco Tribune Herald, Rod Aydelotte

My friend and colleague Dennis Prager often warns his national radio audience, “Everything the Left touches it destroys.” There is no clearer evidence of Prager’s wisdom than the Bolshevik gulag now being constructed on the former site of one of America’s most respected institutions of higher learning located on the Brazos River in Waco, Texas: Baylor University.

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Prager, of course, is probably the wrong guy to cite since he actually built a thriving, intellectually-honest, albeit online university (www.PragerU.com). Meanwhile, someone named Linda Livingstone, PhD, is currently presiding over the intellectual destruction of one chartered in 1845. Livingstone, Baylor’s 15th president, is billed in her official bio as “a strong voice for the role of faith based institutions in American education.” Which—call me crazy—seems at odds with a racially-divisive Baylor video she just posted titled, A Conversation on Race, Peacemaking and Conciliation.

In the video, Livingstone recounts how “At Baylor, we value our faculty, staff, students and friends of color. Black lives absolutely matter at Baylor.” So far, so good. But then she and selected faculty members careen wildly off course…delivering over an hour of parroting what the left has been shoving down our throats over these exhausting past few weeks.

Joining the video discussion are three Baylor professors: 

  • Dr. Mia Moody-Ramirez, the chair of Baylor’s Journalism Department who declares that Black Lives Matter and the Arab Spring are “popular movements” that illustrate how citizens can mobilize and unite on social media platforms. She then states her hope that social media will continue to be instrumental where “everyday citizens can mobilize and organize large groups for protests, whether they are peaceful or violent.” Sounds almost like an Antifa recruitment ad.
  • Dr. Greg Garrett, a professor of English “with expertise in entertainment, pop culture and race” -- and apparently skills as a psychic, as well. Dr. Garrett recounts an experience he had with a black father from his daughter’s school in his “mostly white upper-middle-class neighborhood.” Dr. Garrett reveals that only 30 seconds into his interaction with the father, “I realized that everything he said to me and everything about his posture was intended to communicate to me that he was not a threat.” Gee, thanks, Kreskin…that must’ve been a heck of a 30-second epiphany. (Not to be outdone, Dr. Moody-Ramirez circled back to say that racism “was why the man felt intimidated because of how people approached him previously and stereotyped him as a black man.” She divined this after never even laying eyes on the guy. And she’s chair of the Journalism Department!)
  • Malcolm Foley, a doctoral candidate in Religion who also holds the new title of “Senior Advisor to the Baylor President for Equity and Campus Engagement.” Foley says his "research is specifically on lynching in the late 19th and early 20th Century.” But here in the 21st Century, Mr. Foley calls the shooting of Ahmaud Arbery in Atlanta a lynching and what happened to George Floyd in Minneapolis a lynching. That approach seems to devalue both the English language definition and the horrors of actual lynchings.  
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Over the course of this digital conversation, viewers are subjected to politically-correct claptrap such as Dr. Garrett’s outrageous assertion that “White people swim in this ocean of whiteness where they don’t have to think about who they are or acknowledge the benefits they’ve gained from that experience.” And Dr. Moody-Ramirez’s myopic view that the vote by the Minneapolis city council to actually dissolve the city’s police force represents (her words) “more progress.” And Mr. Foley bats cleanup, declaring that “racialized whiteness”—another term straight out of George Orwell—has led Caucasians to wallow in what he calls Strategic Ignorance: “There are some things that people don’t know because it is in their best interest not to know it,” so Whites need to “self-interrogate” why they feel superior to other races. You get the idea. 

Like an outtake from the Blu-Ray director’s cut of “One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest,” this collection of biased and ill-informed professors collectively nod their heads at the goofy concept of needing to “re-narrate history.” Spoiler Alert: history is history, not what academicians reimagine.

The dialogue among these three “educators”—punctuated with periodic gushings by Linda Livingstone, PhD, of how valuable and insightful each of their utterances is—actually subtracts from the sum total of human knowledge. It also angers Baylor graduates like my wife and a number of my friends who can’t fathom that their alma mater has fallen so far from its original Christian roots. Baylor now charges parents the usurious sum of $62,000 a year to have this kind of drivel brainwashing unsuspecting students, who then return home to “school” their nearly-bankrupt parents on how racist they are and how they must atone for their so-called white privilege. But only after paying the balance to the Bursar’s Office. 

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This feeble video “dialogue” presented by Baylor’s president does precisely zero to bring the races together in America. Maybe it makes the self-congratulating participants feel hip or woke. But how does it further any trajectory in a positive direction: Does it make fathers more responsible? Are inner-city schools stronger? Are fewer people on welfare? And how does anyone posting “black squares” on Instagram change the life of even one human being in our nation? Why not just collectively agree that hatred, violence, and other sins against humanity are bad for all of us and stop stereotyping anyone?

Back in October 2017, in her inaugural message as Baylor’s 15th president, Linda Livingstone, PhD, stated: “The calling before us is challenging, yet significant. We must be bold in our aspirations. Because the world needs a place like Baylor.”

In 2020, the world still needs a place like Baylor. But the real Baylor, not this spineless, watered-down version led by faculty and administrators who have clearly abandoned the high standards and Biblical foundation set forth by ordained Baptist minister Robert Emmett Bledsoe Baylor in 1845. Scripture does not recognize or accept demonizing anyone by skin color. Just the opposite: it states clearly that when God created mankind, he made them in the likeness of Godall of them…all of us!

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Tom Tradup is vice president of news and talk programming at the Salem Radio Network. He can be reached at ttradup@srnradio.com

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