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Academia Versus Civilization

The antisemitism of campus leftism may be incidental. The barbarism is the point.

· 16 min read
Academia Versus Civilization

Not one week after the October 7 massacres, as America’s most prestigious institutions revealed themselves to be thoroughly embedded with pro-Hamas revolutionaries, we wrote: “Campus administrators should consider making significant changes before the American people realize what they are condoning.” Unfortunately, those administrators didn’t get the message.

On December 5, in what must surely rank among the most shameful moments in the history of academia, the presidents of MIT, Harvard, and Penn testified before a Congressional committee at a hearing about the surge of antisemitism on their campuses and refused to say that calls for the genocide of Jews would violate institutional policies. They opted instead for consultant-style newspeak, a whiplash-inducing rediscovery of the value of free expression, and contemptuous smirks. Their tone and coordination indicated that they stood not just for themselves but for the academy—a rarefied, insular, self-important world of its own—and they jolted Americans from their state of benign neglect towards our universities. In doing so, they revealed the acute need for a wholesale renovation of American universities to restore them as institutions that serve a socially useful function. We have subsidized and excused universities’ descent into factories of anti-social people and ideas. A band-aid will not suffice.

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