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Majoring in discrimination.



Parents sending queer children off to college for the first time, beware: Your child's education could be guided by the agenda of the Christian right. Far-right activists are working to reshape the academic landscape of colleges and universities from a democratizing force in our society into a tool of conservative indoctrination--to give religious Republican political influences sway in classrooms and on campuses.

Comprising several student-focused organizations such as Young America's Foundation, Accuracy in Academia Accuracy in Academia (AIA) is a non-profit organization that seeks to combat liberal/leftist bias on campus, which it characterizes as liberal or communist "indoctrination", and to standup for the rights of conservative students. It is run by executive director Daniel J. , and the Institute for Educational Affairs, the college conservative movement recruits and grooms campus activists. Their goal? To twist higher education into a machine to create a far-right intelligentsia--future leaders who will influence, if not control, public policy debates.

These activists blame the current crisis in education on the erosion of so-called traditional education in favor of giving unmerited advantage to underrepresented un·der·rep·re·sent·ed  
adj.
Insufficiently or inadequately represented: the underrepresented minority groups, ignored by the government. 
 groups--including queers. This far-right college movement's influence is already strong and has begun to affect LGBT LGBT Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender  students' social organizations, support services support services Psychology Non-health care-related ancillary services–eg, transportation, financial aid, support groups, homemaker services, respite services, and other services , courses, admissions, and even the employment of queer staff and faculty.

One stated mission--already successful on some campuses--is to defund de·fund  
tr.v. de·fund·ed, de·fund·ing, de·funds
To stop the flow of funds to: "Some days, they wake up with a burning desire to defund the Public Broadcasting System and the National Endowment for the
 gay organizations. Student fees, they argue, should not be used to support groups with which some students ideologically disagree.

Activists on scattered campuses nationwide have a unified communication strategy funded and crafted by the rightwing Collegiate Network, which operates or supports more than 80 student publications. Its antigay rhetoric reaches over 2.5 million students a year.

Meanwhile the National Association of Scholars, a conservative network of college educators, has received millions of dollars to squelch squelch  
v. squelched, squelch·ing, squelch·es

v.tr.
1. To crush by or as if by trampling; squash.

2.
 liberalism on college campuses. Its attacks on queer studies have been vociferous and unrelenting, distorting the validity of the field's research and questioning the academic credibility of openly queer instructors. The group defines queer studies not as an academic discipline but as a politicized, identity-focused movement legitimizing LGBT people's sexual promiscuity.

Discrimination against queer students on college and university campuses by forces supported by the Bush administration is nothing new. The Solomon Amendment The Solomon Amendment, 50 U.S.C.A. App. § 462(f), is federal legislation that denies male college students between the ages of 18 and 26 who fail to register for the military draft (under the Selective Service Act, 50 U.S.C.A. App. § 451 et seq.  already strips federal funding from schools that bar discriminatory military recruiters. Now that quest to legitimize anti-gay discrimination is also putting at risk scholarship by and about queer Americans.

This academic censorship is antithetical to a well-rounded education, which is a marketplace of ideas This article is about the concept. For the public radio show and podcast, see The Marketplace of Ideas (radio program).

The "marketplace of ideas" is a rationale for freedom of expression based on an analogy to the economic concept of a free market.
, not judgments, that makes all our children--straight and queer--better professionals, better neighbors, better human beings. That bettor world is now under siege at a campus near you.
COPYRIGHT 2006 Liberation Publications, Inc.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2006, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Title Annotation:FAITH MATTERS
Author:Monroe, Irene
Publication:The Advocate (The national gay & lesbian newsmagazine)
Date:Nov 7, 2006
Words:397
Previous Article:Overstated.
Next Article:Opinions.



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