Protests Have Consequences
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When the other side gets something they want politically they often gleefully remind everyone else that elections have consequences. It would be good for them to remember that protests have consequences too.
Yesterday was the Million Student March where collegians across the country marched in solidarity with their brethren at MU. Seeing the success of Jonathan Butler and other members of Concerned Student 1950, they too have developed a list of demands. Top on that list is the Marxist belief that education is a right and therefore college should be free for all. They cite countries like Germany and Sweden as proof that it can be done, if the government and the wealthy care enough to recognize students’ rights.
In fact, the consequences of the student demands will most likely result in the opposite of free tuition. Expect a tuition hike in the near future, and here is why.
Demand – that by the academic year 2017-2018, the University of Missouri increases the percentage of black faculty and staff campus-wide to 10%.
Jack Cashill, author and regular contributor to The American Thinker, shared the dirty little secret about minority hiring on college campuses. “Today, blacks are the first hired and last fired, and they get paid more for the same work. Nothing unique here – this situation prevails at essentially every major university in America and most of the minor ones.” Simple economics of supply and demand are at work here. The supply of black faculty nationally is limited which enables them to negotiate for higher pay to fill quotas even though they may not have the credentials of better non-black teachers. If every campus across the country is going to demand equally high random percentages of black faculty, their negotiating status improves dramatically driving up the cost of academic staff at the university without necessarily improving the quality of education.
Demand – that the University of Missouri increases funding, resources, and personnel for the social justices centers on campus for the purpose of hiring additional professionals, particularly those of color, boosting outreach and programming across campus, and increasing campus-wide awareness and visibility.
In order to increase funding for this, or any other demands, the university is going to have to either get more money from the state or increase tuition. They are notoriously bad at cutting spending to find funding. There are too many in our state and other states who see MU’s caving to protester’s unsubstantiated claims, with no due process, as a sign that they have terrible management. Many are calling on the legislature to actually decrease funding to the university system to incentivize them to more appropriate responses to expected future student demands. Members of the legislature have shown interest in such action. That leaves a tuition hike as a great possibility.
Demand – that the University of Missouri composes a strategic 10 year plan by May 1, 2016 that will increase retention rates for marginalized students, sustain diversity curriculum and training, and promote a more safe and inclusive campus.
As a first step in acquiescing to this demand, the Board of Curators has selected Mike Middleton to be interim President, replacing Tom Wolfe. Middleton was a founder of the Legion of Black Collegians, which was involved in one of the incidents that protestors cited as an example of the racism at MU. Cashill had this to say about LBC. “The progressive phase begins unannounced in 1968, when the LBC is founded to give ‘black students a voice.’ Progress going forward only re-segregates the campus. The administration pretends not to notice.”
Mizzou’s LBC is the only Black Student Union in the country. They were holding their Royalty Court rehearsal when an intoxicated white student came in and hurled racial slurs at them. It can’t be missed that for all the talk of healing a racial divide, the group that was founded by the new interim President keeps itself separate by having its own student union and its own homecoming. Any time you have duplication of effort you have duplication of cost.
Middleton’s conviction that there are race problems on campus is illustrated in his comment to WAV3 “I suspect that my color will be met with much criticism from parts of our community.” It is hard to see how someone who views the world through this lens is going to heal that racial divide any time soon which does not lead to peace on campus which will continue to hurt the university’s reputation and bottom line.
When Middleton was interim vice provost for minority affairs and faculty development, he was credited with turning women’s studies and black studies programs into their own departments. The value of these degrees is questionable, especially women’s studies which makes most everyone’s list of useless degrees. There are many other SJW topics out there just waiting for someone to start a degree program in them. Attracting and retaining more students like the protestors who are drawn to these topics will lead to more students who need the retention services the protesters are so worried about and more counseling for such sensitive students, which the protesters also demanded. These things add cost. Then there is the problem of workforce data that will add to the university’s woes when they pump out more people with useless majors who can’t find jobs.
The greatest irony of this demand is that they seek a safer campus. Concerned Student 1950 didn’t really have their demands taken seriously until the MU football team threatened to boycott a game. That football team has the dubious distinction of being second in the SEC for sexual assault charges, according to ESPN’s Outside the Lines, which should hardly qualify them for demanding a safer campus. Acquiescing to this demand should result in the dismissal of a number of Tiger players which will cost the athletic department dearly for recruitment, training of new team members and ticket sales as alumni don’t like to come watch a losing team. The school is already suffering as their lackluster season, combined with the controversy, means they can hardly give tickets to the games away.
This leads to the last reason that the protests will likely result in a tuition hike. The alumni are not happy with what is happening at their alma mater. There has been much talk, and some of it quite serious, that their donations will dry up until the university gets its act together and stops letting the children be in charge. In the big picture, this talk is better than what some other people are talking about, which is letting the universities crumble under their own liberal policies which are retaining poor teachers and losing really good ones, creating campuses with constant threat of violence, and soon pricing themselves beyond reach of most. Alas, protests have consequences.
Students who want a free college education should remember that the countries that do offer it, do not offer the kind of college experience American students are used to. Germany does offer free college to everyone, but they have a lower percentage of students go on to college than we do here. Also, students at major U.S. public and private universities tend to have more flexibility, more student services, and a far more expansive array of campus activities. If students need a comparison, think of the free Obama phone. Its not a Galaxy or an iPhone. It looks more like this. That is more like what you will get for a free college experience.
Sweden does offer free tuition but that does not mean college is without expenses. Swedish students received help from their government to cover fees and living expenses, approximately $3.5 billion U.S., which was paid out in government loans which students are expected to repay.
The sad reality for students at American colleges is that there really is no such thing as a free ride. They should watch their imperious leader Keely Mullen get pwned in the most elegant manner possible by Neil Cavuto in this video which will no doubt go down in history as the shot heard round the world in the war on socialism.