Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Expanding Intolerance, Shrinking Freedom, Collapsing Public Education

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I had heard about it, but had not seen the video.

An event at University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, is a microcosm of a much greater epidemic that is choking the American culture.

I received an email from President Obama's team this morning, reminding me that today is his 100th day in office. I had heard that it was, but I appreciated the personal reminder. Before a very long list of accomplishments already booked on the resume, I noticed five words that spoke loudly.

Focus on the Family has published an analysis of what the President has done to undermine pro-life and pro-family policies in his first 100 days. I have linked it.

Newt Gingrich has written an excellent article this morning on the president's first hundred days, which I also have linked. Both are very informative. I recommend both.

However, the words I picked up from the Obama email was, "With the country in crises..."

There is a crises. We are expanding intolerance and shrinking our freedoms, while public education collapses.

Let me use the video from UNC, Chapel Hill, to make the point.

Former Congressman, Tom Tancredo, was invited by a student organization to speak on the subject of instate tuition for illegals, which is an issue at UNC.

Protesters stormed the one-hour lecture, took over the podium and eventually the police were forced to shut down the lecture.

Those who dissented, would not allow anyone to hear a one-hour lecture on something with which they disagreed.

It gets worse.

Now, immigration is a very important and emotional issue. But there are many important and emotional issues.

Here's the problem.

You will notice when you watch the video the assault on the event was not primarily a disagreement on the issue. It was an assault on the students right to hear something those who were protesting did not want them to hear.

The prophets of tolerance are becoming the most intolerant among us. They have inverted and perverted the concept of tolerance, making what was once a Christian virtue, a bludgeon for control.

Tolerance no longer involves "putting up with" or "enduring" those beliefs and views with which you may disagree. Tolerance has now become the measure of affirmation. When certain beliefs or actions are not affirmed and embraced, you are then said to be "intolerant" and therefore deserve what you get---whatever that may be.

You will note from the video, that in this case, the assault was agitated and encouraged by professors.

These are the same, most often tenured, professors who are teaching and shaping what your children will believe. And their lesson is about much more than immigration. It is about undermining the very freedoms that have given them their place in the classroom and given all of us the most blessed nation in the history of the world.

These are the professors who lecture kids every day across this country with anti-Christian, anti-American, philosophy and when challenged, run behind their "freedom of speech" rights and declare open minded discussion is part of the educational process, while they are the worst among us to violate that very right.

Abraham Lincoln once said that the philosophy of today's classroom is the philosophy of tomorrow's government.

The University did finally issue an apology of sorts, after this became public, part of which said, "We pride ourselves as being a place where all points of view can be expressed and heard."


If this happens in public, imagine what happens in the classroom with the door closed.

Tolerance has become a tool of intimidation. Students have told me for years that they have been punished if they spoke out on their beliefs in the classroom and the professor did not agree. Particularly issues of faith and culture.

This kind of intolerance comes mostly from the left---not from the right. A week before this event, John Kerry had spoken in a similar forum taking a position many conservative kids did not share. There was no disruption. And certainly no assault on his speech.

If you are a student in a classroom and do not embrace the extreme left, you are tagged as intolerant by those who practice intolerance.

If you are a young woman competing in the Miss USA contest and do not hold the politically correct view on how marriage should be defined, you are publicly mocked, humiliated and possibly denied what many felt you had already won.

The fountain head of expanding intolerance and shrinking freedoms is the collapsing public education system. As it collapses, it is taking down with it some of the most important virtues of our society.

Yes, Mr. President, our country is indeed in crises.

Be wise. Be prayerful. Be vigilant. Be active.

Gary Randall
Faith & Freedom

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