Tucker Carlson: Philosopher, Educational Reformer

In an update to the story of the notorious liberalism of American colleges, Fox News has apparently discovered the Intercollegiate Studies Institute study proving that 1) college-educated Americans are liberal and, 2) college-educated Americans don’t know basic American civics.

Gawker’s Richard Lawson posted a segment from Fox News in which conservative commentator Tucker Carlson “interprets” the study of politics on the American college campus. According to Carlson, the solution is:

Diversity. Real diversity of opinion. Diversity of ideology. I mean, having professors who have a different perspective. I mean, who aren’t conventional lifestyle liberals. That’s fine. But they could throw a moderate professor in there, too. Colleges spend a huge amount of time and an enormous amount of money to diversify the pool of applicants to the college but very little on the actual diversity. What’s different is the goal. Maybe getting people who think differently should be a goal.

Yes, maybe. While the radical liberalism of the American professoriate is actually somewhat overstated—social science and humanities academics lean liberal, faculty in engineering and the computer and physical sciences tend to be fairly moderate—what’s particularly odd about the Carlson recommendation is its focus.

Here’s a thought: maybe it’s not the liberalism that’s the problem. Maybe it’s the ignorance about civics that colleges should address.

Daniel Luzer

Daniel Luzer is the news editor at Governing Magazine and former web editor of the Washington Monthly. Find him on Twitter: @Daniel_Luzer