But more interesting to me are the surprising consequences of the ideological bias of our universities. The bias has done a great deal to help staff the think tanks of the Right. Sinecures of academia unavailable, a conservative intellectual is practically forced to find a public voice. The same holds for students. A liberal student is on ideological welfare. The entire university is set up to support his or her causes. The conservatively-minded students must be entrepreneurial. If they don’t start their own organizations, then their positions go unheard.
Thus the law of unintended consequences. It seems rather obvious to me that the vibrant organizational and intellectual potency of contemporary conservatism is largely due to the transparent and relentless Leftism of the academy. Deny a podium to smart, motivated folks who hold positions consistently preferred by more than 50% of American voters, and they will find other outlets. And furthermore, removed from the relative insularity and softening wealth of the contemporary university, those same conservative intellectuals will need to be nimble, articulate, and energetic in order to survive.
It does seem to me that students of a left leaning persuasion are increasingly unable to articulate their positions well. That may be precisely because they are so unchallenged in the university environment. I would no longer dare to forcefully take on a leftist student's predisposed notions because they lack the tools to defend themselves and I would just come across as a bully. I fall back on my ability to cajole even though I realize that that comes across as a lack of seriousness. My hope is I can get to know some students well enough that I can be more forthright and direct with them.
It's quite sad when you think about it. As a result I try not to.