William Katz:  Urgent Agenda

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THERE IS HOPE!  THERE IS HOPE!  Want to read an encouraging "feel good" story?  Here it is. 

Many American colleges and universities are falling apart, turned into Marxist playgrounds by children posing as professors.

Realizing that current institutions are probably beyond repair, a group of scholars and intellectuals have decided to form a new university based on classic standards and practices.  It's called the University of Austin, and it's just getting started, and I like what I see.  From the New York Post:

Fed up with the increasingly woke and intolerant political climate on American campuses, former New York Times columnist Bari Weiss last year announced the launch of The University of Austin, a new four-year college dedicated to “the fearless pursuit of truth.” The college aims to welcome its first class of full-time four-year undergraduates in 2024, and last month, its first summer program, “The Forbidden Courses” series, admitted 80 students from colleges across the US.

“This is an insanely intelligent group of people — a genuinely thoughtful, bold group of kids. And it bodes very, very well for the future of the institution,” University of Austin founding faculty member Peter Boghossian told The Post. A former professor at Portland State who came under fire for publishing hoax papers in woke academic journals, Boghossian taught a course at the University of Austin called “Street Epistemology,” about conversational techniques that help people think more critically about deeply-held beliefs.

During the two, week-long summer sessions, funded entirely by donor contributions and held at a temporary location in Dallas, students attended small, discussion-based seminars, such as “Critical Thinking and Freedom of Expression” taught by feminist and activist Ayaan Hirsi Ali, alongside shorter workshops, like “How to Be Liberal in an Illiberal Age” taught by Weiss.

Eighty students attended the first summer sessions at the University of Austin, taught at a temporary space in Dallas, with the cost entirely covered by donors.

Author Rob Henderson, known for coining the term “luxury beliefs” to describe woke ideology, taught a seminar called “The Psychology of Social Status” and said he was blown away by his politically diverse students who ranged from “proponents of Marxism” to “defenders of monarchy as their favorite political system.” But one thing clearly united all his students: when he asked how many held back their opinions out of fear of social repercussions, he said nine out of ten raised their hands.

“Whenever I spoke with students, they seemed relieved to interact with others in an environment where they didn’t have to fear being ostracized,” Henderson told The Post. “I don’t think they wanted to be in an environment where everyone agreed with them. They really wanted to be free to disagree. I’ve never seen so much intense good-faith discussion in any academic environment before.”

Since launching the school, Weiss has enlisted a powerhouse board of advisors including former New York magazine columnist Andrew Sullivan, former ACLU president Nadine Strossen and economist Glenn Loury as well as big-name trustees like Palantir CEO Joe Lonsdale. The Post talked to three students who attended the summer program about their experiences and asked if the University of Austin should set a new standard for liberal arts education in America.

Hanna Nour: “It was like night and day compared with my previous experiences.”
Hannah Nour came to the University of Austin after being attacked by students at her Florida campus for criticizing Islam.

COMMENT:  Read the whole thing, and send to friends.  Ah yes, there is hope.  And we have students from all backgrounds who want to grab onto that hope.

There will be establishment "educators" who will want to destroy the University of Austin.  They will be joined by party-line "journalists."  We must stand against them and protect this new prize.

July 17, 2022