Equity and Inclusion Office in crisis mode as intellectual diversity falls to new lows

Just kidding, they don’t care about that kind of diversity. The Office of Equity and Inclusion has spent millions encouraging UO to hire faculty who look different but think the same. Apparently they’ve been very effective.

Back in 2006 I matched the list of UO tenure track faculty with the Lane County voter rolls, and was able to find 25 registered Republicans. Daily Emerald reporter Braedon Kwiecien has an analysis out today that suggests UO’s political diversity is, if anything, narrowing:

… Of the 27 faculty members in [Political Science], 14 are registered Democrats, two are registered with the Pacific Green Party, two are unaffiliated, one is independent and one is a registered Republican. Seven couldn’t be identified as being registered to vote in Oregon. At a minimum, over 50 percent of faculty in the department are registered Democrats, and a greater percent register with liberal-leaning parties.

At the law school, political diversity is even more skewed. Of the 44 law faculty, 30 are registered Democrats, meaning at least 68 percent of the law faculty are Democrats. Three are non-affiliated, one is independent, one is a registered Republican and nine couldn’t be accounted for in the registration data. …

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22 Responses to Equity and Inclusion Office in crisis mode as intellectual diversity falls to new lows

  1. honest Uncle Bernie says:

    It is much as I would expect, and it is the same at almost all major universities. The reasons are complicated, and not totally about leftwing bias in academia — but I think that academia suffers intellectually and pedagogically for it. It certainly is hurting academia among a large section of the public, especially as the country becomes more polarized. Both the reputation and finances.

    If I were a Republican among the general public, I would look at that 30-1 D/R ratio in the law school, and I might think hard about whether I wanted any of my money to go there. Ditto for the entire university.

    At least UO hasn’t lately had much of the really egregious events that we read so much about, like Middlebury, Yale, Missouri, Evergreen State …. the list goes on. There have been some events in the past that make me cringe to think about.

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  2. Inquiring Minds says:

    I think what you have shown is that there are many more dems than republicans interested in teaching at University. Political party is a pretty coarse way to assess variety of political views.
    Women versus men within the same political party vary a lot on priorities and political views. As do white versus people of color. Or People from working class background versus trust-babies. Finality I would prefer that you talk about variety of political viewpoints, not “diversity” which has a pretty specific meaning/intention.

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    • To Inquiring Minds says:

      LOL. So is under-representation with respect to race or gender just based on some groups not being “interested in teaching at a University?” No? I’m interested to hear the break down of which types of under-representation can be attributed to a lack of interest and which can be attributed to less innocuous factors.

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  3. Hippo says:

    Meh.

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  4. Anonymous says:

    It’s a little odd to me that the metric is to compare number of Democrats and Republicans, even though both parties have made extreme moves RIGHTWARD in the last 15 years. Today’s Republicans barely resemble the party of Reagan, who would be appalled at their “conservative” rhetoric.

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  5. Grumpy Toad says:

    I’m tired of hearing this intellectual diversity argument over and over in the context of political affiliations. When the leaders of one of the two major political parties are openly distrustful of “experts” in general and scientists in particular, hostile to public education, and uninterested in government funding for the arts, why would anyone expect or want supporters of this party to be well represented at a major university?

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    • to toad says:

      Toad:

      1) You really can’t see a reason why a party that half of the country aligns with should have some representation in public higher education?
      2) Do you think the Republican party’s distrust of experts might have something to do with the fact that Republican’s aren’t represented in the primary group of so-called experts we have in this county (i.e. academics)?
      3) Do you think that only people that support government funding for the arts should be represented in academics?
      4) Do you really want to be surrounded by a bunch of people that think like you, the rest of the country be damned?

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      • just different says:

        There’s no reason to represent “thinking” that isn’t actually thinking. And the segment of the country in question gets more than their share of attention from both academics and the mass media, persecution complexes notwithstanding.

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      • RCO says:

        1) Professors should teach what is true, not what is popular.
        2) No. I think it has to do with Rush Limbaugh telling his listeners that experts are bad. The reason he does this is because experts make it harder for oligarchical interests to lie about the harm that they are causing.
        3) Huh?
        4) See response to 1).

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        • D Dumas Duck says:

          That seems to be a roundabout way of saying “I’m right and everyone who disagrees is wrong.” You’re certainly entitled to that opinion. But don’t expect to change anyone’s mind if you don’t engage. (And don’t expect to be funded by their hard-earned dollars.)

          Many have managed to change my mind away from their positions, simply by their example. Only a very few have drawn me toward their views. The traits they shared were real humility and a kind intent.

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    • uomatters says:

      In 1967, when I was 8, my family moved from Lewisburg Pennsylvania to Charlottesville Virginia and I started 2nd grade at Venable Elementary School. Venable had only recently reopened, since during the segregationist “Massive Resistance” response to Brown v. Topeka, Charlottesville’s school board decided it would rather close its schools than integrate them. The architect of this segregation was Harry Byrd, a Democrat.

      It was not really crushed until 1970 when Linwood Holton was elected Governor. Holton made a point of having his children bused to integrated Richmond public schools. His daughter Anne is married to Tim Kaine, who was Hillary Clinton’s running mate in 2016. Linwood Holton was a Republican.

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      • Hippo says:

        Indeed. Of course it was part of the Southern Strategy since Nixon to peel off the segregationist southern Democrats into the fold of the Republican coalition, since the passage of the Covil Rights Act. Storm Thurman started his career as a Democrat and ended it as a Republican. Yeah, “not many people know Lincoln was a Republican”, so says our brilliant president. It’s all history at this point.

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  6. iamnotlefthanded says:

    In high school, I was involved in an individual sport that was very competitive at the school. I learned a great deal by challenging the upperclassmen, even though I usually lost. Unfortunately, my senior year, they had all graduated, and no one left was good enough to give me even a limited run for my money. I discovered that year that being king of the hill isn’t much fun without someone to sharpen one’s skills against, and I improved no further.

    One of the problems with being taught in an environment lacking diversity is that you get far less practice debating people who think differently. When the day comes, you may not be ready.

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    • just different says:

      The problem with your analogy is that American conservatives have consistently demonstrated that they’re not at all interested in engaging with other points of view. All of the genuine intellectual talent–so not YouTube bozos like Ben Shapiro–seems to be dedicated to clandestine political manipulation, à la Federalist Society and REDMAP.

      Seth Cotlar makes a good case that there never was a good faith intellectual engagement among conservatives. It was always about leveraging bigotry for political power.

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      • iamnotlefthanded says:

        Digging through that pile of tweets (is there a better way to tell your readers that you hate them?), Cotlar’s basic point seems to be that conservatism was never great. As one of the replies notes with incredulity, it seems pretty strange that he teaches a “history of conservatism” course given that he despises conservatism. Would it not make more sense to have the course taught by a conservative historian?

        To your first point, as an example, the conservatives at Heterodox Academy seem talented and engaged.

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        • honest Uncle Bernie says:

          Very good point! That shows why the right of center and even what’s left of the centrist public does not trust the leftist academy.

          There are quite a few conservative intellectuals and statesmen over the years whom I have found very intellectually engaging. There are some today. I sure wish they would occasionally visit UO for a public lecture and maybe workshop type stuff. The last I can remember visiting here was maybe a dozen years ago. I don’t mean liberals who are right of the academic median, I mean real conservatives. You won’t find them very often on mainstream American campuses.

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        • just different says:

          Heterodox Academy kind of proves my point. It’s a PR project whose true purpose is to propagate the narrative that academia is a bastion of leftist intolerance. Advocating for “viewpoint diversity” and bitching about being “marginalized” is easy. Actually engaging with liberals in defense of conservative ideas is hard, because so much of it is indefensible.

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          • To Just Different says:

            Here’s a high school level description of conservative vs liberal view points. Doesn’t seem very cut and dry to me. Can you point me to the conservative view points that are indefensible?

            https://www.studentnewsdaily.com/conservative-vs-liberal-beliefs/

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            • just different says:

              I am happy to listen to arguments about free markets and the role of government, especially if the people making these arguments seriously listen to the other side. I see a lot of listening on the left and precious little on the right (latest example: Ben Shapiro’s piece on Nordic socialism in the National Review). I’m still pretty sure that these conservatives are mostly shilling for the 1%, but I’m willing to listen.

              I am absolutely not willing to listen to racism, sexism, anti-queer bigotry, or climate change denialism dressed up as “personal responsibility” or “traditional values.” But these are overwhelmingly the dominant issues in contemporary conservatism, especially in the rank and file. And none of it is defensible.

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            • you lost me says:

              You lost any ability to stand this up as a credible debate with the phrase “traditional American values” in the defining paragraph of Conservatism. That’s a nonsense phrase used to advance any number of veiled biases.

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          • iamnotlefthanded says:

            If you feel that it’s merely mindless PR, it ought to be pretty easy to rip their essays to shreds. They seem to be asking to be engaged, so I say go for it!

            Along the same lines, the conservatives at Quillette seem like a worthy target.

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  7. When will we ever learn? says:

    He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that. His reasons may be good, and no one may have been able to refute them. But if he is equally unable to refute the reasons on the opposite side, if he does not so much as know what they are, he has no ground for preferring either opinion. Nor is it enough that she should hear the opinions of adversaries from her own teachers, presented as they state them, and accompanied by what they offer as refutations. She must be able to hear them from those who actually believe them. She must know them in their most plausible and persuasive form.’ (On Liberty, 1850). [Gender alternated from original, in the spirit of Mill’s Subjection of Women, 1869].

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