Thursday, September 20, 2007

Apathy on Campus

Continuing this theme of inaction by recent generations, I would like to illustrate some examples going on at the campus I attend right now. Most of these policies do not affect me, but the ones just entering college. No one protests however:

1. Playboy magazines banned for sale on campus.

Sales were banned based on the preferences of a few, and not the student body on a whole. There will always be a minority that objects to anything, but banning something like this on a college campus, an inherently liberal institution, strikes me as strange. Sales have not been re-instituted because no one has said anything. Never mind the simple reason of the first amendment.
2. ...But crazy preachers are given free reign
What is even more disturbing is that a nomadic preacher, Brother Micah, was given free reign in the name of free speech, even though he was downright offensive. There was a ton of student protest but nothing happened, which actually I believe was for the best. Freedom of speech was protected. People are protesting the wrong things. For reference, here is a good synopsis of this guy from (no this is not exaggerated):

"Micah Armstrong, also known as Brother Micah, is a nomadic preacher who graced the University of Old Mississippi with his presence last week. He's a friendly bloke who yells at students walking to class, tells them they're going to hell, makes everyone feel bad about themselves and has probably never had any friends his entire life.

Micah Armstrong comes from Miami (City Motto: "Crazy people. Drugs, too.") and has been traveling across the United States judging people and making babies cry.

Brother Micah carefully outlined that most people in this world do not get to go to heaven. Some of those who don't are as follows:
•Mother Teresa
•People in sororities
•People in fraternities
•Independents, obviously"

3. Students are now required to an 8 hour!! alcohol safety examination before they are allowed to register for classes.
OK this one is pretty nuts. Everyone except seniors basically has to do this before any semester. This does not affect me, but to get the full sense of absurdity for this policy, you must read number 4:

4. No alcoholic beverages containing less than 5% alcohol will be permitted in any area before football games.
That's right. Whiskey will not get you more drunk than beer. I am really really not sure what this was supposed to accomplish. Again there was a general sense of WTF around campus, and questions were asked, but there was no widespread involvement to try to get answers to this policy or even try to change it. Actually, I found lots of people asking questions online:

"Can anyone explain to me how they came up with the conclusion that liquor is permitted in the grove over beer? I mean who in there right mind beleives that liquor is safer than beer."

But, as Colbert illustrated, armchair protests. What people need to do is come together for a common cause. From the short time I have been in college, I have seen it go from a pretty liberal state to a pretty restricted state. I cannot imagine what people from decades ago think of the college culture now. I can't help but think that students today are become more and more like automatons, and I sincerely hope this changes before my daughter starts absorbing this kind of thinking.