Pro Active Alternatives to Campus Liberalism · 30 October 2005

By Ruth Malhotra--YAF.org--09/29/05

As we're settling back into school this Fall and preparing for another successful semester of conservative campus activism, many of us have undoubtedly been welcomed to campus with the warm greetings of partisan professors and left-wing events. My experiences over the past three years have provided many opportunities to confront radical leftists and challenge extreme liberal ideology on campus. As I begin my senior year of college, I find myself bracing for many more opportunities.

Even my first few weeks of class have proved to be a time of great enlightenment. I have learned that the Bush White House determines foreign policy by how they can accelerate the Apocalypse, that elections in the United States are not as free or fair as they are in countries such as Venezuela, and of course, that the Federal government is directly responsible for thousands of deaths in Hurricane Katrina. It is against this acutely liberal backdrop that conservative campus activists must operate with a clear sense of purpose and direction, undeterred by the distorted propaganda proliferated by the Left.

The opposing ideas of liberalism and conservatism vying for dominance on college campuses are a reflection of the trends prevalent in mainstream society. The differences between the Right and the Left are becoming more apparent, and there is a glaring divide between the motives and methods that distinguish the conservative activists from their liberal counterparts. We follow separate strategies in how we express our values, recognize significant historical events, and handle times of national crisis.

The fourth anniversary of September 11, 2001 presented one such example. Many conservative students across the country felt strongly that something should be done to honor the victims of the 9/11 terrorist attacks and reflect on what happened to America on that significant day. At my school in particular, we worked with a broad coalition of campus groups to organize an American flag memorial as part of Young America's Foundation's 9/11: Never Forget Project. The memorial gave the community a chance to recognize the anniversary in a simple yet powerful way. Our initiative was a time of solemn remembrance, a statement of solidarity as students united to remember 9/11. We thought the activity was devoid of controversy; however liberals distorted our motives and claimed that we had exploited the national tragedy to simply advance our cause. Campus leftists dismissed the project as "too pro-American" in nature, and many chose to ignore the 9/11 anniversary altogether.

"While the left's refusal to honor the victims of terrorism was disappointing, it certainly wasn't shocking," said conservative student activist Britton Alexander." Many on the left forward their destructive agenda by refusing to honor those that died while fighting for the American way of life."

Another example relates to "Constitution Day," a new event instituted this year on campuses across the country. A bill authored by West Virginia Senator Robert Byrd mandated that all schools and colleges receiving federal funds must acknowledge September 17 as Constitution Day, and incorporate relevant activities.

What was perplexing, however, is the way in which Georgia Tech administrators chose to recognize this event. Instead of handing out copies of the US Constitution or at the very least encouraging students to read the actual document, school officials used Constitution Day as an opportunity to once again promote their liberal agenda. For example, the administration marked off a "free speech zone" on campus and encouraged students to speak their mind for a specified time period in a certain location. I found this rather absurd, because until now I had assumed that freedom of speech applied all the time and all over campus. What I found most disturbing was an event organized by the school's Women's Resource Center called, "Are women included in the Constitution?", which turned out to be nothing more than a feminist sob session about how women are excluded and a pep rally for the Equal Rights Amendment. Rather then being presented with different perspectives on the issue, students were taught that "the reason conservatives such as Phyllis Schlafly have been successful in this country is because they have deep pockets, while the [liberals] who are actually fighting for America have to pay for it on their own."

Another example of how Georgia Tech conservatives advance our ideas relates to the U.S.-led war on terror-an issue where college campuses are at the forefront of the debate. "Peace-loving" professors take every opportunity to militantly speak out against the war in Iraq and assigned textbooks are significantly skewed towards a leftist - dare I say anti-American - view of U.S. military action. Last Spring, for the second anniversary of the liberation of Baghdad, my conservative student group decided to offer a positive alternative to the constant barrage of anti-war activities taking place on campus. We invited U.S. Army Lieutenant Colonel Scott Rutter to share his first-hand account of the Third Infantry Division's assault on Baghdad during Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2003. "I love coming to college campuses to tell my story," Rutter said. "As a soldier, I've lived what I talk about… it's much more effective than simply reading about the events in a textbook." The event, made possible by Young America's Foundation, gave students a unique opportunity to hear a soldier's perspective on what is actually happening in Iraq, and Rutter shared insights on everything from bias in the mainstream media to life after the military. Everyone acknowledged that the event was a real success, and Rutter emphasized the value of proactive involvement: "Thank you for the work you're doing. It is important that we get the message out, so keep up the good fight."

The pie-throwing left is characterized by their extreme negativity and hatred for conservatives. This is evident in their response to everything from the war in Iraq to Hurricane Katrina to the Supreme Court nomination process, as they place all the blame on the President and conservatives in authority. This irrational approach, based on perceptual distortions, must be confronted by a proactive response and conservatives must provide a strong counter-offensive to the liberal agenda. Instead of being threatened by opposition, we should engage in constructive debate and remain confident in our ideals, offering real solutions to the challenges we face. It is evident that conservatives are making a significant impact on campuses across the country, and our recent successes should not lead to complacency but rather motivate us further to spread the conservative message. In confronting campus leftists, we must adopt a deliberate response instead of an impulsive reaction and encourage like-minded students to become participants rather than spectators in conservative campus activism.


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Ruth Malhotra is a senior at the Georgia Institute of Technology, majoring in International affairs and public policy. She is the president of Georgia Tech's SAF chapter.