Wednesday, February 07, 2007

The DePaul Conservative Resistance: A Call for Change

Over two weeks ago, conservative author David Horowitz came to DePaul to speak about the blatant disregard professors have in indoctrinating their students to subscribe to their political agenda. He came under the auspices of the DePaul Conservative Alliance (DCA), and as Vice-President of this organization, I can tell you that Horowitz was not just invited to stir things up at DePaul. Contrary to popular belief, the endgame for the DCA is not drumming up controversy by inviting speakers or hosting bake sales. Rather, we are calling for action to reform this educational institution into a bastion of high intellectual standards while tolerating and informing students of the many conservative ideologies that exist in the world.

This call for change will often seem as though we are devoted to conflict and quarrel, but rest assured, the goals of our operation and existence are not to, in the words of Frederick Douglass, “agitate, agitate, agitate.” Our movement is in essence a reaction to the prevailing tenets and structures in place at DePaul. Like Newton’s Third Law of motion, for every action there is an equal an opposite reaction; only in this case, we hope to go beyond an ‘equal’ reaction. In any event, we are seeking change. The path to reform is never easy, and the DCA fully recognizes this fact. Our progress so far, at least in the last two and a half years, has made considerable headway.

Two and a half years ago there was no DCA. Two and a half years ago the College Republicans were a group of about five people that maybe met once a month to discuss how Clinton should have been impeached and that the ‘weapons of mass destruction’ are still in Syria somewhere. Two and a half years ago, there was no conservative literature or newspaper distributed around campus. Two and a half years ago, conservatism was all but dead at DePaul.

But then, the fraudulent Ward Churchill was invited by the Cultural Center to speak at DePaul on his ‘little Eichman’ college campus tour, and the closet-conservatives at DePaul had finally had enough. Students mobilized and came out in droves to protest the man who said, “Innocent? Gimme a break.” in reference to the Americans who perished on 9/11. After Student Life banned us from protesting the event with posters, then College Republican President Joseph Blewitt found himself on ‘Hannity and Colmes’ discussing DePaul’s ridiculous “anti-propaganda” policy. The name ‘Ward Churchill’ quickly became the conservative rallying cry and catalyst for our movement.

To be fair, the conservative movement had started much sooner than the beginning of 2005. In terms of planning and preparation, some of the conservative students at DePaul, including myself, were mobilizing at the end of 2004 in hopes of creating a conservative newspaper at DePaul. After several months of hard work, our mission was successful and in November of 2005 the Lincoln Park Statesman was born.

The affirmative action bake sale is what put the DCA on the map. As a satirical attempt to protest the policy of affirmative action, the bake sale proved to open up discussion about the once taboo topic, and it also served as a recruiting tool for many conservatives to join our cause. Many called the bake sale ‘racist’ (the ‘McCarthyism’ of today) and in the face of adversity from the administration, the DCA fired back by gaining the media’s attention and threatening legal action with the help of the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE).

Since its inception, the DCA has increased membership from roughly four to twenty-five active members. The College Republicans are now a legitimate organization at DePaul who are also seeking to make a difference on campus. After hearing Horowitz speak, the conservative movement is remided of why we need to subsist and why we must fight the academic status quo. The indoctrination from Lefist professors still permeates the college classroom. As Horowitz pointed out, a college student will go four years in the LA&S dept without ever reading Friedrich Hayek, a conservative and Nobel Prize winner.

The ideological struggle is a difficult one indeed, but success is never achieved unless this struggle exists. The administration has somewhat accomodated our presence on campus, but more needs to be done in the classrooms. The conservative movement continues to grow at DePaul and we are still calling for change.

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