Today, college students’ back-to-school shopping cart may be filled with pens, binders, notebooks, shower shoes, Red Bull, and posters of Taylor Swift, but these essentials stop short of preparing students for the harsher realities of life on our nation's campuses. 

This year, students across the country are adding a new school supply to their lists—intellectual ammunition against their progressive professors. 


Last fall, Virginia Tech student Lauren McCue was harassed by professors for bringing Bay Buchanan, U.S. Treasurer during the Reagan administration, onto campus to speak about immigration policy. One professor actually called McCue (who is a minority) a racist in front of a lecture hall full of students.  

In fact, every school year the national media is inundated with stories of liberal bias from campuses around the nation. Whether professors are railing against free enterprise, teaching students wildly inaccurate lessons on President Reagan, or just telling young people “it’s okay to hate” conservatives, leftist educators seem to be getting more biased every year.  

These experiences have left conservative students, like Lauren McCue, desperate for arguments to use when professors attempt to slip these progressive clichés into lectures without being challenged.  

“The situation on my campus has gotten so bad, I’m spending my summer break learning how to defend conservative values from professors who routinely trash them in class,” McCue said.  

One way she plans to prepare: Reading Excuse Me, Professor, a new book released this month by Young America’s Foundation and the Foundation for Economic Education.  

The book tackles 52 clichés of progressivism that students are most likely to encounter in their college classrooms and debunks them with quick and easy-to-understand essays. Clichés addressed by the book include everything from, “The Minimum Wage Helps the Poor,” to “Statistical Disparities Between Races Prove Discrimination,” to “Free Markets Exploit Women.”

“Those are arguments I hear all of the time from my professors and peers,” said McCue. “I need to have the right arguments on the tip of my tongue to combat these myths that are being pushed on students.” 

Lawrence W. Reed, president of the Foundation for Economic Education and the book’s editor, said, “College students today are regularly taught incomplete or even skewed accounts of history, economics, and the role of government in a free society.”  

Reed continued, “Excuse Me, Professor debunks the myths and half-truths taught in many classrooms, allowing curious students to erect intellectual immune systems to guard against insidious progressive indoctrination.” 

Even if your students’ back-to-school shopping carts are overflowing with Ramen noodles and mechanical pencils, they won’t be fully prepared for the fall semester until they’re able to recognize and argue against the progressive clichés they are sure to encounter on their campuses.  

“I know this is the one time of year I don’t have homework and I should be relaxing, but I need to be ready to defend my values and beliefs this fall,” said McCue. “I can always read on the beach.”

Jashinsky is the program officer at Young America’s Foundation, the principal outreach organization of the Conservative Movement committed to America’s youth.