The appalling discrimination against America’s young conservatives
Longstanding and ongoing discrimination against conservative, Republican and Christian thought has been debated in so many ways that it has morphed into “white noise” that many people basically ignore. We forget there are human faces, and potentially punitive and lasting consequences, attached to such discrimination.
These consequences can affect even the lives of young Americans.
I attended a recent Republican event headlined by a congressman. After his remarks, he welcomed questions from the audience. At the back of the room, among the 50-, 60- and 70-year-old attendees, was a table of high school students.
One student spoke passionately into the microphone about the discrimination that she and her fellow conservative schoolmates encounter, sometimes on a daily basis, from teachers at their public school.
It is discrimination, she said, “which seeks to silence us, to punish us, which deliberately lowers our GPA, which adversely affects the chances of us getting into college and, therefore, a better job and a better life.”
“No one seems to care,” she added — a literal plea for help. This young woman explained that if she dares question the liberal groupthink of her high school teachers, whether in a written essay or a classroom discussion, she is penalized academically in some way.
The desperation in her voice was palpable as she outlined this growing injustice that, sadly, many school districts are able to hide from public view.
Unfortunately, the congressman offered up a generic answer before moving on with other generic answers to heartfelt questions from his constituents. Afterward, I approached him and one of his aides — but I, too, was dismissed.
Leaving aside the damaging disinterest of entrenched establishment politicians, a high school student’s plea for help from the “adults in the room” should serve as a major warning flag for all who believe that no student should be discriminated against — ever.
That includes young people who happen to be conservative or Republican.
The next day, remembering that anguished student’s voice, I reached out to several friends to arrange a conversation with a few high school and middle school students.
One of these students, who proudly proclaimed to be liberal and part of the “resistance” against President Trump, shockingly acknowledged to me, “Oh yeah. If any of my conservative friends speak out to defend Trump or a conservative viewpoint or especially question global warming, they are screwed over by the teachers.”
As we have been reminded over the years in the media, academia and entertainment industry, no one “hates discrimination” more than Democrats and liberals — unless, evidently, they are the ones wielding it for their own advancement or dominance.
It is often pointed out that, over the past few decades, thanks in part to discrimination, the left largely has gained control over the three biggest megaphones of our nation: the media, academia and the entertainment industry. Not by coincidence, these are the same institutions that condemn discrimination selectively.
It also has been noted that bias against Republican and conservative thought has filtered into social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube and the search engines powering them.
It’s one thing to know that reality, and even to accept it, as a part of the everyday life of a Republican or conservative American. It’s quite another when you hear a child — whose academic “sin” is being conservative — ask for help to thwart discrimination that could threaten her opportunities for a better education and more secure future.
The system clearly has failed these children, who are simply choosing to think for themselves about issues and draw their own conclusions. Why are liberal teachers, administrators, unions and politicians so afraid of young people thinking for themselves?
It’s time for parents — and all adults — to stand as one to stop the pervasive, partisan discrimination targeting young people. Potentially, this could happen to your children.
Douglas MacKinnon, a political and communications consultant, was a writer in the White House for Presidents Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush, and former special assistant for policy and communications at the Pentagon during the last three years of the Bush administration.