Colleges are not particularly known for their conservative professors, republican students, or their right-wing administrators. Actually, it is often times exactly the opposite. Most top tier colleges in America right now tend to lean at least moderately left, if not far left. Jerry Falwell Jr., the president of Liberty University, is one of the only well known university presidents who leans to the right in political terms. While colleges are mostly filled with liberal people, that doesn’t stop the next generation of conservatives from getting their education. Myself, I got lucky. My school is a place with barely 3,000 students, and the professors, at least so far, never let their own political bias show or affect grading. I, of course, have met people that completely disagree with me politically, but, most of the time, me and that person have been able to have a discussion and walk away as friends, or at least with no animosity between us. Unfortunately, this is not always the experience that conservatives my age have at their respective institutes.
Conservatives are often looked at as the ugly ducklings by their liberal peers on college campuses. Some university administrators share in this view of young conservatives. As was the case recently at University of California-Irvine. The UC Irvine College Republicans recently hosted an event featuring conservative provocateur Milo Yiannopoulos. Milo is a gay conservative and is popular among college aged conservatives due largely to his nation wide campus tour. Milo gave a talk at UC Irvine on his views about feminism and political correctness among other things, and in turn the college republicans club was suspended because of this talk. The club was eventually reinstated due to the backlash that was received from its donors and students. In this situation, free speech prevailed and the UC Irvine college republicans lived to see another day, but the threat of being shut down based on political opinions is still hanging over the heads of other republican groups on college campuses nationwide.
As the saying goes, “If you’re not a liberal in your twenties you have no heart, if you’re not a conservative in your thirties you have no brain.” Whether this statement is true or not is a completely different debate, but I think the reason that this saying was coined in the first place can say a lot about the world we live in. Kids are taught from the second they get into school that feelings matter most, and that if someone is offended by something that was said, that makes what was said inherently wrong. Somehow, I and many others skipped this part of life and developed a set of values based on freedom and liberty for all. Conservatives get a bad wrap. We are not all “anti-gay”, or “anti-woman” as we are made out to be. Conservative means just that. We aim to conserve a society and a system that has worked in the past, and we fight to conserve the constitution and the values that this great country was founded on.