A. Linder responds to Barnwell's observations below.

Bill's African Adventure

by Bill Barnwell

It is no secret that our public universities serve as a means to indoctrinate young men and women with a far-left social and political agenda. There are many campus stories I could share of ridiculous political correctness, phony "hate crimes" accusations, and persecution of conservatives and Christians. But today, I'd like to share with everybody some information about a class I am completing called "African-American Culture and History."

We need good doctors, lawyers, and engineers, but have you ever stopped to wonder what the world would be like if we didn't have experts in fields such as African Studies or Chicano Studies? We can be optimistic about the fact that it is probably only a matter of time before we get a "Gay-Bi-Les-Transexual Studies" major (the University of Michigan has already started marketing a class called "How to Be Gay 101").

It doesn't end there. My university has also started offering a class on "hate crimes." This class "examines and monitors the activities of the far right." You can bet that the "hate crimes" employed against whites and Christians are conveniently left out of the studies. Then there are the economics classes I have taken that teach you how great the Federal Reserve and Alan Greenspan are, the sociology classes with professors that seem to begin and end every sentence with the words "race/class/gender/sexual orientation." However, this African Studies course really takes the cake.

For me, this course was taken as a graduation requirement, but for many more it is the first class taken for the African Studies Major. I had to sit in this class from 9 AM till 1 PM every Tuesday and Thursday. I had to read one book called Africanisms, which taught all about black influences in America and analyzed ancient African tribes. I learned that ancient African religions were superior to Christianity because they weren't so "divisive" and because they had a kind and gentle God compared to Christianity's mean and nasty one. I also learned that "Ebonics" was a "rule-based language," just like French, Spanish, and German (I'm serious).

Then there was a book called Hair Raising that spent over 200 pages talking about black hairstyles and the "politics" involved in leaving one's hair "nappy." We learned how "White America" compelled self-loathing black women to straighten their hair so they could look more like white women and have more self-esteem. Most interesting though, I learned that cosmetic industries are involved in a conspiracy to deny cosmetic products to individuals of color, so they cannot feel as beautiful as white people.

There was also a book called Race Rebels that was riddled with pro-Communist statements, smeared whites (of, course), and spent devoted more than 40 pages to analyzing "gangsta" rap music. Finally there was a book called Stylin that spent a couple hundred pages examining black, excuse me, African-American clothing styles since the slavery period, and of course, bashing the South.

Every class was full of mindless whining and talks about victimization. There were so many conspiracy theories about "White America" that my classmates made the "Who really killed Vince Foster" crowd look like amateurs. In short, this class taught you that you were a victim. If you are a poor "oppressed" black individual, everyone but yourself is responsible for your situation.

All the silliness was summed up in the final exam. Here are the questions, word for word that we were to answer:
1. Review the history of how African-Americans in the United States cared for their "course [sic]," "nappy," or "kinky" hair. In other words, explain how Africans and Negroes cared for and arranged their hair. Include related responses from the ruling culture and an overall perception of black hair. Further, taking into consideration what we've read, explain what can be threatening about the politics of African-American women wearing their hair natural without any harsh chemicals.
2. Reflect on Ebonics or African-American Vernacular English (AAVE) as represented in Asante's elements in African-American English." Characterize Hopkins' characters who speak AAVE and explain how they compare or contrast with workers, rappers and others in a culture of resistance. According to your information, what conclusions can be made concerning speakers of AAVE?
3. What does it mean to speak truth to power in the United States? Explain the consequences of such an act of resistance and include a discussion of Negro American Emancipation celebrations and the oppressions and terrorism suffered from the 1940's to the 1960's.

Perhaps I'm just a mean-spirited white Christian male, but this kind of left-wing garbage has absolutely no place in higher education. While our foreign competitors are actually learning things that will enhance their abilities in the global market, we Americans are learning how great it is to be gay and how to grovel to minorities. There is probably no reversing the damage done to higher education. Thankfully, it is only another year before I am out of here, and at that time, Išll be screaming, "Free at last, free at last, thank God Almighty, I'm free at last!"

August 12, 2000

Bill Barnwell is a freelance journalist and co-editor in chief of www.thepotatoe.com

A Response to Barnwell:

Interesting column, Bill. With all that nappy esoterica you've imbibed, you're no doubt suited to interpret more Jerry Springer insults than the average White.

I took an African history course myself back at Pomona in 1988, the year I graduated -- mostly because I figured I'd write about it one day. I guess this is that day.

I always thought the ironic thing about studying African history is that to the extent there is any, it was written by the people the profs hate: the White colonizers. So what you get are these third-rate Negro intellects too dim to appreciate the irony of A) their being in the thrall of a dead Jewish communist (Marx); and B) their lamenting the horrors visited on their beloved noble savages by the antecedents of the very Whites who now provide them the cushy sinecures from which they preach their tiresome, anti-historical balderdash.

One day, the prof -- a mild little guy, Mittyesque radical -- was spewing so much garbage about how popular the communist revolutionaries were in Angola that I couldn't help blurting out, well, if they're so popular, how come they need 40,000 Cuban troops to back'em up? At this he drew himself up and turned his shoulder, rather like an offended Victorian lady, and said, Does someone want to tell Mr. Linder where he's wrong? There were a couple disgusting Jews and freshman bleeding-brain women who were willing to do so. He gave me a lower grade than I deserved for the course, as he also did to a black African in the class I came to know. The Nigerian told me he had come to America to learn about capitalism and freedom, but when we compared notes, the prof had downgraded both of us because we weren't leftists. I really should have filed a protest with the proper dean, but it was my last semester, and I was so sick of college I just didn't care.

The week after I graduated, some friends and I relaxed for a nice week in a beach house in San Diego. While there one day we happened to see the skinny Black Marxist and would-be firebrand strolling with his inamorata, decked out in a Hawaiian shirt. All I could think of was poor Marx in his dirt and penury, reading by candlelight in all-night study sessions.

But Bill, though your words suggest you don't realize it yet, I think you will come to find the real world is scarcely freer than college.

A. Linder

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