Republicans Increasingly Believe That Education Is Bad For America

Erica

According to Pew Research Center, 58% of conservatives believe higher education negatively affects society's direction.

Republicans' appreciation for higher education is waning more with time, leaving education advocates concerned that conservative disdain for universities and colleges might have the power to threaten such institutions.

According to the Washington Post,

In July, a Pew Research Center study found that 58 percent of Republicans and GOP-leaning independents believe colleges and universities have a negative effect “on the way things are going in the country"....

That number is up from 37 percent just two years ago.

A Gallup poll in August found that a third of Republicans had confidence in universities, which they viewed as too liberal or political.

Some Republicans simply see higher education as a waste of money; others believe it is liberal indoctrination.

“Why does a kid go to a major university these days?” said Frank Antenori, 51, a former Green Beret who served in the Arizona state legislature. “A lot of Republicans would say they go there to get brainwashed and learn how to become activists and basically go out in the world and cause trouble.”

Though U.S. universities are envied around the world, he and other conservatives want to reduce the flow of government cash to what they see as elitist, politically correct institutions that often fail to provide practical skills for the job market.

Comments (129)
No. 1-50
jodysheridan
jodysheridan

The propensity for anti-intellectualism in America is alarming. It's hard to believe that people see America thriving and civil in a culture of ignorance. What is the underlying thread that ties these people together in this belief structure? Ignorance doesn't make sense.

Tyrone88
Tyrone88

The greatest asset a democratic society can have is a healthy and well educated population. The greatest asset a tyrant can have is an uneducated and unhealthy population.

Where a leader stands on these issues tells you much of their intent.

FrankAF
FrankAF

jodysheriden The embracing of ignorance makes sense to the ignorant and in particular to the extremely insecure. You've heard of GroupThink? People who are extremely insecure fear being ridiculed or shunned if their beliefs differ from the masses. I'm from NJ and I believe Bruce Springsteen is a horrible singer and a middling musician whose songs are pedantic at best, which puts me in a very small club. I also hate the Yankees. Yet I've seen time and time again people spending thousands of dollars to attend consecutive days of Springsteen concerts (as much as 10 or 11 days in a row) and/or numerous Yankees games during a season, proclaiming their love but when asked could only name a handful of songs by the former or a few names of players of the latter. They aren't fans. They're just extremely insecure people who are amazingly fearful of being different from the masses. So it is with ignorant vs. informed people. As a kicker, know that ignorance requires no effort whereas being informed does. So I'll add laziness to the formula. We have become a country where the majority of the citizens are extremely insecure and lazy.

johannah53
johannah53

FrankAF......you are precisely right. Makes perfect sense to me. Ignorance is bliss maybe??

johannah53
johannah53

.....and all of the blissfully ignorant love having their dummy-in-chief as willfully marble-brained as they are.

MrJet51
MrJet51

Education & a robust free press are the two things that keep The Beast at bay. The 1 in 10 that are afraid of learning and progress and inventions and innovation are trying the best they can to kill off these values that built the nation that they have thrived in. "Forgive them, for they know not what they do" comes in handy to grasp what's going on. They are like children afraid of the dark - the unknown. They fear the future and want it dumbed down and they embrace the society of an autocratic S. American dictatorship with our own ridiculous version of Castro at the helm. Life will defeat them. 9/10ths of Americans will not choose to side with their embrace of Orwellian slogans like "Ignorance is Strength". Their predictably low numbers and paralyzingly fear will doom their apocalyptic yearnings. Even their idolatrous book preaches this ~
"Fear is not of God" - Matthew
"Without vision the people perish." - Proverbs

Dooooh
Dooooh

<Sarcasm hat on> Of course it's better to remain ignorant, that way you don't get too confused and hurt yourself. More and more education leads to thinking about things from different angles, and that creates confusion, and soon you realize that people are more the same than they are different. Who wants to know that? We learned everything we need to know by the 6th grade. Too much smarty pantsness and intelektial bullhocky from those snowflakey libtards we don't need! Ancient aliens built this world. They are called "Angels" in the constitution known as THE BIBLE. And America was founded by devout Christians. Before the liberals messed things up our US constitution contained language bout Jesus, God, and God Jesus, and even the baby Jesus. But those darn libtardy homosexuals took all those words out. That's a conspiracy that the left colllage edumcated don't allow the elite mass media that Soros created to cover. And that goes way back to right before the Civil War when the same Soros liberal controlled media made the south look bad and printed fake news about how the south wanted to keep slavery. No they didn't. They just wanted a country like God intended with some people created better than others, and the lesser people work and do stuff for the better people. Everyone was happier then even the slaves who liked having something to do. Too much knowing hurts the brain and that makes you gay, liberal, and makes you hate guns and NASCAR! Not to mention you start to believe women when they claim they were sexually harassed or abused. Those things aren't true, and if women stayed at home and in the kitchen raising babies then there wouldn't be all these problems.

AB2018
AB2018

I am not quite sure if you are a stupid moron or what you wrote was sarcastic. I hope for the former.

dgolson45
dgolson45

This is so sad, but why am I not surprised?

dgolson45
dgolson45

Perhaps higher education is designed to provide students with skills "for the job market", but far more important is the task of education to enable people to THINK. That is a skill Republicans have clearly not mastered.

rudy el mero
rudy el mero

When I was growing up there was a radio show called It "Pays to be Ignorant." It would start out with the song: "It pays to be ignorant, to dumb, to be stupid, to be ignorant. Just like you!" Education is what made America. The work ethic of Blacks, Mexicans and immigrants fueled the industrial Empire. An indication that the Empire was going down was when it had to import German rocket scientists. Einstein was not educated here. The rocket scientists were educated in Germany. How many rocket scientists could have come out of Kentucky, Georgia, Alabama or Mississippi? So they don't believe that education is good, well it pays to be ignorant, hopefully not like them.

John Mason
John Mason

Conservatism has gone back to its roots, to being determined that people stay ignorant and easlily brainwash-able.

Hamish
Hamish

86% of conservatives are idiots, in that case. They want to keep everyone barefoot and pregnant including the men.

KristyL
KristyL

So you hope for the former -- that someone is a stupid moron? I hope for the latter -- that sarcasm is being used, because it's making a point.

Jayhawk
Jayhawk
(deleted message)

And here we have Exhibit A! If this "person" had a decent education, this "person" would not comment such garbage. But this "person" is obviously certain that too much "book larnin'" is bad for the soul. I do believe that this "person" isn't capable of the intellectual discipline needed to benefit from an education. This is, for the benefit of this "person," called "sour grapes." Hint: trying to bring other people down is not an effective way to elevate yourself. Arrogance is no substitute for knowledge. Knowledge is no substitute for wisdom....

Alex123
Alex123

They are right. Back when you liberals had complete control over the media you could pretend to not know about the indoctrination but now that we have youtube and alt media it is being exposed. You could also examine this from the angle of the parasitic school loan con game that is going on. And universities selling out Americans to bring in foreigners which is both running up the cost of tuition and running down wages.

Dave5555
Dave5555

I'm old enough to remember the days before Fox News even existed. The sad truth is that universities and liberal, urban centers are the last holdouts, resisting the brain dead propaganda of the conservative cult. Both city government and universities will be under attack by conservative lies and half truths until they win. Unfortunately, it's the people who lose in the long run.

Kingjarvis
Kingjarvis

Conservatives don’t like a bunch of critical thinkers around. They like to peddle one side of the story and have their base accept it as scripture. An example is that conservatives don’t see $100 billion a year given to Exxon and Dow Chemicals as an entitlement payment. Food stamps and Medicaid are the only entitlements they accept as negative, while both are exactly the same. Taxpayer money being spent.

Antonius Block
Antonius Block

They are not against higher education; they are against the left-wing bias among educators, which they views as anti-American propaganda -- and they're right. I have seen the text books and sat in on the classes for years. There is an incredible amount of leftist political bias in higher education now. It's not a fair objective look at history or the world, and it does nothing to instill the value of critical thought and open inquiry. It's essentially the superimposition of a Marxist worldview and a rejection of Enlightenment values. Education is being used as a tool to indoctrinate a certain worldview, one that ultimately supports militant authoritarianism. The Maven should be covering that story.

MBailey
MBailey

William F Buckley specifically so.

DannaH
DannaH

ime job and preach God's word door to door full time. Well, you know what? That is exactly what happened. The problem was, those people could not afford to support the church with donations because it took every cent they had to support their families. So you know what happened? The church had an amazing flip flop on higher education. But they still told their followers not to take courses like philosophy, you know classes that get you thinking for yourself.

uisgeachan
uisgeachan

The problem isn't higher education. It's what universities have increasingly become: places where freedom of inquiry is stifled, unfashionable viewpoints are suppressed, and political indoctrination rather than education is the business of the classroom. The problem is that one is discouraged from thinking for oneself and made to engage in politically correct groupthink. The life of the mind is stifled, and to pretend that the unease conservatives have with higher education today is anything other than contempt for the publicly financed political brainwashing of America's youth by the extreme Left is hypocritical and dishonest.

PFD572
PFD572

Wow, the brainwashing of the self-inflicted ignorant. Before the money of Murdocks and Koch's, the media was independent and ran the entire gamut of political views. You're so uneducated (whether you went to college/university or not), so confined by your blinders, that you have devolved to a level of ignorance, unjustified fear and needing someone to control you that you have become incapable to recognizing fact from fiction and have no desire to check for yourself the truth. When you know you're being lied to, you are no longer able to consciously acknowledge it or you are so bigoted, selfish, self-absorbed, narcissistic and dictionary definitions of hypocrites. Thankfully, the pendulum swings and soon there will be sanity, intelligence, curiousity, questioning that is the norm, again,; with people who search for the answers, the facts ,i.e. the majority, back in leadership. The stifling of students??? From the 60's forward, up to the financial influence of far-right extremism, students gained greater and greater freedom to question, to express and to think for themself.

PFD572
PFD572

Who needs doctors, engineers, research scientists in medicine, agriculture, etc , writers, physicists, meterologists, veteranarians, architects, lawyers/judges, business administrators, computer scientists, aeronautics, forestry, historians, mathmeticians, microbiologists, space scientists........or teachers......

Abeeftec
Abeeftec

This article is pathetic. They are not against education but indoctrination.
And those in the comment section who are trying to claim that Koch brothers caused this problem, really? Get lost.

Firenze
Firenze

You said: “Yes that is exactly true. I work at a college as well as have a child that is doctorate student. Its completely crazy, you can’t have a point of view they disagree with”

Well that describes Donald Trump and the Republican Party ! Indeed it is “completely crazy.”

RufusLeaking
RufusLeaking

America's willfully ignorant, aka the republican party and all rightwingers, have always hated public education in particular and all education in general. It's always been that way. They are threatened by critical thinking, and they find comfort in tribalism and jingoism. Brownshirt, marching in lockstep. Forever and always.

Tony in Texas
Tony in Texas

BULL.. the Problem is, with Republicans is they don't want PUBLIC Education and the DON"T want Higher Education that FREES someone's brain from the GOPER DOPER LYING BS that REPUBLICANS spit out continuously.. they can't have their slaves on the USA Plantation when they are EDUCATED !! and THAT is the bottomline to this situation !! keep 'em dumb so that can run and rule over everyone else !!

Mynxie
Mynxie

That is all lies. I went to college. We were encouraged to have our own view points, we were also encouraged to not be biased in anyway. We had to write biased papers and unbiased papers. We wrote more unbiased papers than anything. We also had to write papers based on opposing points of view and tell it from the other side. We were encouraged to think critically, ask questions, do research, expand our knowledge and our minds. We were taught to see things from all sides, and focus on the truth and unbiased views whenever possible. We were taught to always use sources, and only trust those who cite their sources. When in political science courses or civics courses we learn it all, from all angles but also mostly dealing in facts. They have no bias when teaching the course, nor do the text books, nor do the books for reading lists. I attended two colleges and it was the same at both. Neither could be called a Liberal nor a Conservative college. Have you actually been to college??? Well that is a stupid question. If you had you would already know all of this. If you did it must have been a Conservative college who brainwashed you instead of the other way around. Get facts and experience before spreading lies.

MarketPlaceOfIdeas
MarketPlaceOfIdeas

As mentioned in numerous replies already, Academic Freedom is under attack on most college campuses! Perhaps students have not noticed, but educators (like myself) have personally witnessed and experienced the direct attack underway on Academic Freedom. Academic Freedom falls under the First Amendment and the fundamental freedoms afforded to free speech and expression is in jeopardy, not only on college campuses, but in society as a whole, as well. Whether in a college classroom, or on a football field, the ability to express and explore ideas out of "favor of mainstream ideology" is endangered. People worry about losing their Second Amendment rights, when First Amendment freedoms represent the very foundation upon which this nation was built -- the market place of ideas! When the ability to explore, question, challenge, and go beyond the established norm is thwarted, our collective ability as individuals and a nation, to grow and thrive will be in jeopardy. As this happens, our potential possibilities as a society will regress into a decaying, limited, and dismal future! In the desire to acquire a sense of safety and security, I don't think this is what conservatives REALLY desire...

MarketPlaceOfIdeas
MarketPlaceOfIdeas

The educational system was designed to create workers for the industrial revolution's production lines! We profess to value critical thinking in education and then when students challenge contemporary concepts, step outside of the "learning objectives" and fail to grasp "student competencies" as pre-determined, they FAIL Does the educational system REALLY foster critical thinking abilities OR does it simply serve to program effective BOTS???

Drakelover
Drakelover

Since when is the left critical thinkers? Interview most college students and they can name celebrities, but don't know who's running their State and occasionally Federal government. Things they SHOULD know if they vote. They are just pawns for the media and Democrats. They are the ones making the brown shirts. Hitler was socialist.

yon
yon

Intelligence, most certainly, is the enemy of the ignorant and evil GOP...

Peteaz
Peteaz

Nice try, you gullible Liberals, but education is not what we object to..The Indoctrination, hate, intolerance, is the problem..Oh and the "uneducated" Trump was referring to, are the plumbers, and welders etc, making 80K a year, while Liberal arts majors owe 70K in school loans, serving coffee at Starbucks, for $9 an hour..lol..

durak_zheni
durak_zheni

Sorry Peteaz, but there is no indoctrination, and that hate an intolerance that you speak of is only hate an intolerance of ignorance. That plumber making 80K a year will always make 80K a year. Those liberal arts majors currently working at Starbucks will soon be your boss! So sad to be you!

Ray_Mond
Ray_Mond

That's because Republicans are a bunch of Bible beaters, and science does not support their mythology.

Pearl
Pearl

You don't think the billions of dollars the Koch brothers pay politicians has anything to do with policy? How about Big pharma? The fossil fuel industry? Maybe you will open yourself to reality when I tell you the Democratic party is guilty of it, too. Both sides serve their donors. You're naive to think otherwise as the proof is readily available.
Liberals have been guilty of shutting down conservative speakers and that is wrong. They did it to Bill Maher, too.
I do think conservatives hinder education. They're notoriously anti-science. They are the reason teachers are afraid to teach evoloution because they their beliefs are equivalent to scientific facts.

Granny Teach
Granny Teach

Not true I am a retired teacher!

Yossarian Johnson
Yossarian Johnson

Editor

Granny, there is a big difference between anecdotal evidence and science based statistics.

GeneRHutchins
GeneRHutchins

There is value in education and conservatives know this. What is of dubious value are parts of the curriculum. Particularly offensive: the twisted perspectives of History, English,. Science and math are also compromised by presenting global warming as 'proven and irrefutable !'.
As to college: What is Gender Studies ?? What discipline is this? Male vs Female, that has meaning if you talking about electrical connectors or plumbing fittings.


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