Patrick Henry, where getting laid requires a 9-page letter
June 28, 2005 9:24 AM   Subscribe

Patrick Henry, a conservative Christian college (New Yorker) with eighty-five percent of incoming freshman being homeschooled, is a vernable breeding ground for future Republicans. Take cloistered kids, teach them one message, and Mr. Rove's clone army nears completion. The article is so quotable the whole thing must be read, as it fufills all our fears, stereotypes and snide comments sounds (Common Dreams). It scares our brother's across the pond, while the homeschooled community gets all wet just thinking about it. This raises several questions, what kind of politicians will sheltered college students be and how do they have fun without binge drinking, cocaine and sex?
posted by geoff. (96 comments total)

 
I should say quite seriously I'd love to see a television special or, perhaps too hopefully,a documentary film.

To me, homeschoolers always seemed not quite socially developed. I have fond memories of me and the chums realizing their parents fears by going up to them on testing days and asking, "You guys into bukkake/beastiality/DVDA?" which lead to the inevitable questions. Oh the wonder years.
posted by geoff. at 9:26 AM on June 28, 2005 [1 favorite]


ah, I take it you watched the Daily Show last night? (the author, HANNA ROSIN was the guest)
posted by delmoi at 9:35 AM on June 28, 2005


Yes but I get extra cool points for actually reading the article before seeing her on the Daily Show. Jon Stewart managed to fuck up another interview and didn't ask any questions I cared for. For anyone interested, they just kind of joke around for awhile and add no new information (except for the fact the kids at the college apparently watch the Daily Show).
posted by geoff. at 9:40 AM on June 28, 2005


I always thought one of the main reasons to love America was that we rejected theocracy. Now that so many voters are embracing that sort of government I find myself becoming more and more depressed. At some point I think I'll need to make a decision about whether to move to Canada or go on meds.
posted by y6y6y6 at 9:40 AM on June 28, 2005


While homeschooling, per se, has never concerned me much (hey...more power to you if you can successfully pull it off), what has always confused me is the willful, purposeful self-segregation of many such families from general society. Their inevitable complaints of being treated like second-class citizens has always seemed to be some sort of twisted self-fulfilled destiny.
posted by Thorzdad at 9:41 AM on June 28, 2005


Also, my (non-religious) mom tried to homeschool me in 4th grade because Kids would make fun of me. I didn't like it very much. At the time I didn't think I learned anythingn (My mom is as lazy as I), although we did go through The Discoverers which is a great book.
posted by delmoi at 9:42 AM on June 28, 2005


Yes but I get extra cool points for actually reading the article before seeing her on the Daily Show. Jon Stewart managed to fuck up another interview and didn't ask any questions I cared for.

Promotional interviews arn't for people who've done their homework, it's to get people to go out and read. But yeah, for how great he is Stewart is not the best interviewer.
posted by delmoi at 9:45 AM on June 28, 2005


I don't know if you are in public or private school, but FYI it's "brothers", not "brother's". The brothers across the pond are plural, not posessive.

That said, the snide attitude in the post is painful. (eg, "while the homeschooled community gets all wet just thinking about it") and obscures what might otherwise be some interesting information.
posted by thedevildancedlightly at 9:50 AM on June 28, 2005


You know, the main thing I got from that article was a sort of pity for those kids. I mean, I'm sure a few of them will go places and fulfill their will to power. But most of 'em will smash headfirst into the real world, and that's going to be jarring as all fuck. They'll have an extra layer of angst in their early 20s as they try to adjust, and that's on top of the fairly stressful college-real world transition that most people have to go through anyway.

I mean, just imagine when the kid who sends out the 9-page email about how women shouldn't tempt through dress gets a job in someone's HR department; it's a shitstorm waiting to happen.
posted by COBRA! at 9:51 AM on June 28, 2005


"To prepare Christian men and women who will lead our nation and shape our culture with timeless Biblical values and fidelity to the spirit of the American founding."


It is hard to believe that George Bush has ever read the works of George Orwell, but he seems, somehow, to have grasped a few Orwellian precepts. The lesson the President has learned best--and certainly the one that has been the most useful to him--is the axiom that if you repeat a lie often enough, people will believe it. One of his Administration's current favorites is the whopper about America having been founded on Christian principles. Our nation was founded not on Christian principles but on Enlightenment ones. God only entered the picture as a very minor player, and Jesus Christ was conspicuously absent.

Our Constitution makes no mention whatever of God. The omission was too obvious to have been anything but deliberate, in spite of Alexander Hamilton's flippant responses when asked about it: According to one account, he said that the new nation was not in need of "foreign aid"; according to another, he simply said "we forgot."
posted by four panels at 9:51 AM on June 28, 2005


Hey, I spent the last half-hour frusteratingly getting "JRUN errors" I have the right to be snide. I forgot to post McSweeney's Diary of a Patrick Henry College Student.
posted by geoff. at 9:52 AM on June 28, 2005


*shiver*

I'd like to believe that the fact that these people haven't been exposed to many alternative view points will completely destroy any chance they have in politics, but I've been wrong before.
posted by dial-tone at 9:54 AM on June 28, 2005


Interesting article that avoids the mockery that this FPP wallows in.
And to think they say liberals are mean...
posted by 4easypayments at 9:55 AM on June 28, 2005


At least it's easy to pick a major.
posted by dial-tone at 10:00 AM on June 28, 2005


Tiddles says since geoff didn't present the FPP information in a way that he deems suitable that everyone should ignore all this theocratic/GOP wackery and just move along.

Who funds/ed this 2 year old nut case college? Heritage? Scaife? Where do such nuts find employment upon graduation? Enquiring minds want to know what employer in his/her right mind would hire these graduates.
posted by nofundy at 10:01 AM on June 28, 2005


That was my thought too COBRA! I mean they can't all get jobs leading to "careers in influence in politics", can they? So where do they go from there?
posted by jamesonandwater at 10:06 AM on June 28, 2005


I dated a girl in highschool who's entire family was home schooled until the end of middle school. She definitely was lacking in some nominal social skills, but ultimately i think it probably helped insulate the kids from what can be a very shitty development period. Also their mother was a slave driver and all of the children came to high school with awards from National History Day, as well as several other nationwide competitions. They all go to swank schools now primarily as a result.

However, not sending your kid to highschool sounds like a horrible idea.
posted by sourbrew at 10:11 AM on June 28, 2005


I always thought one of the main reasons to love America was that we rejected theocracy. Now that so many voters are embracing that sort of government I find myself becoming more and more depressed.

Although there is a definite and ongoing march to theocracy and I find it alarming, I think that the media effect magnifies and distorts this considerably, like they do with shark attacks. Suddenly religious pundits are all over the airwaves and very much in evidence. Are people becoming more religious? Not necessarily, there are just people in power pushing an agenda that gets amplified by a lapdog media, in turn emboldening zealots.

I don't think most people want a theocracy. More likely, most people just don't pay close attention to some of the incremental changes that are leading us in that direction. But now that the religion thing is mrore in the forefront with the emboldened radical zealots out there in the public arena, we may see some increasing public discomfort evidence itself. I was heartened by the widespread reaction against the politics of the Schiavo thing.

Let me clarify, I have nothing against people of faith or religion, but I feel there must be strict separation of church and state, and I have strong antipathy to fundamentalists of any faith who want to control and dictate what others can or can't do.
posted by madamjujujive at 10:13 AM on June 28, 2005


Who funds/ed this 2 year old nut case college? Heritage? Scaife? Where do such nuts find employment upon graduation? Enquiring minds want to know what employer in his/her right mind would hire these graduates.

From the article:
Henry campus with four hundred thousand dollars from the Home School Legal Defense Association’s reserves; he raised the rest of the money for the college, nine million dollars, from parents and donors such as Tim LaHaye, the author of the best-selling “Left Behind” series. LaHaye’s portrait hangs in the main hall.
Where do such nuts find employment upon graduation? Enquiring minds want to know what employer in his/her right mind would hire these graduates.

if you'd *cough* read the article, you'd see most of them find jobs with the GOP.
posted by delmoi at 10:14 AM on June 28, 2005


Our Constitution makes no mention whatever of God

THAT'S NOT TRUE!

There's an "in the Year of our Lord" at the end, right on top of the signatures.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 10:15 AM on June 28, 2005


I was homeschooled. I'm now pretty liberal in my political leanings, despite what some would consider a 'sheltered' upbringing in Wheaton IL, a city known as that 'Evangelical Center of the Universe' before Colorado Springs took the title.

I knew a lot of other homeschooled kids growing p, and it is a mixed bag -- there are socially stunted recluses in the home schooling world just as there are maladjusted geeks in any public high school. The 'Parents Making a Sheltered World For Junior" vibe is a unique twist, but it's a relatively rare case in my experience.

The homeschoolers I hung out with were vibrant, snarky, questioning people who were passionate about learning. I'd be lying if I denied that the 'socially stunted conservative homeschoolers' exist, but it pisses off the majority of us when the whole bunch is labelled in such a way. Liberal are vapid granola-eating alan alda types. Gays are swishy fashion experts. Men are strong burden-bearers without emotions. Blah, blah.

Sorry for the mini-rant. It's a bit of a sore spot, really. My friends from that era and I are proud of where we are and what we've accomplished. I'm happily married, have friends from all walks of life, and am well-adjusted. We're out here, too, y'know.
posted by verb at 10:15 AM on June 28, 2005 [1 favorite]


Tiddles says since geoff didn't present the FPP information in a way that he deems suitable that everyone should ignore all this theocratic/GOP wackery and just move along.

Really? Is that what he said? Or did he say that geoff's writing "obscures what might otherwise be some interesting information"? Too bad there isn't some record of what he said.

Back OT, it's odd that there aren't some hard-line lefty schools to, you know, balance out places like Patrick Henry.
posted by pardonyou? at 10:21 AM on June 28, 2005


Verb: When I was in high school, I knew a girl who was home school. She was all of the things you describe yourself as. When I went to graduate school, every summer UT would allow the homeschoolers a huge convention. There were thousands of them, almost all cookie cutter molds of the Left Behind Loving, Hate filled stereotype. In terms of sheer numbers, they are winning, and tarnishing otherwise not-insane homeschool reputations.
posted by absalom at 10:22 AM on June 28, 2005


if you'd *cough* read the article, you'd see most of them find jobs with the GOP.

This is what scares me. I don't like religious home schooling, but that is not important. I don't have to like it, it's a free country.

But from my experience with home-schooled kids who are the children of Republicans, there is a MAJOR deficit of alternate viewpoints and critical thinking when it comes to Republican talking points. The guy I know seems to have parents that would be considered liberals next to folks that go to the school mentioned in the article, and yet he has gigantic holes in his mind.

I shudder to think what these folks that grow up and go straight into the GOP are like. These folks have never considered an alternate viewpoint in their life, and they have never given a moment's consideration that the party might be wrong on something.

It would be the same if some close-minded liberal raised their kids this way, but what scares me is the wholesale infrastructure to indoctrinate thousands of kids in a fantasy land constructed for political benefit, all being funneled right into the ruling party.

That's terrifying and not at all good. Folks like this tend to have so much invested in the party they are incapable of admitting to its fallibility, which makes for some horrible leadership skills.
posted by teece at 10:29 AM on June 28, 2005


Verb: When I was in high school, I knew a girl who was home school. She was all of the things you describe yourself as. When I went to graduate school, every summer UT would allow the homeschoolers a huge convention.

Ugh. The conventions...

Sigh. Maybe I should retract my rant, I'd forgotten those. Nothing spells fun like a roundtable discussion about pre-arranged marriage...
posted by verb at 10:34 AM on June 28, 2005


pardonyou? writes "Back OT, it's odd that there aren't some hard-line lefty schools to, you know, balance out places like Patrick Henry."

Yeah, damn Wellesley, teaching women that they have options besides being barefoot, pregnant and in the kitchen...
posted by clevershark at 10:37 AM on June 28, 2005


Once, she shook hands with George Bush and noticed that his hands were soft, not real rancher’s hands, like her dad’s. “You meet him and think, He’s just a man. What’s that expression? He puts on pants just like you.”
heh.
posted by delmoi at 10:42 AM on June 28, 2005


pardonyou?, I'm not quite sure those places are equivalent to Patrick Henry. They don't place limitations on their students' beliefs, politically or religiously - you don't have to sign something saying you believe in evolution, choice in abortion, or whatever. You could be a very very religious socially conservative kid, and you could still attend - you probably wouldn't feel very comfortable, but they wouldn't force you into behaving in 'liberal' ways or believing 'liberal' things. I wouldn't call any of them 'hard line', or even that much more liberal than most private colleges and universities. Furthermore, those schools don't send _all_ of their students to DC to intern with the most liberal of Democrats - none of them expects all their students to all become politicians who will take over the government and mold America in their own image. None of them were designed to shelter only people with liberal beliefs, and send them on to be liberal politicians. Saying "but see? there are some liberal schools" misses the point - there aren't liberal schools that were created to produce a small army of ideologically very narrow liberal politicians. [And really, I think it's better that way - indoctrination of any sort is something I find distasteful.]
posted by ubersturm at 10:44 AM on June 28, 2005


Yeah, damn Wellesley, teaching women that they have options besides being barefoot, pregnant and in the kitchen...

Wasn't talking about the respective merits of the ideology, clevershark. The thrust of the FPP was that Patrick Henry was deliberately pushing an ideology and encouraging its students to take a leadership role in society. The poster seemed to imply that this was nefarious in and of itself. I was merely pointing out that this isn't exactly new, and there are similar colleges on the left.
posted by pardonyou? at 10:53 AM on June 28, 2005


Q: Why did the Bennington student cross the road?

A: For credit!
posted by Snyder at 10:53 AM on June 28, 2005


No pardonyou, there aren't. When Antioch, Wellesley, & Company students get priority consideration for White House internships it will be a valid comparison to Patrick Henry. Students there are not merely being "encouraged" towards leadership roles...they are fasttracked straight into the best internships the Federal government can offer.
posted by solipse at 10:59 AM on June 28, 2005


foureasypayments says "Interesting article that avoids the mockery that this FPP wallows in."

I think this raises an interesting point, that might be worth discussing: the absence of any similar, concerted effort from "the left", is that many of those who are alarmed at the rise in power, numbers, and influence of the radical religious right don't have a firm ideology or dogma to advance that is in direct opposition to it.

Citizens arguing for secular government are generally advancing principles of tolerance and openness, not a dogma of control. What's critical to note is that there is a taboo against expressing disapproval (or--gasp--contempt) for the fundamentalist or evangelical worldview, and such expressions are often met with hostility like foureasypayments that says, essentially, one is bigoted for thinking that a literal biblical worldview is, well, a bit silly.

I have a right to object to those who see the world that way, who--in my view--see the world in fantastical mythological ways, with absolutely zero evidence to support such beliefs. In fact, I think it's silly, mindless, and robs biblical scripture of its real, metaphorical meaning and value, indeed is a belief motivated by the need to control, and that control is antithetical to concepts of freedom and personal liberty. But I would keep most of that to myself, as I was raised to be polite, if they would keep their view to themselves, too.

However, people who fervently believe fantastical things are gaining power and infuence on an unprecedented scale, and they want to directly control my behavior and life choices. I think I'm allowed to be a little impolite in expressing my objections to this. As long as one's beliefs are private, I will never question, challenge, or mock them; but when those beliefs are made a matter of public policy, of government, they better be prepared to hear what some of us think.

Until this taboo is broken, the ascendence of the radical religious right will continue unabated.
posted by LooseFilter at 11:05 AM on June 28, 2005


solipse, do you think in a liberal administration that students from Wellesley, Oberlin, etc., would be more likely to get internships? I do.

Anyway, I really don't want to engage in a big debate. I acknowledge that Patrick Henry is on its face more restrictive -- Oberlin, Antioch, etc. would certainly say that they welcome a religious, right-wing white male with open arms, while Patrick Henry makes no secret of its preferred pupil. But can we really disregard reality so easily? Have you ever met a conservative Oberlin or Antioch grad? (I haven't).

But whatever: My point is that the world is a big enough place to hold and foster all sorts of ideas. May the best win.
posted by pardonyou? at 11:09 AM on June 28, 2005


My point is that the world is a big enough place to hold and foster all sorts of ideas. May the best win.

Except that, in practice, the best idea often does not win; the idea shouted the loudest does. (And that shouting often involves a whole lot of pain and suffering.)
posted by LooseFilter at 11:12 AM on June 28, 2005


Why shouldn't Patrick Henry students be fast-tracked into this White House? They're not much more reliably in support of the President than Wellesley College folk are in opposition; check out Precinct G if you don't agree.

(One fascinating thing about the Wellesley election results is how many people vote for Barney Frank and Bush/Cheney. Power of incumbency...
posted by MattD at 11:21 AM on June 28, 2005


One other point inspired by geoff's juvenile fixation on the sexual impact of Patrick Henry's curriculum ("gets all wet" "bukkake/beastiality/DVDA"). geoff's title ("Patrick Henry, where getting laid requires a 9-page letter") reminds me of nothing so much as Antioch's infamous "sexual consent policy," which features such beauties as: Violations of these standards can result in discipline up to expulsion. Patrick Henry's got nothing on that red tape!
posted by pardonyou? at 11:21 AM on June 28, 2005


When all its work is done, the lie shall rot;
The truth is great, and shall prevail,
When none cares whether it prevail or not.
-Coventry Patmore

Plus Kansas and Ohio will be welfare states in a couple of years. Xians will stop voting for xian politicans when they run out of food.
posted by ewkpates at 11:28 AM on June 28, 2005


Pardonyou?, what do you consider a "lefty" to be, anyway?

From three of the four "hard-line" schools you mentioned come these explanations of their educational philosophy.


The academic curriculum provides students with a
broad liberal education that challenges values and
perspectives. It increases students' knowledge on a
wide range of subjects, encourages them to question
and think critically, and challenges their general
intellectual consciousness about themselves and the
society in which they live. (Antioch)

The College does not require you to fulfill a set of ready-
made requirements; instead, it challenges you to
discover your own intellectual identity and to design an
education that will help turn you into the person you
hope to become. In other words, Bennington does not
expect students to conform, but to transform.
(Bennington)

Within this traditional liberal arts framework, the
Wellesley curriculum is dynamic and responsive to social
change and new fields of study. The dramatic
expansion of information of the last decades has led to
an increasingly interdisciplinary course of study.
(Wellesley)

This seems to me, at least, a liberal type of education (educationally liberal, not political, of course). Students are exposed to different viewpoints, ideas, and so on. Their views are challenged. They're not indoctrinated, a la Patrick Henry College, to go directly to Washington to become power drones.

I see a startlingly large difference there. Do you?

Also, looking closely at points about the dating policy at Antioch, I see some pretty good ideas there. Nothing wrong with reinforcing some common-sense ideas. What is your comparison with PHC's policy? Could you explain?

Not a snark--I'm pretty interested.
posted by John of Michigan at 11:38 AM on June 28, 2005


Somehow 'making sure that sex is consensual', even when stated so awkwardly, doesn't seem nearly as bad as RAs that email you about 'dress code violations' and rules against holding hands while standing still [as opposed to holding hands while walking.] I rather expect that Antioch doesn't have RAs barging into peoples' bedrooms or walking up to couples making out, making sure that the consent rules have been followed. Unless you can provide links to the contrary, I suspect that those rules mostly come into play when someone claims that they've been raped. Forgive me if I can't really see Antioch's policies as restrictive and intrusive in the way Patrick Henry's policies are.

Furthermore, while I bet that under a liberal presidency there'd be a drop in the number of Patrick Henry White House interns, I don't think you'd see a commensurate rise in the schools pardonyou? seems to consider super-liberal. Importantly, none of those schools is, as far as I know, particularly known for focusing on government, politics, foreign policy, or whatever, so I doubt you'd have hundreds of Oberlin students looking to be interns. Those schools also aren't known for having government connections, and the schools' administrations aren't going to be pushing students into internships the way Patrick Henry does. I suspect you'd see lots of interns from top-tier schools... you know, Ivies, UChicago, Hopkins, Georgetown, places like that. That's the thing, you see - I haven't heard much about dastardly "liberal" homeschooling their kids and making sure they attend only the most liberal of schools, insulated from all conservatives, so that they can eventually get a job in DC. The left hasn't shown much interest into that kind of thing, and they don't have a pooI of ideological warriors to draw on, so don't think that it's right to assume that the left's actions would mirror those of the right.
posted by ubersturm at 11:45 AM on June 28, 2005


COBRA! says : You know, the main thing I got from that article was a sort of pity for those kids. I mean, I'm sure a few of them will go places and fulfill their will to power. But most of 'em will smash headfirst into the real world, and that's going to be jarring as all fuck.

Ok, here's one for you - what happens in the (I know, unlikely) event that the GOP loses power? Let's just say the GOP finally f*cks things up to such a degree that it's obvious even to the Fox News-watchers. The Conservatives will try, unsuccessfully, to backpedal from the positions that they took over the years. Sure, some of the more moderate ones may be able to survive, but what of the Patrick Henry graduates? What will happen to them? Will they become bitter and disillusioned? Will they go on crime sprees and shoot up the place? Or will they just fade into oblivion?

I'm telling you, this is an excellent movie just waiting to happen.
posted by afroblanca at 11:47 AM on June 28, 2005


My comparison with PHC's policy is that geoff found it of much amusement that a college would require its students to follow a rigid set of guidelines for courtship and physical interaction. My point was that such interference isn't limited to conservative Christian schools.

If you don't see the absurdity in Antioch's policy -- the threat of expulsion if you don't stop and obtain clear verbal consent before moving from first to second base, for example, or the total inability to obtain valid consent when one party has been drinking -- I can't help you. I find it stilted, formal, PC meddling in an arena that a college has no business regulating.
posted by pardonyou? at 11:48 AM on June 28, 2005


Ben Adams . . . sent out a nine-page e-mail to the entire student body before the spring formal reminding the girls to dress modestly. “Lust is sin,” it said. “It is sin for you to tempt us. It is . . . unloving. Unsisterly. Un-Christlike.”

Looks like there's another virgin Ben charging up the ranks.
posted by Optimus Chyme at 11:56 AM on June 28, 2005


To me, homeschoolers always seemed not quite socially developed. I have fond memories of me and the chums realizing their parents fears by going up to them on testing days and asking, "You guys into bukkake/beastiality/DVDA?"

Because that's what social development is all about.

*rolls eyes*

Two sides, one coin. See mdn's post in this thread.
posted by weston at 11:56 AM on June 28, 2005


I think the sexual innuendo is well warrented.
From the Palace eunuchs of Imperial China to Constantius' eunuchs in the (declining) Roman Empire to the Junior anti-sex league, sexual deprivation & control has always been linked to intrigue and superego (for lack of a better word) control of the mind and political control.
And if you don't think sexual control is linked to politics or violence, you probably missed all the S&M going on in 1984.
/the book, not the year.
All that sexual energy and emotion gets driven into politics and intrigue and social acceptance/exclusion. I think COBRA! is right about a shitstorm waiting to happen.
posted by Smedleyman at 11:57 AM on June 28, 2005


Pardonyou?, it's called in loco parentis--in the place of parents. Granted, college students are adults, but, not quite. Nineteen-year-old bags of testosterone (and estrogen, for that matter) need to be taught the rules of what a responsible adult does and does not do. Stilted? Sure. Formal? Absolutely. But so is learning how to drive a car and write a five-paragraph essay for the first time.

And PC meddling? Is it just me or does everyone think of the early- to mid-1990s whenever they hear the term "PC." Maybe it is just me . . . .
posted by John of Michigan at 12:00 PM on June 28, 2005


Pardonyou?, it's called in loco parentis--in the place of parents. Granted, college students are adults, but, not quite. Nineteen-year-old bags of testosterone (and estrogen, for that matter) need to be taught the rules of what a responsible adult does and does not do. Stilted? Sure. Formal? Absolutely. But so is learning how to drive a car and write a five-paragraph essay for the first time.

And PC meddling? Is it just me or does everyone think of the early- to mid-1990s whenever they hear the term "PC." Maybe it is just me . . . .
posted by John of Michigan at 12:00 PM on June 28, 2005


Thank you delmoi.
Actually, I did read the article (I was baiting, I must admit.) [shame on me]

So, is the Left Behind series part of required readings? Must students pledge allegiance to the Bush each day? Are certain bumper stickers verboten on student vehicles?

I got the sense of what tiddles was saying about right you-are-pardoned. Spelling and semantics without addressing the core of the issue fits perfectly with my statement. But then, you don't like what the post is about either so it's OK to attack the messenger, huh?
posted by nofundy at 12:02 PM on June 28, 2005


pardonyou?: "But can we really disregard reality so easily? Have you ever met a conservative Oberlin or Antioch grad? (I haven't).
"


Conservatives do go to these schools. I used to participate in the ecumenical church group in college, and quite a few members of the group could be considered conservative. True, there was only one person in the group that would have fit in at Patrick Henry (she was Missouri Synod Lutheran), but I am sure that the Evangelical bible group on campus probably had more. I also remember people supporting the Gulf War while I was there. Not a lot of people, of course, but they were there.
posted by eckeric at 12:03 PM on June 28, 2005


There appears to be a College Republicans chapter at Oberlin, although their web design-fu seems a bit lacking. I suppose the fact that they have to specify when they were "revived" says something about how common they are.
posted by COBRA! at 12:08 PM on June 28, 2005


Note, pardonyou?, that all of those proceedings happen only if one of the people involved in sex reports a violation of that code. It's very different from the kind of guidelines that PHC has; if the sets of rules were truly analogous, Antioch'd have people knocking on every closed door and walking in to make sure there's been consent. But the policy doesn't seem to indicate that they have any enforcers at all. They simply have a policy saying "sex should be consensual, here are ways you can be sure it's consensual, and if you feel you've been sexually violated, here's what to do and where to go." [And yeah, I do think that the addition of alcohol and other drugs can make the issue of consent more difficult - I wouldn't say it's impossible for there to be consent, but it's certainly a touchier issue. People do sometimes do things that they wouldn't otherwise want to do when under the influence.] Furthermore, I don't see anywhere on the linked page where it says something like "if you haven't obtained consent before kissing her, you'll be expelled." I see a list of possible consequences and actions, which are presumably assigned on a case to case basis. Most colleges will take disciplinary action when accusations of sexual assault happen, so I'm not sure how that's ultra liberal. Again, if you have links to prove that expulsion has been used for cases short of outright rape, do bring them up. Otherwise, it seems to me you're jumping on the admittedly stilted way they put things and making a mountain out of a molehill.

PHC actually has people watching out for dress code violations, "taking the boy aside" and interfering when they think couples have gotten too close, and stuff like that. Want sex? You have to go through a courtship period and a marriage first. From Antioch's policy, it sounds like they want to make sure that students are in consensual relationships, they lay out some guidelines, and if a student feels like they've been violated, they themselves can go complain. If you can't see the huge difference between those policies, well, I can't help you, man.
posted by ubersturm at 12:14 PM on June 28, 2005


Patrick Henry's 'Notice of Nondiscriminatory Policy'

"The College shall maintain its constitutional and statutory right to discriminate on the basis of religion."
posted by meehawl at 12:18 PM on June 28, 2005


...there is a MAJOR deficit of alternate viewpoints and critical thinking when it comes to Republican talking points.

And that is, I suspect, their major strength. The Democrats are all wishy-washy on every issue: every opinion or idea merits consideration. One party presents a rock, the other presents cotton candy.
posted by five fresh fish at 12:23 PM on June 28, 2005


But can they wear Abercrombie?
posted by gimonca at 12:25 PM on June 28, 2005


uberstrum, I wasn't defending PHC's policies. I think they're worse than Antioch's (my "red tape" comment notwithstanding). My point was just that while geoff seems fixated on PHC's sexual intrusiveness, sexual intrusiveness isn't limited to conservative Christian colleges. That's all.

And to this: "all of those proceedings happen only if one of the people involved in sex reports a violation of that code", that wouldn't provide me much comfort if I had to constantly be focused on trying to determine whether I was moving to a "new level," whether I had obtained the necessary verbal consent ("Gee, I think she told me I could remove her bra, or was that last night?"), whether the consent was sufficiently clear, and whether the three beers my date drank rendered her consent invalid.
posted by pardonyou? at 12:46 PM on June 28, 2005


We seem to be unhealthily obsessed with Evangelical Christian Colleges around here. I think the place is a bit screwy myself, but if people want to go there, that's nothing to me, quite frankly.
posted by jonmc at 12:50 PM on June 28, 2005


Back OT, it's odd that there aren't some hard-line lefty schools to, you know, balance out places like Patrick Henry.

Oh come on! Patrick Henry requires its students to commit in writing that they believe all non-christians spend eternity being consciously tormented for their lack of belief. They are specifically taught that earth was created in 7 days, despite empirical reality. While there are certainly schools where most students would be very left wing, this is a different level of commitment. To find an equivalent on the left, you'd need to locate a school where students agreed in writing that george bush planned 9/11 or something. We're not just talking about normal conservative views, here.
posted by mdn at 12:52 PM on June 28, 2005


The only real similarity I've noticed between the far right and the far left is that both love to believe that they're under seige, and that their opposition is legion and hiding in the trees with knives in their teeth.
posted by jonmc at 12:57 PM on June 28, 2005


What happens to that Nondiscriminatory Policy once they start getting government money?
posted by absalom at 1:09 PM on June 28, 2005


Nah, our opposition is in the White House, and Congress and schools like these, and the media...

This isn't the equivalent of a Wellesley or Bennington or Oberlin--it's another Bob Jones.
posted by amberglow at 1:13 PM on June 28, 2005


Home schooling (and perhaps the establishment of conservative colleges?) happens basically because parents look at other parents and don't like the way they're raising their kids. The post contains it's own simple example:

how do they have fun without binge drinking, cocaine and sex?


Well there you go.
posted by scheptech at 1:32 PM on June 28, 2005


meh. Home schooling, like neoconservative politics, and fundamentalist christianity, is about conscious preservation of cognitive dissonance by retreating from reality.
posted by stenseng at 1:38 PM on June 28, 2005


Wow stenseng, that's a nuanced view of home schooling, clearly representitive of reality.
posted by Snyder at 1:47 PM on June 28, 2005


meh. Home schooling, like neoconservative politics, and fundamentalist christianity, is about conscious preservation of cognitive dissonance by retreating from reality.

Well there you have it. Our armchair psychologist has pronounced that home-schooled kids suffer from a mental defect. I guess that means that we should round them up and re-educate them, no?
posted by thedevildancedlightly at 1:49 PM on June 28, 2005


And that is, I suspect, their major strength. The Democrats are all wishy-washy on every issue: every opinion or idea merits consideration. One party presents a rock, the other presents cotton candy.

Yeah, it's easy to have a strong point of view when you've already decided what the answers are and all you have to do is ignore/delete any information that doesn't fit in with the prescribed view.

People who actually think about things and choose to deal with complexity and multiple points of view can be frustrating to the blinkered oblivious, it's true.
posted by papercake at 1:57 PM on June 28, 2005


I for one would like to state clearly, my high school days were filled with foolish accounts of being a big dick -- of which I apologize. That is all.
posted by geoff. at 2:04 PM on June 28, 2005


Yeah, it's easy to have a strong point of view when you've already decided what the answers are and all you have to do is ignore/delete any information that doesn't fit in with the prescribed view.

People who actually think about things and choose to deal with complexity and multiple points of view can be frustrating to the blinkered oblivious, it's true.


In a way, aren't you proving your own point? Your statement that Republicans have "already decided what the answers are" and "ignore/delete any information that doesn't fit in with the prescribed view" in itself assumes what the answers are and doesn't "deal with complexity" by ignoring/deleting information suggesting that there are multiple viewpoints within both parties. Just sayin'.
posted by thedevildancedlightly at 2:14 PM on June 28, 2005


do you think in a liberal administration that students from Wellesley, Oberlin, etc., would be more likely to get internships? I do

Maybe. Though I'd expect the bias to be more towards Ivies and their compatriots than to Oberlin and Antioch, and more towards Haverford or Swarthmore than Antioch even within the realm of liberal-arts colleges.

Of course, you might have noticed the small detail that Harvard, Princeton, Oberlin, Haverford and the like are all world-class institutions of higher learning, with truly expert faculty at the top of their fields, and are filled to bursting with brilliant students, while Patrick Henry is, well, not. To put it mildly.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 2:16 PM on June 28, 2005


so, tddl, how was the spelling in the New Yorker article?
posted by mr.marx at 2:20 PM on June 28, 2005


so, tddl, how was the spelling in the New Yorker article?

Looked good to me. Are you going to add anything substantive to the thread, or just carry on the behavior that you seem to think is inappropriate?
posted by thedevildancedlightly at 2:25 PM on June 28, 2005


ROU, agreed, although it sounds like the students are fairly smart. According to the article, SAT scores are in the 1260-1440 range, which would place the school ahead of, say, Oberlin and Antioch, and in the ballpark with Harvard, Yale, and Princeton. FWIW (which is not much, I concede)
posted by pardonyou? at 2:30 PM on June 28, 2005


Of course, you might have noticed the small detail that Harvard, Princeton, Oberlin, Haverford and the like are all world-class institutions of higher learning, with truly expert faculty at the top of their fields, and are filled to bursting with brilliant students, while Patrick Henry is, well, not. To put it mildly.

Speaking of "ignore/delete any information that doesn't fit the prescribed view", do you have any facts to back up your assertion?

One anti-PHC site claims the average SAT at PHC is 1320. You can argue plenty about social adaption, but assuming that they are stupid is, well, ignorant in itself.

Average incoming SAT:
Antioch: 1120
Patrick Henry College: 1320
Oberlin: 1339
On preview: pardonyou? beat me to it.
posted by thedevildancedlightly at 2:33 PM on June 28, 2005


Of the school’s sixty-one graduates through the class of 2004, two have jobs in the White House; six are on the staffs of conservative members of Congress; eight are in federal agencies; and one helps Senator Rick Santorum, of Pennsylvania, and his wife, Karen, homeschool their six children. Two are at the F.B.I., and another worked for the Coalition Provisional Authority, in Iraq

So one person graduated from this college and became a nanny. But-- hey!-- it is Nanny for a senator's children.

The above list accounts for 20 of the 61 graduates. What do you want to bet at least another 20 or so of the graduates are now stay-at-home wives?
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 2:44 PM on June 28, 2005


"...hiding in the trees with knives in their teeth."
I only did that the one time, jonmc. Got my tonsils out the next day.

I'm having a tough time following the arguments here. We're not seriously asserting that what is good for students is to have limited viewpoints balanced by limited viewpoints in opposition are we?

...cause I'll go back up in the trees right now.
posted by Smedleyman at 2:52 PM on June 28, 2005


one helps Senator Rick Santorum, of Pennsylvania, and his wife, Karen, homeschool their six children...

...So one person graduated from this college and became a nanny.


If you are trying to say that that teachers are nothing more than glorified nannies then you are insulting every teacher in America.

We're not seriously asserting that what is good for students is to have limited viewpoints balanced by limited viewpoints in opposition are we?

I don't think anybody is arguing that. Some people argued that it's a unique part of the vast right-wing conspiracy to have special schools to train future leaders. The counter-argument was that there are plenty of other schools that very liberal students self-select into that reinforce that worldview. Hence, no conspiracy.

Then some people assumed that since the students were conservative they must be stupid and that students at the more "liberal" schools must be smarter. That was quickly corrected as well.
posted by thedevildancedlightly at 2:54 PM on June 28, 2005


I suspect it is not their incoming test scores that is a problem with this college:

Of course, you might have noticed the small detail that Harvard, Princeton, Oberlin, Haverford and the like are all world-class institutions of higher learning, with truly expert faculty at the top of their fields

That is the problem-- the faculty. Who is teaching at this school? What sort of professors would be attracted to teaching at this school?:

the professor, Jennifer Gruenke, who also has a Ph.D. from the University of Virginia, tells students that the earth was created in a week.


And what are they allowed to teach?:
The curriculum for the first two years follows a “Christian Classical” model—basically, Western Civ from a Biblical perspective.

This is in no way comparable to an education you would receive from an Ivy League school or even a state university, and future employers are bound to notice.

On Preview: Yes, you are right, the student in question is something more than a nanny, but what exactly? This college graduate "helps" homeschool 6 kids. I'm not sure I would exactly describe them as a teacher.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 2:58 PM on June 28, 2005


What do you want to bet at least another 20 or so of the graduates are now stay-at-home wives?

That doesn't speak well for the success of "Mr. Rove's clone army," does it?
posted by event at 2:58 PM on June 28, 2005


What do you want to bet at least another 20 or so of the graduates are now stay-at-home wives?

If that were even true it would be relevant... how? Stay-at-home parents are less good than other people? Less intelligent? Less worthy of respect? We should mock those who choose to raise their children themselves instead of hiring others to do it for them?
posted by thedevildancedlightly at 3:30 PM on June 28, 2005


No, we should pity those kids for not being exposed to the real world, in all its diversity. We should blame the parents for that.
posted by amberglow at 3:38 PM on June 28, 2005


You know, something was nagging at me, some sense of déjà vu reading about Patrick Henry. And then it came to me, the old Soviet Union's Party Schools (and definitely not the good kind of "party"). Sound familiar?

Subjects included philosophical and social science topics: the scientific-technical revolution, economics, the theory of proletarian internationalism, communist morality, and socialist democracy

The Higher Party School and the Academy of Social Sciences in Moscow were staffed with instructors attached to the CPSU Central Committee departments ... These schools trained officials to enter the party elite at the all-union level.

Willingness to participate in party courses at the lowest level could indicate an aspiration to join the party or ensure advancement from candidate status to that of full member. Once in the party, participation in training courses demonstrated a desire to enter into full-time, salaried party work. Indeed, such coursework was a prerequisite for this kind of a career. Party training also created an in-group consciousness among those who attended courses.
posted by meehawl at 3:49 PM on June 28, 2005


> meh. Home schooling, like neoconservative politics, and fundamentalist christianity,
> is about conscious preservation of cognitive dissonance by retreating from reality.

That doesn't parse to what you wanted to say. Cognitive dissonance is aversive; one retreats from reality to avoid or end dissonance, not preserve it. Maybe if you'd been homeschooled you would have picked that up before posting.
posted by jfuller at 4:41 PM on June 28, 2005


SLoG has successfully divined my intent despite my best efforts of obfuscation and confusion.

I'd written a bit noting their at best mediocre faculty, and lackluster course offerings, and that they do insist that faculty applicants have an MA... but then I went and made an inaccurate swipe at the students, which I ought not have done.

My point was that under any sane method of choice -- much less under a more liberal administration -- of course students from Oberlin or Antioch or Haverford or an Ivy would be favored over students from Patrick Henry, because Oberlin etc don't suck.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 5:13 PM on June 28, 2005


I wonder why some many people here keep lumping Antioch in with Haverford, Harvard, Oberlin etc. Everyone I know who went to Antioch thinks its one of the worst schools in the country.

The truth is, there are plenty of places where you can go and get a pretty bad education, but be surrounded by people who by and large agree with you politically(Brown springs to mind) These students seem to be getting at least an acceptable education in most ways, and if they're all going into politics they will have to learn to deal with people who disagree. I imagine these people are pretty well socialized on that point, they'd have to be to think they have any chance of success in the political world.

Don't complain because the people you oppose are well organized.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 5:44 PM on June 28, 2005


Someone mentioned Antioch earlier as a bastion of liberal whateverness, is all. It's generally a well-respected liberal arts school, if not seen as really up to Oberlin's or Haverford's level.

Personally, I'd suggest Reed or Evergreen or New College (Sarasota) as a (stridently) lefty counterpart to something like Patrick Henry.

Or, more accurately, someplace like Hillsdale might be the conservative counterpart to Oberlin et al, or someplace like Wheaton (IL) the Christian counterpart. PH seems to be drinking the same koolaid as Liberty and Bob Jones, not competing in the same market as Wheaton.

I can't see why anyone would think that the education they'd get at Patrick Henry would be "acceptable" as compared to "bad" at Brown. That's just daft.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 6:10 PM on June 28, 2005


If that were even true it would be relevant... how? Stay-at-home parents are less good than other people? Less intelligent? Less worthy of respect? We should mock those who choose to raise their children themselves instead of hiring others to do it for them?
posted by thedevildancedlightly at 6:30 PM EST on June 28

It was not my intent to denigrate stay at home folks-- I was one myself for 10 years. The discussion was what happens to these kids after graduating. Aside from the few that got government jobs, what happened to the rest? After reading the article where one girl is planning to get married and be a stay-at-home mom, I surmised that this is probably the goal of most female graduates. I could be wrong. However since the thrust of their whole education is that conservative and biblically-approved lifestyles are the best, I doubt too many female students are aspiring to become lawyers and doctors.

As for the rest, I assume it must be much like graduating from Bob Jones University. There will be some businesses that are not too concerned about what the degree is in, but will heartily welcome any Evangelical Christian College graduate. Still it would be interesting to see a cost/benefit analysis. The cost of attaining a degree from Patrick Henry vs. other colleges in relation to the average alumni salary.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 6:51 PM on June 28, 2005


As someone who was homeschooled, and is on pretty much the opposite of these fundies, I feel obligated to put a word in.

I was homeschooled from 6th grade on. My parents are neither religious nor conservative, and they weren't trying to shelter me or manipulate my world view. I was homeschooled for academic reasons. I wasn't stuck in the house all day at all. I had a large group of friends I hung out with, and I was anything but sheltered. People are always surprised when they find out that I was homeschooled, since they tend to think homeschoolers are all timid shut-ins.

I'm not saying that the out-of-touch fundy-type homeschoolers don't exist. I met some of them in college. I'm not defending what their parents did to them. They have had all traces of reality squeezed out of them. They're somewhat like Ignatius Reilly, only more right-wing. And they tend to have some seriously fucked up political views.

Those are the people whose parents homeschooled them for religious, or, worse, political reasons. It's terrible to use a child like that---but there are other reasons, too. I've met other homeschoolers who aren't like that at all. They're not as easy to spot, and they don't tend to get as much press, but they are around. And they can be perfectly normal people.

So don't dismiss us all on account of our most vocal subset. They're just pathological cases.
posted by obvious at 8:43 PM on June 28, 2005


Is it fair to say that some part of the motivation for home-schooling is fear? That sounds kind of harsh, but I will admit to my stereotype of HS parents as wanting an unordinate amount of control over their kid's environment.

Maybe I'd suck as a parent, but so much of development seems to be "make your own mistakes and learn from them." And so much of education seems to be peripheral (speaking as a teacher) e.g., learning to play with strangers, learning to make friends, learning to deal with people who don't look, act, or think like you.

I appreciate obvious' point, and I'm just trying to honestly cop to my own stereotypes. Please feel free to blow them apart.
posted by bardic at 9:29 PM on June 28, 2005


Is it fair to say that some part of the motivation for home-schooling is fear?

No.

...I will admit to my stereotype of HS parents as wanting an unordinate amount of control over their kid's environment.

Why is it assumed that it's the natural order of things that a child should go to school outside of the home? Schools as they are in the U.S. are a creation of humans for a certain goal, home schooling is simply a different method, sometimes because the goal is similar, but the parents and child dispute the effectivess of the particular school, or because the parents and child disagree with the schools goal. It's simply a method, not one with a neccessairly intrinsicly different motivation.

And so much of education seems to be peripheral (speaking as a teacher) e.g., learning to play with strangers, learning to make friends, learning to deal with people who don't look, act, or think like you.

School is not the only place to do this.

And as a teacher, I imagine you can see the value in one-on-one instruction.
posted by Snyder at 10:40 PM on June 28, 2005


Absolutely--it's the best part of my job (getting to spend individual time with students). But I still can't imagine that for all the pros, a big con would be not gaining a day-to-day experience of social interaction on a large scale. And frankly, how many parents can afford to home-school? Each to his own, and despite the fact that I had some pretty shitty experiences in public K-8 (private school for 9-12), it's really a part of our democracy. There are many reasons Jefferson wanted to establish a public school system. In addition to the level playing field (I know, it doesn't always work that way for various reasons, but it's a damn fine ideal) there's a lot to be said for all the non-academic stuff that goes along with a school institution--clubs, newspapers, year book, sports, etc. Again, I'm only offering my own perspective. I think the impulse to home-school is wierd. If the schools in my area were really bad, I guess that would be a reason, but I just feel as if I'd be depriving my kid of so much.
posted by bardic at 12:51 AM on June 29, 2005


Having both taught and participated in home-schooling, I can vouch that it is far more difficult to do a good job home-schooling than it is to teach in a public school, and that is with training in being a teacher.

I have grave doubts that many parents are capable of an excellent job of homeschooling. I expect there is a large number of homeschooling failures, in terms of the child learning a wide variety of facts and ideas, and pursuing excellence in his or her preferred interests.
posted by five fresh fish at 2:00 AM on June 29, 2005


pardonyou: My point was just that while geoff seems fixated on PHC's sexual intrusiveness, sexual intrusiveness isn't limited to conservative Christian colleges. That's all.

But his point is that your example was not an illustration of sexual intrusiveness. I don't think you can reasonably disagree with that: Antioch is not intruding, regardless your worries of going to far. Sorry for all the italics.

stenseng: Home schooling, like neoconservative politics, and fundamentalist christianity, is about conscious preservation of cognitive dissonance by retreating from reality.

Certainly true for the most socially conservative religionists. The world is simply not going to go the direction they want. It will be destroyed before they can assert such absolute control.

Papercake: Yeah, it's easy to have a strong point of view when you've already decided what the answers are and all you have to do is ignore/delete any information that doesn't fit in with the prescribed view.

People who actually think about things and choose to deal with complexity and multiple points of view can be frustrating to the blinkered oblivious, it's true.


And your point is what, pray tell? The Dems strength is its biggest weakness. By not fixing on an answer, it has no answer.

SLoG: This is in no way comparable to an education you would receive from an Ivy League school or even a state university, and future employers are bound to notice.

Not if the future employer is a staunch religious conservative. Consider it the DeVry Institute of religious conservatism.

TDDL: We should mock those who choose to raise their children themselves instead of hiring others to do it for them?

Nope, not if they're happy! I should hope that no one disagrees with that.

SLoG: The cost of attaining a degree from Patrick Henry vs. other colleges in relation to the average alumni salary.

Is irrelevent. The kids aren't paying for it, the parents are. If the parent's goal is that their children have bigger incomes than they themselves have, then the measure would be generation-1 salary vs. generation-2 salary.

If the parent's goal is that their children be happier than they themselves, it would again require a different measurement. The cost of attaining the degree may have no relation to judging the success of the outcome.

Especially so in those cases of religious or political goals.
posted by five fresh fish at 2:01 AM on June 29, 2005


I don't think you can reasonably disagree with that: Antioch is not intruding, regardless your worries of going to far.

Oh, I think I can reasonably disagree with that. I think reasonable people can be outraged that a college would try to govern private sexual conduct through its disciplinary system (and this goes way beyond consent -- consent can be manifest in many forms without having a school-mandated procedure). In fact, I'm surprised more people aren't outraged. Can we agree to disagree without you claiming that my criticism isn't even reasonable?
posted by pardonyou? at 7:58 AM on June 29, 2005


Slightly OT, but in a similar vein here's a summer camp that actively promotes atheism in today's NYT. Christians hardly have the market cornered, it seems.
posted by thedevildancedlightly at 10:07 AM on June 29, 2005


Of course we can agree to disagree. 'nuff said.
posted by five fresh fish at 6:47 PM on June 29, 2005


I'm willing to bet that Christian camps far outnumber atheistic ones. Nice try though.
posted by bardic at 6:55 PM on June 29, 2005


Uh-huh. And Christians far outnumber atheists in the USA. Nice try, though.
posted by five fresh fish at 8:46 PM on June 29, 2005


I drive past PHC on the route to my nearest grocery store. It fills me with a sense of impotent rage every time I see it. That is all.
posted by kcds at 5:43 AM on June 30, 2005


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