Dartmouth's Daily Blog
News, commentary, criticism and praise for the College on the Hill, enlivened with history, culture and travel when we feel so moved.
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A Refutation of Intolerance
I have opined before in the pages of The Dartmouth, the daily student newspaper, about far-left elitists masquerading as intellectuals. In a column entitled Elitism, Not Intellectualism, I attempted to identify the primary targets of this elitism, namely America, the American people, and religion.
The last of these targets was the misguided mark of a column in today’s D, See You in Hell. In this column Ms. Stonehill excoriates a student who, in response to an assignment to read and analyze the biblical account of creation in Genesis, supported his analysis with biblical context (gasp!). Indeed the author, in a confusing attempt at an ad hominem attack, writes that this student was a “self-professed priest-in-training,” as if this reveals some fatal character flaw.
To be clear, this was not a Biology class in which the theory of evolution was denied based on scripture. This was an assignment about creation in Genesis, in which a student considered the book by expanding the range of intra-textual analysis, looking at other parts of the Bible and perhaps the text as a whole.
The column goes on to opine that “religious zeal is antithetical to academic learning.” Familiarity with the history of science and philosophy would tend towards disagreement. From Kepler to Descartes and Mendel to Newton, religion has been a primary motivator of academic thought. Throughout history it has been intolerance, not attention to the word of G-d, that has stifled academic thought.
Certainly Ms. Stonehill should be afforded the opportunity to opine, though unfortunately she does not wish to extend this same tolerance to others. For it is precisely the diversity of ideas that allows all of us to find, in J.S. Mill’s language, a more complete truth, higher truth, or even simply new purchase on ideas we already hold to be right. Rather than denouncing religion, or indeed any other perspective, we should denounce instead the brand of intolerance that attempts to silence or denigrate others by castigating them as inferior. This is profoundly elitist and not at all intellectual.
August 14, 2013
Breaking: Of Crips and Bloods and Memories of Ghetto Parties
History repeats itself, first as tragedy and then as farce, or sometimes it just repeats itself. From the New York Times on November 30, 1998: At Dartmouth College, white students at a ”ghetto party” dressed…
June 25, 2013
Dean of the College Charlotte Johnson’s War on Students Part (2/2)
Part 1, Part 2 Today’s post again recounts the events that befell the Freshman. However, the content of the Hanover Police department report reproduced in this space yesterday is supplemented by information from my own…
October 18, 2009
When Love Beckoned in 52nd Street
We were at San Francisco’s BIX last evening, enjoying prosecco, cheese, and a bit of music. A full year of inhabitation in Northern California has unraveled to me no decent venue for proper lounging, but…
October 9, 2009
D Afraid of a Little Competish
So our colleague and Dartblog writer Joe Asch informed me that the D has rejected our cunning advertising campaign. Uh-oh. The Dartmouth is widely known as a breeding ground for instant New York Times successes,…
September 4, 2009
How Regents Should Reign
As Dartmouth alumni proceed through the legal hoops necessary to defuse a Board-packing plan—which put in unhappy desuetude an historic 1891 Agreement between alumni and the College guaranteeing a half-democratically-elected Board of Trustees—it strikes one…
August 29, 2009
Election Reform Study Committee
If you are an alum of the College on the Hill, you may have received a number of e-mails of late beseeching your input for a new arm of the College’s Alumni Control Apparatus called…
- The Dartmouth College Case
- 2007 Trustee Election
- Dartmouth Constitution
- Sunday Morning Sinatra
- The Indian Wars
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