Hopefully the “Koch” article in the Aug. 2 edition will either reignite or foster a new civil, thoughtful debate over ideological diversity in faculties and professional publications related to higher-education institutions. Since the 1960s there has been a marked ideological shift to the left. One survey suggested that over 90 percent of faculty support political candidates on the left. Faculty hiring practices greatly favor those who are on the left. This trend is reflected also in professional publications, where writers not “pollitically correct,” generally more moderate or conservative ones are, by and large, denied a forum. Support for LGBT and related ideological issues, for example, are favored, but traditional family and morality ones are so often excluded.
Private universities are and should be free to maintain or even foster whatever positions they wish. It is time, though, for the University of Utah and other public higher-education institutions to move toward a balance of views, particularly in the humanities and social sciences. There should eventually be, in faculty composition, as many moderates and conservatives as liberals. Professional publications should reflect moderate or conservative values as well as liberal ones. Perhaps the Koch donation will help foster this trend.