It’s back-to-school time for college students.
Many parents have been clearing the shelves of Target and IKEA and are loading the items into their minivan right this moment for the monumental dorm room drop-off. Upon the beloved kids’ arrival at school, they will be greeted by someone who seems deceptively helpful.
For every on-campus housing floor or building, there is someone known as a residential assistant. This person oversees, counsels, and coordinates events to help students living on campus socialize and build a sense of community with their neighbors.
Most RAs are there for the free housing and generally have an interest in helping people. But the job requires more than just checking on the residents from time to time. At many universities, these people put on programs for the residents — and those programs are where students receive their introduction to the leftist indoctrination they will face over the next four years.
One such program has made the news recently. Known as “#StopWhitePeople2K16,” the program at the State University of New York’s Binghamton campus encourages RAs to engage students in difficult conversations about “understanding diversity, privilege, and the society we function within.”
But this program is hardly unique. At many campuses across the country, students are bombarded with flyers slipped under their door that offer free ice cream and discussion of diversity and oppression.
When I was an RA, I was told once to work on an event known as the "Tunnel of Oppression."
Promoted heavily as an interactive theater event, the Tunnel of Oppression invites students to walk from room to room, where they see student actors pretending to be oppressed. The various scenes depict students being bullied and oppressed about race, class, body image, gender identification, or religion. Others deal with rape and domestic abuse.
It is disturbing propaganda about the perceived progressive reality of campus life — and it is now on almost every checklist of progressive programs RAs must hold for their residents.
When I was an RA, I did my job and produced the events, but I added a twist. For instance, when it came time to do a program to "teach residents a skill," many RAs taught the evils of meat by holding a program on vegetarian cooking. I took my residents to the gun range and taught them marksmanship.
When other RAs organized "diversity" programs such as "interracial coffee hours" to encourage students to talk about racism over coffee, I organized a "diversity in faith" program, in which I encouraged residents to go with me to a new religious denomination every Sunday.
Other RAs frequently organized movie nights showing Michael Moore's "Bowling for Columbine." And their bulletin boards in dorm hallways would feature narratives about offensive and inclusive language.
When it came time to organize events to encourage civic awareness, I organized voter registration, encouraged residents to participate in rallies to support our military — and organized preparation of care packages to send to our troops in Iraq and Afghanistan.
These programs are voluntary for students, but RAs certainly encourage them to attend.
Would it be great if RAs could keep to themselves and didn't have to organize ridiculous programs built around indoctrination? Yes — but sadly, residential housing staff want to make sure the RAs check the boxes of being involved and politically correct.
The message for parents and students is this: Question everything and everyone, from the most credentialed professor to the RA.
So many students now start college with the negative premise of oppression and negativity about America — and it's up to you to decide whether they are on the right side of the debate.