12/23/2004

'Liberal bias' targeted by college group

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (AP) -- Conservatives want to enlist legislators in their battle against what they say is liberal bias at state universities.

Students for Academic Freedom will ask lawmakers to pass legislation during the 2005 session to protect students from what it sees as harassment or discrimination based on political beliefs, said the group's founder, conservative intellectual David Horowitz.

The group plans to push its 'academic bill of rights' in about 20 states in the coming year, Horowitz told The Herald Times for a story today.

The document, which Horowitz wrote, espouses intellectual diversity and independent thought. Horowitz said it was needed to protect conservative students from discrimination by leftist professors and to ensure that differing views were respected.

'It's not like we're objecting there's a leftist on the faculty, or 10,' he said. 'We're objecting there's no other point of view.'

Democratic state Rep. Matt Pierce of Bloomington said he believes most university faculty welcome debate in their classrooms.

'I don't buy into this idea that there's some kind of liberal elite brainwashing students all across America,' Pierce said.

Critics contend that the proposal opens the door to political meddling in higher education rather than closing it

'Liberal bias' targeted by college group

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