Yes, but what are you reading?
No, I was never there (university). It just means you start life three years behind the other fellow.
Rex Mottram, from Evelyn Waugh’s Brideshead Revisited.
In the past fortnight, I have been keeping up to date with American higher education. I am about to re-read Allan Bloom’s seminal The Closing of the American Mind – 30 years young! - and I wanted to stay up to snuff. These are some of the events that caught my eye.
· A colour-segregated graduation at an American university, specifically requested and organised by black students.
· A white lecturer suspended for – perforce – racism for suggesting that a ‘no whites on campus’ day at his university was itself racist.
· A college whose social sciences department required a mandatory course to be taken on the problem of whiteness.
· A ‘hate crime’ against black students which turned out to be a hoax perpetrated by black students. The Dean of the college involved said that although the crime was staged, nevertheless, it was useful in that it highlighted endemic racism on American campuses.
It makes your head spin, doesn’t it? One could almost detect a trend developing. It hasn’t happened in the UK yet, but the signs are in place that Britain will, as always, slavishly copy north American fads and fashions. There are a number of points to be made here.
This constant undermining of white students is not wholly being organized by blacks. In fact, whites are often at the forefront of these micro-insurrections, and for good reason. There are white people, always on the Liberal Left even when wearing Conservative disguise, who idolize blacks and blackness. It is often the more intelligent whites who indulge in the fetishisation, but not always. The phenomenon reminds me of bus journeys taken in the big town close to which I grew up.
As years went by, so more and more black families began to spill out of south London into Croydon and its satellites, one of which is my hometown. I was actually born in London, but I think of where I grew up as my hometown. Increasingly, sitting on the top deck of the bus, I would hear the urban patois favoured by black teenagers. After a while longer still, this infantile ebonic clucking was used as much by white kids as it was by black kids. The reason is mimicking.
White kids notice that black kids are, as it were, above the law. Certainly in the school room, as UK and US teachers have told me, teachers will happily punish a white child for an infringement a black kid would have remained unadmonished for. This situation is exactly replicated in the relationship between white ‘adult’ Liberals and blacks. It cannot be better encapsulated than by Tom Wolfe’s famous essay, Radical Chic: ThatParty at Lenny’s. Put coarsely, white Liberals have a hard-on for blacks.
The next point to examine is that Liberals are actuated by the belief that they are righting some terrible imagined wrong, and that this restoration of equality will benefit blacks at the expense of whites. This is, quite simply, a lie of epic proportions. Liberals don’t care about black people. They never have. They care about making you think along the right lines, and black people are useful pawns in this attacking game, as are Muslims, women, gays, transgender people, Uncle Tom Cobley and all. I wonder when blacks will realise they are being suckered? They didn’t realise that Obama was playing them, so it is possible they may never get it.
Our next consideration is what our culture terms ‘dumbing down’. Find, if you will, examination papers from around the 1950s. Next, look at those from the present day. I am not going to do everything for you. It is perfectly obvious that knowledge and wisdom, in the sense that Plato would have understood those pursuits, have been replaced by deliberately engineered stupidity masquerading as those inestimable qualities. Degrees are increasingly in non-subjects, and even subjects such as physics and mathematics are being re-tooled to be more inclusive. Maths is racist. Physics is sexist. You know the drill.
One of the great lies told on both sides of the Atlantic is that you need a degree to get a job. Even if it were true, for how long will employers be intent on interviewing a man with a degree in Gender Studies with a view to making him a storesman, or bank teller, or insurance salesman?
If I were north American, white, male and eighteen, I wouldn’t touch a university – or ‘college’, to use the parlance – with a shitty stick. What I would be doing is getting together with other north American, white males and organising reading groups, discussion seminars, alternative curricula. Universities have almost succumbed to the Gramscian imperative, the long march through the institutions intended to render those institutions as Marxist sausage factories. And so of what use are they to the seeker of wisdom? I don’t want to get all Eastern mystic on you, but seeking wisdom is pretty much what life is all about, once you get the food and shelter thing out of the way.
So, then. You meet up. You discuss books, real books, which you have all read. They are not called things like Towards a Post-Modern Hermeneutics of Queer, or The Transformative Censorship of Black Bodies, or Fuck Whitey in the Ear. They are called Meditations by Marcus Aurelius. They are called Discourse on the Method by René Descartes. They are called Beyond Good and Evil by Friedrich Nietzsche. They are called Apology by Plato. They are called Letters to Lucilius by Seneca. They are not written by fat black women posing as professors in Kill Whitey Studies. They are all written by white men. Every one of them. In three years, you will be so far ahead of the pansies who went to ‘uni’ to march about pretending to study utterly worthless subjects that you will just slay those people in the job market. And you will have the most precious of all gifts; not wisdom itself, but an indication of where that grail might lie.
So book your church hall. Call your friends. Arrange your first text discussion. Retake the concept of university from the blacks and the women and the liberals and the queers and the offended. They, incidentally, will not be invited. Take the advice Saint Augustine heard in a garden, uttered by a child.
Take up the book and read.