By David Horowitz–FrontPageMagazine.com–03/17/05
The Colorado press has weighed in on the Colorado exam caper and — as usual — substituted its anti-student, anti-academic freedom, editorial bias for what should have been straightforward reporting. According to the Denver Post and the Greeley Tribune, we retracted our story about an exam in Colorado that was an example of indoctrination since it required students to explain that America’s liberation of Iraq was a criminal action. Even the exam question supplied by the University adminsitration (which may not be the actual exam question) confirms what we said. And that’s what I said in my “correction” of our story.
But this is the way the AP reported the story in the Denver Post: “Conservative firedbrand David Horowitz has conceded that he misrepresented a University of Northern Colorado student’s complaint against her instructor.” No I didn’t. I conceded that the student may have misrepresented the facts, in particular the fact that she go an “F” and that the actual question was not required, even though the answer was required. I also pointed out these were minor and irrelevant errors, since her main claim and ours was that she was required in answering the question to explain why America had committed a criminal act in liberating Iraq and thus that the President was a war criminal.
The University adminsitration has been dishonest throughout this process and may be lying even in these claims. The student says that when she filed her appeal over the exam to the university administration, the professor in question whose name is Robert Dunkley, supplied a different question than the original one. Neither the professor nor the administration has supplied a copy of the original exam, which is suspicious on its face (don’t expect the AP to ask questions about this). This was a course in criminology and specifically the behavior of individuals not states, which makes the student’s claim that the original question was “Explain Why George Bush Is A War Criminal” more plausible than the question Dunkley has now supplied.
If you look at the question as supplied by Dunkley it is somewhat incoherent as though it had been tampered with. But even so, the question the administration has now supplied confirms the student’s claim and confirms that we were right: Dunkley and UNC administered an exam with a question that was pure political indoctrination more approriate to the University of Havana than to an American school.
Note that both papers contacted Dunkley but not us, just as the only other report on this story by InsideHigherEd.com interviewed an administration spokesman but did not call us to check our response to her claims before running their story.
To sum up this end of the tale: we admitted two minor points. We did not know whether the student got an “F” as she claimed and we did not know whether the question itself was required (as opposed to the answer). I made a mistake from ignorance here and said we had not “checked” these points. In fact, we could not check them because the University Administration would not release them to us. This hasn’t prevented Dunkley of accusing me of not researching the facts. How could I have researched the facts — aside from taking the student’s testimony at face value when 1) Dunkley has destroyed (or claims to have destroyed) the exam in question and the university has withheld the facts for more than a year and released only its version to the sources it chooses — hostile media as it happens.
Now, consider the way the same media treat the lies from MediaMatters about this story: They simply report the MediaMatters claims about us as though they were true. But Media Matters claimed (actually insinuated) that we invented the student, the professor and the exam question. MediaMatters has yet to retract these claims even though there is no one in the universe who can believe them anymore.
So we were punished for being honest, and MediaMatters is rewarded for lying. This will not defer us from our mission to restore decency and educational standards to schools in Colorado and elsewhere, but it doesn’t make the task any easier.
It is interesting how fiercely a press which thinks of itself as “liberal” (while adamantly denying that it is) will go to protect a corrupt system that abuses students — both liberal and conservative — by administering exams with questions that have only one correct answer to questions that are political and controversial. Let’s not forget that this was supposed be a course in criminology and not in anti-war politics. Shame on the University of Northern Colorado, shame on Professor Dunkley, shame on the AP and the Greeley Tribune. This is disgraceful stuff and shows why our colleges are in as bad a state as they are.