The story was picked up by a large number of blogs. They seemed to compete to see who could write the most extreme headline. Here are just a few examples.
- Indoctrination At Delaware
- U of Delaware student indoctrination teaches that all white people are racist
- University of Delaware Requires Students to Undergo Ideological Reeducation
- The U. Of Delaware: Made In North Korea
- University of Delaware's Orwellian system
- University of Delaware: No Free Thoughts Allowed
- Welcome to the University of Delaware. Check Your Brain at the Door.
- University of Delaware indoctrinates dorm residents in mandatory anti white dogma
- University of Delaware Operating Student Thought-Reform Program
- Intellectual Cancer: Political Indoctrination At The University Of Delaware
- Is the University of Delaware Violating the Federal Law on Human Subject Research?
- Ideological Reeducation Camps at University of Delaware
- "Mandatory" "Treatment" of University of Delaware Students
The University of Delaware is one of the worst brainwashing institutions in America.And:
Totalitarian socialist liberals have taken completely over. Time to withdrawal [sic] the children and your tuition payment, and end any Government funding the school receives. I’m serious.I know my approach to blogging is usually meant to be one of moderation and calm reflection, but what a load of crap.
Did no one think to check with the University about this? Doesn't this sound so extreme as to be highly unlikely? Is it really a good idea to simply and uncritically accept the judgment of some web-based outfit?
I was most disappointed in the News Journal, which posted an AP version of the story which only quoted from the FIRE account and made no attempt to check with the University or to verify whether of not the FIRE report was accurate.
What is worse is the headline the News Journal used: Civil rights group rips UD dorm policy.
Civil rights group? Please.
I took some time to check out the UD web site this evening. The University has responded to FIRE (rather politely, I thought) and addressed the issue in a posting linked from their front page.
The University explains that the program is not, in fact, mandatory.
The program is designed to encourage students to think about and to consider a number of issues, but all make their own decisions about the outcome of this reflection. FIRE’s assertion that students are told what to think is inaccurate. In common with FIRE, our institution values free speech, active voice, and open dialogue. We believe that students learn and grow in part by engaging in significant discussions on both sides of the classroom door.The University does note some problems with the program. They express a desire to make improvements and thank FIRE for their interest and input. But they take exception with the idea that UD students can be "indoctrinated."
You have examined many internal and public documents in your search for concerns. I invite you to explore our web site more fully to get a better picture of the capacity of a University of Delaware student. You will find that they are highly intelligent and capable to assert their viewpoints and to face challenges from a variety of areas. Our students are fully able to encounter multiple values and perspectives and remain true to their own identity.An interesting notion, this idea of encountering "multiple values and perspectives." Maybe when we report on these sorts of issues we should open ourselves up to other viewpoints instead of just echoing back what someone else wrote.
I'm not just speaking to the right-leaning among the bloggers, by the way. Some of the left-handed writers are just as guilty of this sort of thing too.
Surely we can all do better than simply repeating whatever line our particular party has put out?