People are usually more comfortable and positive of those who are different from themselves after they have spent time with such people.
The Pew Research Center has researched diversity issues and found that people say they are more comfortable after they interact with people of different racial and ethnic backgrounds.
Seven countries were surveyed on favorability of migrants and refugees last summer. The study looked at interactions with people of racial or ethnic groups different from one’s own, resulting in less negative feelings toward refugees and migrants. It also found that those who interact with people of other religious groups have more positive opinions of them.
In 1961, President John F. Kennedy signed an executive order that created Affirmative Action. Part of the idea was to create more diversity.
Dr. Jerry Bergman, an adjunct associate professor at Medical University of Ohio, points out that registered Democrats and Republicans are roughly equal in the nation. But Bergman discovered “an examination of over 150 departments and upper-level administrations at 32 elite colleges by the Center for the Study of Popular Culture found that nationally the ratio of registered Democrats to registered Republicans was more than 10 to 1 (1,397 Democrats compared to 134 Republicans). Not a single department at any of the 32 schools even remotely approached parity.”
Bergman said the closest any school came was Northwestern University, where 80% of faculty were registered Democrats and 20% registered Republicans. He pointed out that the researchers could not identify a single Republican on the faculty at Williams, Oberlin, MIT or Haverford College.
It’s not a new problem. He said the ratio of liberal to conservative professors has profoundly changed from 4 to 1 a few years ago to 17 to 1 today.
Since almost everyone agrees that college and the workplace are better through diversity, shouldn’t those attitudes carry over into political thinking, especially on college campuses? In fact, college campuses are supposed to be where learning is the primary purpose. Shouldn’t they also reflect diversity of thought? That should be a given.
It’s time for colleges to reflect the political thoughts of all people, especially when about half the population is hardly represented among the nation’s professors and administrators.