Conservative Colloquium

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Leftist Professor Spouts at A&M Freshman Convocation

Posted by Tony Listi on September 14, 2008

On August 24, Professor Kimberly Nichele Brown gave a most inappropriate speech at the Freshman Convocation that disparaged A&M and its founders:

[W]ho would have ever thought that Texas A&M would have a Hispanic female president? Not its founding fathers, that’s for sure.

According the the convocation website, the purpose of Freshman Convocation is “formally welcoming students to the beginning of their academic career at Texas A&M University.” It is supposed to “provide students with the opportunity to begin their college career in the same, significant, positive manner in which they end their college career.” Welcome to Texas A&M, a university with a horrible past! What a great way to welcome freshmen in a positive manner!

Apparently, a lack of the protein melanin in her teachers inhibited Professor Brown from learning:

Keep in mind that I didn’t have a course that focused on blacks until I went to college, which means that my entire education up to that point was predicated on my ability to decipher knowledge from people who looked nothing like me.

Oh no! Those enigmatic white people! Why won’t they get a tan so I can learn a little better?!

A little less than halfway through the speech she couldn’t help but bring up slavery and “keloided scars“. What the heck does slavery have to do with welcoming freshmen to campus?!

She went on to talk about liberal internationalist gobbledygook:

And if you learn only one humanistic lesson in college, let it be how to become a good global citizen.

Last time I checked there wasn’t a global state in which all human beings participate as citizens (thank God!). Why do liberal professors insist on teaching students things that are contrary to the obvious?

Apparently, in true Marxist fashion, Professor Brown longs for a return to the turbulent and violent college campuses of the 60s and 70s:

While there have been several events in recent history that might cause students to feel disenfranchised, I often suggest to them that one of the reasons for their disaffection might be their lack of exposure to the history of student protest in this country and abroad.

And last but certainly not least, she made a veiled accusation of racism against former students:

Texas A&M graduates are often ranked high for their loyalty, but low in their acceptance and awareness of cultural diversity.

Sorry, but not all cultures are created equal. Cultural relativism is a pernicious sham.

Many parents have already expressed their outrage over Brown’s speech and hopefully more will continue to do so.

Read the full text of the speech for yourself.

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6 Responses to “Leftist Professor Spouts at A&M Freshman Convocation”

  1. Karen Oneil said

    I think it is ironic that people from a second rate university in the most disgusting state of the Union should have a vigil for 9/11. You rednecks have no clue about 9/11. The terrorists would never attack texass because there is nothing there of any value. You are responsible for the horrible state our country finds itself. You have produced the most vile and incompetent president in American history and some of the most evil scumbags such as Karl Rove. I think it is regrettable that Lincoln did not allow you to leave the Union when we had that chance. How you can talk about conservatism when our country has been ruined by you WASPS.

  2. foospro86 said

    You have no idea what you are talking about. You certainly don’t know me. Seems like you are just having a stereotype frenzy.

    I’m a Catholic city boy who has never been accused of being a redneck or having much of a Southern accent. So eat your words.

    All this proves that you can’t talk political substance. You can’t help descending to wild personal, stereotypical attacks. I’d actually like to see you string some sentences together to form a coherent argument.

  3. conservativecounterpoint said

    Any idiot with a microphone can make a point. The only point this lady made was that she is living in the past instead of looking toward the future. Bottom line the lady is out of touch with reality and was only there to promote her personal agenda.

    BTW Karen- hate to tell you that Texas has numerous resources like a storage location for military weaponry, massive agricultural resources, and two of the nations largest ports in the country.

  4. an Aggie said

    Thanks for posting the full speech because I wanted a chance to read it. However, I really disagree with your assessment of her being a “Leftist Professor”. Nothing in her speech would warrant her to be labeled as such. In fact, you seem to take her quotes out of context. I did want to comment on a few things:

    1) “Keep in mind that I didn’t have a course that focused on blacks until I went to college, which means that my entire education up to that point was predicated on my ability to decipher knowledge from people who looked nothing like me.”

    I don’t know why you felt a need to attack this. She’s not saying that Caucasians are mysterious people that she didn’t know anything about. What she’s commenting on is the lack of Black Studies or related fields in American schools, and because of that, what she knew about African-American culture and histories when she arrived at college was derived from what she learned in other classes. As for the use of a picture of a slave with keloided scars, she’s talking about being a professor of Africana Studies. She even says, “I’ve looked at this photograph and thought, ‘How do I teach this?'” Her speech, just like every keynote Freshman Convocation speech given by a professor, is going to have parts about their field of study and what they are teaching.

    2) “And if you learn only one humanistic lesson in college, let it be how to become a good global citizen.”

    How is that “liberal internationalist gobbledygook”? The prior line in her speech says:

    “[College] is a safe space to decide what type of adult you plan to be; what type of mark you plan to leave on the world. And if you learn only one humanistic lesson in college, let it be how to become a good global citizen.”

    She is not pushing some agenda; she’s suggesting that students do something positive with their lives when they grow older and leave their mark on our world. Then you say, “Last time I checked there wasn’t a global state in which all human beings participate as citizens,” but there is a global community that every nation is a part of. She’s being hyperbolic and obviously speaking optimistically.

    3) “While there have been several events in recent history that might cause students to feel disenfranchised, I often suggest to them that one of the reasons for their disaffection might be their lack of exposure to the history of student protest in this country and abroad.”

    Again, you are taking this quote out of context. Right after she says that, in the same paragraph, she says:

    “I want to empower my students to challenge the world around them. I want to argue with inquisitive minds, not brainwash students into my way of thinking. I want to make students understand that they can make a difference.”

    She is not talking about students rioting on campuses, she is commenting on how she would like to see her students to develop their own ability to think critically about their world and not just accept things like apathetic sheep. It would seem odd that you would not encourage that, considering your obvious involvement with the Republican National Committee. Also, it’s ridiculous that you use the phrase, “in true Marxist fashion” because it just shows that you don’t really know a whole lot about Marxism.

    4) “Texas A&M graduates are often ranked high for their loyalty, but low in their acceptance and awareness of cultural diversity.”

    I don’t see what your problem with that is because it’s the truth. Texas A&M does work with recruiters often to seek what they feel that the graduates of this institution are having problems with and cultural understanding is one of the big problems. This isn’t a “veiled accusation of racism” because she is not accusing former students of being racist. You don’t have to agree with someone’s cultural customs to accept or be aware of them.

    5) “Sorry, but not all cultures are created equal. Cultural relativism is a pernicious sham.”

    This kind of goes back to what I just said. The idea of cultural relativism is that someone’s customs or views must be looked at in the context of their own culture. You seem, based on the above quote, to believe that everyone, whether they are from Spain, Sub-Sahara Africa or South Korea, should act and believe the same thing. Of course, this is something that I kind of figured came with the territory, given your prior postings.

  5. Texas Aggie '09 said

    I’m glad that someone else at this university is able to see what the author of this article is doing.

    I totally agree with “An Aggie” that the author is taking the quotes from the speech completely out of context to drive his biased argument. You obviously don’t like Dr. Brown, and that’s fine, but have some respect for her. (By the way…misconstruing her points and accusing her of being rascist is no way to show someone respect. Just keep that in mind.)

    Dr. Brown was asked to speak at Freshman Convocation to promote diversity (as the first black keynote speaker, the director of Africana Studies, etc.) and, in my opinion, she did just that. People are upset, but she did exactly what she was asked to do…

  6. foospro86 said

    An Aggie,
    1) Do you think it is impossible to learn from someone who looks nothing like you? Apparently, Prof. Brown thinks this is true. It is patently absurd. If she couldn’t learn anything from white people, by her logic, then I wouldn’t be able to learn anything from black people. Again, absurd. The ability of a student to learn has little to NOTHING to do with what a teacher looks like. Isn’t this common sense?!

    2)There are no citizens in a “community,” global or otherwise. Citizens make up a nation-state under a government. She implicitly wants a world state. I call that an agenda! The very fact that you say she is “speaking optimistically” merely demonstrates that you agree with her political agenda while trying to deny that it is an agenda.

    3) You think that the riots and student violence of the 60’s and 70’s have no relation to Marxism?? SDS and the Weather Underground were explicitly Marxist. They wanted a violent proletariat revolution. And seeing as Prof. Brown signed the petition supporting Bill Ayers, the former head of the Weather Underground, I think I’m on solid ground in my assertion. Student protest in the 60s and 70s had very little to do with critical thinking in the classroom.

    4) “Awareness” is a euphemism for stifling disagreement with the serious, philosophical differences of other cultures. Liberals think that because conservatives disagree that we are not “aware,” when in fact we disagree precisely because we are very much aware of what it is that we don’t like.

    5) Cultural relativism is merely a form of moral relativism, which is a denial of good and evil. By judging cultures by their own standards, every culture seems the best! Which is to say that no culture is better than another. That is NOT critical thinking. The alternative to cultural relativism is NOT “everyone should act and believe the same way.” It is: take a stand and actually make an evaluation one way or another! In reality, this is what everyone does anyway, though the Left postures a false neutrality.

    Texas Aggie ’09,
    If you had read my post carefully, you would have realized that I didn’t call her a racist. Who needs to show who some respect?
    Professor Brown’s views, as presented above, deserve no respect. Saying I should “have some respect for her” is merely a device to pressure me into keeping my views to myself. I’ve read her speech many times and heard enough liberal arguments to know exactly what she is saying and trying to say.
    The purpose of Freshman Convocation is to welcome students, not “promote diversity”! She did not fulfill that purpose and that is why people are upset. That is the main issue. My disagreements with her politics are secondary.

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