Re: Illusion of Intellectual Freedom

Dear Editor, The cruelest joke on Temple students is the administration’s illusion of intellectual freedom. But how can such a fundamental component of a university be illusory? Temple boasts of its diverse student body from

Dear Editor,

The cruelest joke on Temple students is the administration’s illusion of intellectual freedom. But how can such a fundamental component of a university be illusory?

Temple boasts of its diverse student body from all 50 states and the globe, proudly voicing that when looking out onto campus, they see the world. The administration’s narcissistic celebration of diverse racial and ethnic groups has ironically turned Temple into a spectacle, with one of the most bigoted, unilaterally racist, biased administrations in the country.

Regardless of its just-for-show mission, Temple doesn’t celebrate diversity of thought. Such a celebration is a threat to their version of “intellectual freedom,” which was ripped out from the 1960s radical agenda-for-change. Temple celebrates–as if it were some infantile competition to the finish line–the numbers of different skin colors and shapes of faces, for these two are easy to exploit. Unadulterated intellectual freedom, however, counters their elitist, so-called “diverse,” socially just curricula, which students should just accept because radicals know what is better for us, their intellectual prisoners.

However, what good is the celebration of diverse racial and ethnic groups when Temple suppresses–if not completely omits–intellectual freedom? Temple prioritizes racist values over the enrichment that, with no agenda, diversity of thought offers.

To Temple, we students are impressionable pawns, whose minds they systematically manipulate, exposing us to select resentment-driven aspects of America’s past and present, channeled through their personal biases, which they present as matter-of-fact. This is indoctrination and they aren’t embarrassed to promote and perpetuate it.

It is easy to fall victim to subtle indoctrination. I did. It wasn’t until months after I had founded the first version of Temple University Students for Intellectual Freedom that I realized I had unwittingly written within our mission Marxist lingo and Liberation Theology rhetoric, both of which are anti-American, anti-prosperity and progress, but very much champions of institutional strength and manipulation through ignorance and naiveté.

Temple radicals should not use our classrooms as their political platforms to dictate what and how we should think. The declaration on the Principles of Academic Freedom and Academic Tenure declared in 1915 that the teacher “should, above all, remember that his business is not to provide students with ready-made conclusions, but to train them to think for themselves, and to provide them access to those materials which they need if they are to think intelligently.”


Alvaro Watson, President

Students for Intellectual Freedom


  1. Alvaro, 

    Perhaps you should do some soul searching. Suggesting you can’t use language simply because your own opinions paint them “anti-American” leads me to believe that you have imprisoned your own mind. Perhaps you should allow yourself to practice intellectual freedom. No, its not the same kind of intellectual freedom you are talking about. Rather, it is the freedom to step outside the confides of your own opinion, ideology, ect and consider other opinions. I think your problem is that Temple University will never have a class on the philosophies of Alvaro Watson and even if they did it would only count for 3-4 semester hours once. You’re not always right and you will never be the only person who is right, nor will those who adhere to your philosophies. The sooner you realize this the better off you will be in both the real world and the academic one; in both life and your pursuit of knowledge.

  2. Alvaro,
    You certainly seem to state your case with lots of bombastic rhetoric, but few facts. I understand that your letter to the editor is indeed an opinion piece, but how can anyone agree with you if you don’t disclose your agenda? Insulting the entirety of Temple’s academic and administrative institutions as ‘bigoted’ and ‘racist’ is quite the exceptional accusation. Racist against whom? Why? How?
    Instead of being longwinded in your anger, why don’t you disclose more details of your organization? For instance, why don’t you honestly tell the audience that Students for Intellectual Freedom is an agenda-based conservative organization started by right-wing activist David Horowitz? That instead of true academic freedom, the organization seeks to promote cultural conservatism and ‘combat leftist indoctrination in academia’ (according to Horowitz)?
    It is a fact that many professors indeed ‘profess’ from certain points of view. In fact, I would argue that indeed everyone has a unique worldview (you certainly seem to).
    Therefore, it is just as much the student’s responsibility to separate fact from opinion in any life circumstance (academics included) as it is the institution’s responsibility to be equitable and charitable towards all points of view. This is academic freedom.
    Temple, like the majority (or possibly all) of accredited institutions, has policies against the stifling of academic freedom, and means of redress in place if you feel that you are somehow discriminated against on the basis of opinion. These policies are indeed far from ‘racist’ or ‘bigoted’, and perhaps you should look into them before you make these kind of sweeping, baseless accusations.
    Academic freedom is undoubtedly a right of all students and professors, and is a tenet of Western education in general. However, it is not a term exclusive to the advancement of conservative, right-wing ideology, which is what Students for Academic Freedom is actually all about.
    – Dan

  3. First, I think the commenter above intended to say that Alvaro should free himself from the “confines” of his own mind. Second, that rhetorical stupidity is so often spouted by those who have been freed of their parents’ minds by leftist teachers who are more than happy to play upon that post-adolescent minds of those willing to fund, via the taxpayer’s line of credit of course, the bureaucratic status quo truly bereft of any requirement there be any results.

    Has it ever occurred to anyone that teachers preach big government and aggrandized government simply in the selfish motivation that they themselves are sustained by that same self-perpetuating leviathan? I mean, no one is stupid enough to actually adhere to socialist ideology which has killed more people in the last century than the black death did at its height, other than those shifledd enough to expect something free or those sociopathic enough to want to effect radical redistribution.

    Third, I agree; freedom of thought is not the sole purview of the right wing. However, the clear leftist bias in every campus is so palpable that right wingers seem to be the ones noticing their relative lack of representation. So, I challenge both commentors to reveal their political bend, in the name of freeing our minds and transparency of course, as I noticed neither of you denied what Alvaro had to say, nut, true to form, simply chastised him for saying it and then appealed to the authority of the state in having already rid the world of the biases you so obviously hold.

  4. Well, I am glad you can speak for me and correct my 1 am error (perhaps if a professor were to do so to you it would be treasonous and anti-American?), I am sure you did not mean to suggest with poor comma use that Alvaro is a nut. Right? Right.

    Anyway, your “red scare” doctrine seeking to regulate the opinions of others in the name of freedom is absolutely hilarious. As is your misunderstanding of socialism. Of course, socialism is Stalinist communism. This is fact. Right?

    Perhaps you should compare living standards of Norway (arguably a democratic socialist nation) and of communities taken advantage of by developed capitalist countries seeking cheap labor. Of course, I am not saying I’m anti-capitalist, just that you’re not a critical thinker. I’m sure you wouldn’t mind citing a statistic for both the life consequences of socialism versus the black death. Well, maybe you will. Citations are liberal mind prisons, right?

    Surely the TU Students for Intellectual Freedom have taken a political philosophy class at Temple University. Of course you guys would be outraged when you saw how much time philosophers like Kant, Locke and Smith receive compared to Marx or even Hobbes. Radical anti-American rhetoric like that of John Locke surely must not be taught in our colleges, right? Of course, those radical thinkers Locke and Smith created arguments for such terrible concepts as property which TU Students for Intellectual Freedom are so terrified of.

    TU Students for Intellectual Freedom would also be appalled by the amount of western Jewish and Christian thought covered in our general education program. Of course, liberal indoctrination begins with Christian principles. right?

    Surely TU Students for Intellectual Freedom understand that academics and universities contribute absolutely nothing to society. Research and development obviously is a front to liberal redistribution. All products consumed by TU Students for Intellectual Freedom that have been a result of university development have been offset by a system of Horowitz credits. That is, a fee paid to print and distribute more copies of Horowitz books so that evil liberal universities know what’s up.

    Obviously such terrible differences in coverage are so terrifying that TU Student for Intellectual Freedom must stifle the freedom of faculty and students interested in portraying and learning both sides of a story. Surely TU Students for Intellectual Freedom believe that a majoritarian movement must be created to ensure job-killing regulations on academic freedom are crafted. Right?

    Anyway, maybe between the two of you you guys can get Temple to develop a major program in closeminded rhetoric. So far you guys have 2 potential classes and 6 potential credits. Keep recruiting! Although, you guys seem to have a poor understanding of curricula so I don’t know how good at developing one you’d be…

    As for me, I wouldn’t want to let McCarthy Jr. know my political beliefs (assuming I even have any), I could be marginalized or jailed should we have a United States of Joel and Alvaro.

  5. For the left its about selective outrage, and misconstruing historical facts, and using the constitution when its to their benefit only- its OK to use the 1st amendment to incite hate and violence but don’t dare carry a firearm. Oh, the hypocrisy of the left is too much for even me to bare.
    Perhaps for the left, all of this anti-American, anti-christian, anti constitution rhetoric is the result of living a spoiled existence in a prosperous, free society without no having to leave the safety of their elitist campuses.
    But even life in a fee, prosperous society has its downfalls especially when you’re a white college kid who feels an immense guilt for living the good life. And, lets face it for spoiled white college kids, Living in America, can be downright boring. So, just for the fun of it, why not jostle society up a bit by creating hate and chaos and striking terror into the hearts of those who disagree. But, wait, can it be? There are a few patriotic young men like Alvaro who dare to tell the leftist whiners like it is. Golly gee, looks like not everyone is doing the Zombie thing. there are those who are willing to defend the republic. Now that’s courage especially in today’s America. (now, where are those Gulags when you need them…LOL..not really)

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