Growing acceptance of “post-birth abortion”

With the help of modern science, pro-lifers have pretty much won the argument that a baby in the womb is a human life, there being little difference between a child in the womb and a child outside the womb.  But that doesn’t mean pro-abortion zealots are necessarily changing their beliefs.  To an increasing number, this just means that it is also fine to kill the child outside the womb.

In fact, to many college students–many of whom have been required to read the pro-infanticide arguments of Princeton ethicist Peter Singer–children are not “self-aware” until they are 4 or 5 (have they never talked to a 4 or 5 year old?), and so it should be legal to kill them up to that point. [Read more...]

College does NOT undermine faith

Glenn T. Stanton, in a useful feature at Gospel Coalition called “FactChecker,” cites research overturning the conventional wisdom that going to college undermines a young person’s faith.  Actually, NOT going to college is much more strongly associated with losing faith.  And 2.7 times more graduates say that college strengthened their faith, as opposed to weakening it. [Read more...]

College does not cause students to lose their faith

Presidential candidate Rick Santorum has been saying that 62% of college students lose their faith by the time they graduate.  Calvin College sociologist Jonathan P. Hill takes a look at the dubious source of that statistic and cites better studies that point to a different conclusion:

We know that some measures of religious belief, and quite a few measures of religious practice, decline as young people move from adolescence to emerging adulthood. In order to decide if blame should be laid at the feet of higher education, we need representative data that follow the religious trajectories of young people as some head off to college and others do not.

And this is precisely what we have. Studies using comparable data from recent cohorts of young people (for example, the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1997, the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health, and the National Study of Youth and Religion) have found virtually no overall differences on most measures of identity, practice, and belief between those who head off to college and those who do not. The one exception to this is the consistent finding that college graduates attend religious services more frequently than those who do not graduate from college.

This doesn’t settle the matter, though. As is often the case with social-science findings, there are many exceptions and caveats. And there are some differences in student religious trajectories that appear to depend on the religious affiliation of colleges attended. For example, both evangelical colleges and public institutions tend to curb the decline in church attendance while Roman Catholic and mainline Protestant institutions are more likely to exacerbate it.

Over all, though, this is good news for the faithful. College is clearly not the enemy of religion. Students are not abandoning their faith commitments because of their godless college professors.

via Parsing Santorum’s Statistic on God and College: Looks as if It’s Wrong – Commentary – The Chronicle of Higher Education.

In fact, there is evidence that college graduates actually go to church at a higher rate than those who did not go to college.

HT:  Jackie

No adult supervision

Alexandra Petri usually writes humorous punditry, but not when she considers the case of George Huguely V who got drunk at the University of Virginia and killed his girlfriend.  Her descriptions of the moral climate at most of our colleges and universities and the complete lack of adult supervision are quite accurate:

The setting is a character on its own: the college campus, where hook-up culture runs rampant and you are expected to drink four times a week, where you can sleep with someone and he can come to the stand and say that you were just friends, and it can be true. It’s a no-man’s land in which everyone wants to have fun without consequence. Where people are just mature enough to act immaturely. . . .

Under the best of circumstances, drugs, alcohol, sex, sports and a lack of supervision can be a potent and bewildering combination. This is hard enough when it’s going well, when calling yourself an “alcoholic” is a joke among friends. When it’s going badly, it’s impossible.

Where were the adults?

Time and again, reading through the coverage of the trial, I am struck by the — adriftness, for want of a better word — of everyone involved in this. There’s the discipline of sports but then, off the field, there’s the strange mess of college life. Sunday Funday. Hookups. Parties. College is a place you arrive after working awfully hard in high school — or at least writing one or two really compelling personal essays — and you are entitled to your share of fun. Afterwards, you might not find a job. So enjoy those four years. Colleges act in loco parentis only in the sense that some parents are very hands-off, have lots of money and only show up to prevent the police from getting involved.

This is the worst kind of protection. The point of college is to admit high school kids and graduate adults. But it is impossible to grow up in a world where no one is watching.

And this is how things go wrong in a world where nothing is supposed to go wrong.

The only thing that happens in moderation on college campuses? Studying. Eat and drink and love and lie, for tomorrow we may graduate. Institutions of higher learning? As the study “Academically Adrift” found, the average college student spends just 12 hours a week, well, studying, avoiding courses with more than 40 pages of reading a week. This is college. They have better things to do. For some, it works out fine. But for others, the lack of supervision comes at a heavy cost.

Where were the protection of parents and school and policemen and the law on that dreadful Monday night when Huguely stormed to [Yeardley] Love’s apartment and bashed in her door?

In life, these awful tragedies happen, and there is little you can do to stop them. The net of family and friends and well-intentioned neighbors is not always woven tightly enough.

But this should not happen at college.

It’s an adult tragedy with adult consequences. Where were the adults?

via The tragedy of George Huguely – ComPost – The Washington Post.

I suspect most parents of university students and most taxpayers who support state institutions have no idea the level of debauchery that has become typical on college campuses today.  The authors of the book referred to above, Academically Adrift, care little about moral issues as such, but they blame the nonstop sex-and-intoxication culture and the hands-off attitude of college administrators as one reason for the collapse of academics that is happening even in big-name institutions.  (Things are different at my institution, Patrick Henry College, both in our moral ethos and in our academic achievements.)

I also suspect that the lack, for all practical purpose, of an adult presence in the world of teenagers also played a role in yesterday’s shootings in that Ohio high school.

Revolt of the children

A 16-year-old boy in the Netherlands was arrested for bringing down the MasterCard and Visa websites in retaliation for their refusing to process payments for Wikileaks. More young hackers are promising more attacks.

In the meantime, British university students have been rioting in protest of that country’s new austerity program, which includes raising tuition rates to a fraction of what American students pay. The British students, notorious for their political apathy previously, are breaking windows, smashing shops, burning cars, and assaulting police officers. They even attacked Prince Charles and his wife as they were driving by, smashing a window in their car. See TUITION FEES VOTE PROTEST: Charles and Camilla’s car attacked as thousands of students descend on Parliament | Mail Online.

So will young people–unused to any kind of austerity, indignant at established authority,and able to use the internet really well–rise up and overthrow the adult world?


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