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The Dominoes Are Falling Fast On Marxist ‘Diversity, Equity & Inclusion’ Programs

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he dominoes are falling faster on Marxist “Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion” programs in higher education, with Massachusetts Institute of Technology recently becoming the first “elite” U.S. university to eliminate DEI considerations in its hiring. Analysts are referring to the decision as a turning point in the battle against “wokeness” in academia.

In true Soviet style, MIT applicants were required to provide a statement bending the knee to DEI ideology. As part of that, they were forced to outline their supposed understanding of “challenges related to diversity, equity, and inclusion.” Polling cited by Fox News revealed that a “large majority” of students and faculty were scared to express their real views.

As part of the hiring process, MIT also forced applicants to outline their “track record of working with diverse groups of people.” Finally, all faculty applicants at MIT were coerced into developing a plan for advancing DEI ideology in their role at the university. In short, publicly embrace the “woke” diversity ideology — or find another job.

Critics have compared the coerced DEI statements as a tool for screening out independent thinkers, conservatives, Christians, and others from academia. It represents a forced humiliation ritual, too, with all faculty and sometimes even students being coerced to pledge allegiance to a dangerous ideology that they may secretly loathe.

The decision to nix the requirements, embraced by MIT’s senior leadership, comes as more and more universities, donors, lawmakers, investors, and other influential figures find the courage to speak out against the draconian ideology. Multiple states including Florida have forced the issue, ordering state colleges and universities to dismantle the DEI apparatus. 

MIT President Dr. Sally Kornbluth offered a statement on why the decision was made. “My goals are to tap into the full scope of human talent, to bring the very best to MIT, and to make sure they thrive once here,” she said. “We can build an inclusive environment in many ways, but compelled statements impinge on freedom of expression, and they don’t work.”

According to media reports, the decision to end forced DEI statements was made by Kornbluth in collaboration with all six academic deans, the MIT chancellor, and the MIT provost. It was not immediately clear whether the university would eliminate positions within the sprawling DEI ideological-enforcement bureaucracy.

One major group opposing the use of DEI statements, the Foundation for Individual Rights and Expression (FIRE), explained the danger of DEI policies “compelling faculty to affirm contested views on matters of public debate or to embed specific ideological perspectives in their academic activities.”

“This violates faculty members’ individual rights and thwarts values like intellectual freedom, epistemic humility, and open-mindedness that underlie a university’s mission to produce and disseminate knowledge,” the group said in a statement. As such, it cautioned universities to be careful about running afoul of the law.

“DEI statement policies can too easily function as ideological litmus tests that threaten employment or advancement opportunities for faculty who dissent from prevailing thought on DEI,” the group added, warning administrators that efforts to stifle free speech, compel speech, or undermine academic freedom may violate the First Amendment.

Also urging colleges and universities to stop using DEI statements was the Academic Freedom Alliance in Princeton. “The rapid and widespread dissemination of such statements has proceeded with far too little attentiveness to obvious threats to academic freedom,” the organization warned in 2022, calling on institutions to “desist” in the scheme.  

“The demand for diversity statements enlists academics into a political movement, erasing the distinction between academic expertise and ideological conformity,” the statement continued, warning that even leftists could be ensnared in the DEI regime. “It encourages cynicism and dishonesty.”

More and more voices in higher education are finding the courage to dissent against DEI orthodoxy, too. “I am a scholar on the left committed to struggles for social justice,” Harvard Law Professor Randall Kennedy wrote in the Harvard Crimson. “The realities surrounding mandatory DEI statements, however, make me wince. The practice of demanding them ought to be abandoned, both at Harvard and beyond.”

As The Newman Report documented in March, the University of Florida — widely considered one of America’s top public university — decided to eliminate its entire DEI bureaucracy under pressure from the state. All DEI apparatchiks had their positions ended including the “Chief Diversity Officer.”

“DEI really is a cover for discrimination, exclusion and indoctrination,” explained Florida Board of Education Chairman Ben Gibson, echoing sentiments expressed by Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and other political leaders. “That has no place in our state colleges at all, and our state colleges need to be focused on learning.”

It is a good sign that more and more universities including Ivy League schools are rejecting the DEI madness. But the battle is far from over. And as the escalating lunacy infecting college students shows, DEI is more a symptom of the deadly disease than the root cause. Taxpayers, parents, donors, and lawmakers must all do more to restore sanity. ✪