Look, this is a ridiculous exercise. Only the blind can't see there is bias. I've been invited to speak on 250 campuses but only once by a professor (whom I knew and asked to invite me) and three times by administrators. You think they'd hire me?No, I don't, but it's easy to see why from that short response alone. His utter disdain for scholarly standards (in this case, the same statistical methods used by economists to prove racial discrimination, e.g. in this paper) would make professors hesitant to invite him to speak, much less to want to hire him. Perhaps he finds scholarly standards so useless because they're associated with scholars, who are mostly liberals?
I responded to Horowitz, noting that his dismissal of an attempt to find objective evidence of discrimination is probably why no one would hire him. I also reminded him that courts do not accept disparity alone, no matter how large it may be, as evidence of discrimination, particularly in cases involving remedial measures like those Horowitz has proposed. I wrote:
You can't be serious. If you are, then it's no surprise that no one would hire you. Such an anecdotal account (even a dozen such anecdotal accounts) hardly constitutes objective evidence that would meet the scholarly standards of any institution.Here is what he had to say to that:
However, since the courts demand such studies from people alleging discrimination in other contexts, I'm surprised that you would be so dismissive of an attempt to gather objective evidence of discrimination that meets judicial standards.
Don't be an asshole. If blacks were half the country and were outnumbered on faculties 10 to 1 all schools and even 30-1 on many you would have no trouble finding something amiss. Whoever proved by the way that faculties actually discriminated against women and blacks? The answer is no one. The Supreme Court has ruled that the absence of skin diversity (skin diversity!) IN ITSELF is harmful to education. So how much more powerful is this case.Yes, my proposing, and even offering to help conduct the first scholarly study of the causes of the liberal-conservative disparity makes me an asshole. The rest of that email demonstrates his failure to understand the very problem that he has spent so much time discussing. It is true that, in general, diversity benefits education. However, there are two important points that Horowitz is apparently unable to grasp. First, not all diversity is good. If ideas, like those Horowitz has expressed in these emails, do not meet rigorous scholarly standards, then including them in an individual's education is most likely harmful. It may simply be that many conservative scholarship is inferior.
Second, even if conservative scholarship is not generally inferior (I don't want to imply that it is; I'm agnostic on that point), in order to know how to remedy the disparity between liberals and conservatives in academia, we have to know what has caused it. Horowitz is operating under the assumption that discrimination is to blame, but if this is not the case, then remedial measures designed to counteract discrimination will be ineffective, and perhaps even harmful to education. For instance, it may be that conservative the conservative intellectuals who attempt to go into academia publish less, receive less favorable teacher evaluations, or are otherwise inferior on some dimension or dimensions relevant to success in academia. If this is the case, then remedial measures should be aimed at these factors specifically. Most likely, the disparity is due to a variety of factors, and until someone actually does the empirical research, we will not know how best to remedy it. I can't help but feeling that Horowitz's lack of interest in such research demonstrates a lack of genuine interest in diversity, as well, since his own reasoning cannot lead to productive measures to increase it.