And for those who enjoy irony, it is amusing to learn that the faculties that most loudly proclaim their commitment to diversity do not exemplify it in the very area, viewpoint, that is (or should be) most central to their professional mission.Honestly, I don't know how anyone can say that with a straight face. Nevermind the fact that Schuck clearly knows nothing about sampling bias, as the figures he use come from 29% of the faculty at the surveyed institutions (a fact that Leiter notes). Since when has bivariate analysis of political contributions said anything profound about diversity of viewpoints? Does Schuck really think that all viewpoints are either Democratic or Republican (or liberal and conservative, as though contributing to Democrats necessarily indicates liberalism, and contributing to Republicans necessarily indicates conservativism)? Does he not understand that both within and outside of those two categories, there are a wide range of viewpoints? And what's more, since when has ensuring that Democrats and Republicans are both well represented been the professional mission of anyone? Unless they're teaching a course on contemporary poliiics, I can't imagine it's an academic's mission to do so.
When Leiter makes roughly these points in response, Schuck replies:
I too would prefer rigorous social science studies, but until they arrive, I feel fairly confident in relying on the ones I cited plus my personal observations and knowledge of the political leanings of elite faculties over a 25-year period.That's exactly why Schuck's idea of "viewpoint diversity" can't cut it in law schools, or in any other academic institutions. Relying on a bunch of extremely flawed, and potentially irrelevant studies, combined with the answer "I know what I've seen," just doesn't cut it.