Loyalty oaths come to Idaho’s universities with faculty “diversity statements”

Loyalty oaths come to Idaho’s universities with faculty “diversity statements”

Anna Miller
November 22, 2021
Anna Miller
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November 22, 2021

The commitment to Critical Social Justice (CSJ) on America’s college campuses does not waver. It may go underground for a while, it may be difficult to detect for a while, but it is ongoing and persistent. Pauses mean a gathering of forces followed by bursts of action. 

At Idaho’s universities, there is a pause in some respects, but Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) is churning beneath the surface. Universities are now requiring job candidates to include DEI statements in their job packets; adherence to this ideology is becoming a prerequisite to get a job as faculty in Idaho’s universities. These ideological loyalty oaths on college campuses require faculty candidates to pledge commitment to the university’s diversity agenda in its struggle against meritocracy, individuality, and colorblindness. 

CSJ is the ideology that holds that America and Western civilization itself have built irredeemable structures of systematic racism, sexism, homophobia, etc. Advocates claim to know this because groups have different outcomes in America. For example, women make up 50% of the population but only 15% of engineers, so CSJ advocates claim it must be due to sexism rather than choice or preference. 

CSJ advocates insist those structures can be destroyed and replaced with institutions that will bring about group equity. In higher education, DEI policies promise to increase group equity. DEI is the answer to the problem posed by CSJ. DEI emphasizes group identity, assumes group victimization, and claims entitlements for certain groups. It rejects the ideas of a pluralistic free society, the rule of law, and universalism in human experience. 

Universities around the country are pursuing DEI policies with binge hiring of administrative personnel, a bevy of new policies, and changes in curriculum. Hiring policies are changing to require implicit bias training and increase affirmative action. Campus police policies are changing. New academic centers, such as Boise State's Antiracism Center, are popping up on campuses to increase their DEI profiles. More DEI events are planned. 

DEI statements for job candidates is another prevailing nationwide trend. Faculty candidates have been traditionally evaluated based on a cover letter, their curriculum vitae, a research statement, and teaching statement. Now, DEI statements require that candidates pledge fealty to the CSJ-DEI ideological framework, in both word and deed. 

The purpose of diversity statements is to disadvantage or weed out dissidents — any candidate in favor of a free society and against the ideological pursuits of the university. 

A recent study from the American Enterprise Institute found that about 20% of job postings included DEI statements. Such statements, I have found, are much more common in the hard sciences than in the social sciences and humanities. 

Boise State and University of Idaho have posted many jobs requiring DEI statements from candidates. Take a look at this sample of Boise State job listings:

Other departments with job listings requiring diversity statements include Anthropology and Kinesiology.

University of Idaho also has posed jobs requiring DEI statements: 

  • An Assistant Professor of Biological Sciences job posting requires the candidate to submit a one page “diversity and inclusion statement.” 
  • An Assistant Professor of Political Science job posting at UI must give an account of “experience teaching and mentoring students from diverse cultural backgrounds, or experience working with people holding similar or different world views while advocating for inclusion of all people.” Candidates must also submit “a diversity statement that details how the candidate’s teaching, service, and/or scholarship has supported the success of students from racial, ethnic, and gender backgrounds that are underrepresented in their academic field.” 
  • An Assistant Professor of Geography and Geological Sciences job posting requires the candidate to submit a one page “diversity and inclusion statement.” 
  • A Faculty position in the UI College of Law requires a “statement (two pages maximum) of your demonstrated commitment to fostering an inclusive community in legal education and/or the legal profession.”
  • An Assistant Professor of Chemistry must submit a one page statement on “diversity and inclusion.” 
  • An Assistant Professor of Theatre Arts must submit a “diversity statement.”

The University of Idaho is also requiring a diversity statement for Vice Provost of Academic Initiatives

Conservatives, classical liberals, and everyone who is not a DEI activist would hardly feel welcome to apply for these jobs. Males must think they have little chance of landing the jobs. Universities compromise academic excellence by cutting themselves off from the whole market. 

These job postings have been approved at the highest levels of our universities. The prevalence of DEI statements throughout the hard sciences at Boise State suggests either the college dean or an upper administrator are pursuing these policies. Perhaps both of those things. 

Universities should eschew diversity statements altogether. However, given higher education’s commitment to DEI, this reform will likely require legislative action. The Legislature could ban universities from requiring DEI statements in job applications. Similar to how the Legislature banned racially discriminatory hiring practices, public institutions should not ideologically discriminate either. In their place, universities could adopt a newfound commitment to intellectual diversity and their core mission to pursue truth.

The surface calm should not mislead. Our universities continue to radicalize despite the expressed wishes stated by our legislature last term. 

View Comments
  • KJ says:

    Being diverse in Latin: separate, distinct, kept apart.

    Segregation into competing factors is what the politicians do as they sow discord for the benefits of power and money. If you ain't a liberal you ain't in the club of the elite.

    • Mark Arrowood says:

      I guess if you’re like the IFF here and want to close the campus to all but the “chosen few” then railing against inclusion and diversity is a noble task. But to the average, educated, Christian we find it immoral, wicked and sinful. A special place in my hell or your heaven awaits people who cling to the ideology of exclusion.

      • KJ says:

        You don't see it do you?

        "Check out any professional and most college basketball teams. Their starting five, and most of their other 10 players, are Black, as is 80% of the NBA. This does not come anywhere close to the diversity and inclusion sought by the nation’s social justice warriors. Both professional and college coaches have ignored and threw any pretense of seeking diversity and inclusiveness.
        Stanford Linear Accelerator Center (National Accelerator Laboratory) is home to the world’s most powerful experiments, fastest supercomputers and top-notch physics researchers. Much of SLAC’s research is on particle accelerators that are complicated machines that are designed, engineered and operated to produce high-quality particle beams and develop clues to the fundamental structure of matter and the forces between subatomic particles. You can bet that their personnel makeup exhibits very little concern about racial diversity, equity and inclusion. The bulk of their scientists is not only Americans of European and Asian ancestry but mostly men.

        My question to you is: What would you do to make SLAC more illustrative of the racial, ethnic and sexual diversity of America? My answer would be the same one that I gave in the basketball example: I am going to recruit the brightest scientists, and I do not care if most of them turn out to be men of European and Asian ancestry."
        -Walter Williams

        Think outside the box. I won't hire on color, I hire on expertise.

      • James says:

        This is a ridiculous and immature statement. It appears that you live within your own special place in hell by demanding forced diversity and inclusion. Choosing the right candidate for a job position should never be based on this radical hateful twisted ideology. Applicants should be hired by their experience and expertise rather than this dangerous D.E.I. nonsense.

      • James King says:

        Do you even have any clue of what Marxism is? Try Thomas Sowell’s book on the subject. While you’re at it, Mr. righteous Christian, check your Bible for verses on making accusations and the fruits of foolishness. Strap on your mask and vote blue, you’ll get what you deserve.

  • KJ says:

    Winston Churchill during the Munich Debate of October 5th, 1938.

    The people, he said, should be told that “we have sustained a defeat without a war, the consequences of which will travel far with us along our road; they should know that we have passed an awful milestone in our history … And do not suppose that this is the end. This is only the beginning of the reckoning. This is only the first sip, the first foretaste of a bitter cup which will be proffered to us year by year unless by a supreme recovery of moral health and martial vigour, we arise again and take our stand for freedom as in the olden time.”

    President Biden has already made it clear that he does not understand those words or appreciate their present importance. For now, Americans remain preoccupied with navel-gazing about Critical Race Theory and endlessly revisiting slavery 158 years after its abolition. Hopefully sometime before China takes Taiwan, Putin takes Ukraine, and Iran develops the Bomb, the United States will reject Acceptance of her eclipse and embrace her own supreme recovery of moral health and martial vigour.

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