Letters to the Editor

Talk radio largely Right-wing controlled
Re: “Liberalism running rampant in university settings,” Feb. 1

Allow me to suggest another political breeding ground: talk radio. Inarguably, this is one medium that is almost uniform in its scope. Turn on any local “Power Talk!” or “News Radio” station across the country and you will hear the meanderings of one of many syndicated radio hosts proclaiming the latest right-wing agenda, such as Laura Ingraham, Glen Beck, Sean Hannity and Rush Limbaugh, to name a few.

With the exception of a scant few, these “social commentators” are dominantly in the right-wing camp.

Everyday, millions of Americans tune in to hear the latest on the right-wing agenda. I should know since I am one of them. I grew up listening to Rush Limbaugh. I was a self-proclaimed “dittohead.” But I only listen these days to scoff and hone my arguments, and believe me, these commentators do not disappoint. Driving around Tampa almost every day, I go to work, hop in the van, turn on the radio and tune the dial. The majority of the highest Arbitron-rated shows in this area fall into the category of “conservative talk,” whether it’s Glenn Beck in the morning or Bill O’Reilly and Sean Hannity in the afternoon.

Nozick’s theory stating that liberal professors are unsuccessful in the business world and feel more comfortable in a school setting can be applied to talk radio as well, with some tweaking. Instead of being successful students with book knowledge, perhaps talk-radio hosts were poor students who became successful in life and now wish to spout the theories and the agenda of the Right to prove their mettle.

The talk-radio format is free. Most talk-radio hosts are pushing agendas and grabbing for ratings while selling commercials. Their bombastic methods of discussion leave much to be desired. However, “free” does not always translate into “better.” In fact, last I checked, things that are free are normally not worth bothering with anyway.

The fact that the university is a center for academic knowledge should count for something. It should be no surprise that a high percentage of most professors lean to the left in their views. I count my lucky stars that I pay for and attend an institution of higher learning to hear an “educated” voice.

Benjamin S. Bell is a freshman majoring in pre-nursing.

Intellectuals not right or left, but open-minded
Re: “Liberalism running rampant in university settings,” Feb. 1

Fowler’s comments on liberal professors dominating academia came only a week or so after the president of Harvard was criticized for implying that women performed worse in science and math than men.

Intellectuals do not oppose capitalism but attempt to understand its place in a world of pluralistic worldviews. Due to capitalism’s quick spread and implications for human rights (i.e. rich elites are still in control of the world and they are not liberal), intellectuals should be concerned.

Fowler gives little credence to the fact that many of us were taught by conservatives with a much narrower worldview during our 12 years of public education. I would like to encourage USF students to take extremist rambling such as Fowler’s with a grain of salt and recognize that the diversity of beliefs held by liberals and conservatives are not necessarily mutually exclusive.

Christian Reed is a Peace Corps recruiter at USF.