Prominent Tea Party Thought-attempters have launched something they're calling "Conservative University," a series of online video lectures designed to spread the tenets of conservatism to a younger, plugged in generation of dweebs who are into watching online lectures in their free time. So far, the only course offered is about how feminism is ruining women's studies, and watching it will make you stupider.
According to Vocativ, Conservative University is the brainchild of Accuracy In Academia, a group of conservatives who are mad that facts (and Universities) seem to have a liberal bias.
And the perky disturbingly robotic person delivering the lecture from what appears to be purgatory is conservative pundit Karin Agness, the founder of the Network of Enlightened Women. Agness is cheerfully upset that feminism is too focused on inequality and challenging social structures instead of telling women about inherent sex differences between men and women and that everything was fine JUST FUCKING FINE the way it was in the 1950's when women were housewives and dealt with it. The problem with academic women's studies departments is that they're too focused on activism and not focused enough on just quietly observing the way things are but not really attempting to change anything. What about women who want to be "feminine"? Why are they only getting one viewpoint? she asks, as though she's never read anything written by a fourth wave feminist or is unaware that almost all American universities require students to take courses outside of the Women's Studies Department in order to earn a degree.
When academic departments aim to produce action, she claims, the integrity of an entire academic discipline is compromised. Women's studies departments aim to create feminists, she argues, and that's bad. Just, I'm sure, as she's virulently opposed to how biology departments aim to create biologists, or engineering departments aim to teach students how to be engineers. Academic discipline is for quietly observing without challenging that which is being observed. That's how most science happens. Quiet observation and stagnancy. Teach students about the Big Bang, sure, but also teach them about all of the other stuff that we've disproved, and act as though that stuff hasn't been disproven.
This video relies on a rhetorical technique that I refer to as a "stupidity superstorm," which is where someone throws out so many falsehoods and generalizations and errors and elaborately constructed strawmen in a short period of time that it's impossible to address them all in an organized manner. It also hinges on the bizarre conservative panic over the fragility of beliefs that could be easily toppled by spending time around conflicting opinions.