Princeton today

Four years ago, we published an article by a distinguished alum of Princeton University. He documented the leftist takeover of Princeton, tracing it back to the late 1960s and the rise of William Bowen and Shirley Tilghman. He wrote:

Over the years, beginning as early as the 1960s and 1970s, Princeton loaded up its faculty with liberals, socialists, Marxists, and other fellow travellers, and more recently, with people like Paul Krugman, Peter Singer, Cornel West, and Sean Wilentz. The collective groupthink was evident in 2012, when the student newspaper determined that “99 percent of donors from Princeton [gave] to Obama” during that year’s presidential campaign. It did not seem to occur to anyone at the university that there was anything wrong with such an imbalance.

The alum also noted that Princeton “routinely honors alumni who are liberal public officials and figures, like former Senator Paul Sarbanes, First Lady Michelle Obama, and Supreme Court Justices Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan.” Meanwhile, it typically ignores highly accomplished conservatives such as Justice Samuel Alito.

Four years later, this trend has become more pronounced and more unabashed. Last month, Princeton unveiled portraits of four alums: Denny Chin, Carl Fields, Robert Rivers, and Alan Turing. Next year, it will unveil portraits of Bill Bradley, Elaine Fuchs, Ruth Simmons, and Justice Sotomayor.

Diversity is the common thread. Princeton is upfront about this. Christopher Eisgruber, Princeton’s feckless president, declared that the portraits “will serve as a visible expression of Princeton as the welcoming community we are today, even as we continue to strive to become ever more inclusive and diverse in the years ahead.” (Emphasis added)

Turing was a great British mathematician and the subject of the film “The Imitation Game.” It seems clear, however, that his famous homosexuality explains Princeton’s decision to honor him.

Simmons is an African-American college administrator. So was Fields. Rivers, also African-American, was a surgeon, professor, and college dean for minority affairs.

Bradley, the only straight white male in the batch of eight, is a liberal Democrat (and also one of the best college basketball players I’ve ever seen). He deserves to be honored by Princeton, but almost certainly wouldn’t be if he were a conservative Republican.

Chin and Sotomayor are judges — Chin at the federal appellate level and Sotomayor on the Supreme Court. There’s no reason for Princeton not to be proud of both.

But what about Justice Alito? He’s further up the judicial ladder than Chin is and has served on the Supreme Court longer than Sotomayor has. The left despises his votes and opinions, but no objective observer would claim that he takes a backseat to Sotomayor in the quality of his work.

Unfortunately, Alito has no place at today’s Princeton. Its quest to become “ever more inclusive and diverse” does not encompass honoring conservatives or even, judging from the faculty, allowing conservative voices much of a hearing on campus.

Even Stanford Law School honored William Rehnquist, an alum, with a fountain some years ago. I think this was little more than a move to raise funds from conservative alums like me. But still. . .

In Princeton’s case, even fundraising appears not to be motive enough to honor Justice Alito or any other outstanding conservative alum.