According to the Left, it has gotten bigger and better and just needs more money to perform its job of properly shaping young minds.
On the other hand, Ted McAllister and Bruce Frohnen think that higher education has mostly become a costly trap for Americans.
A trap? They write:
Years (usually more than the advertised four) of indoctrination in the classroom and, more harshly, the dormitories, followed by decades of crushing debt, all made far worse by the realization that our degrees have qualified us for very little.
Furthermore, there’s the ideological twist that most students encounter on a daily basis. As the authors state:
Free inquiry has been replaced by “safe spaces” and the shouting down of anyone who speaks out against anti-Western ideologies and the cult of victimization. Bureaucracies that smack of the old Soviet Union enforce a code of political correctness infusing every aspect of university life with suspicion and resentment. Having banished all but a tiny remnant of conservatives and even most liberals from the professoriate, universities become ever more determined to undermine all aspects of American culture and higher learning.
McAllister and Frohnen hope that American higher education can be salvaged.
To reclaim higher education for our culture, and for its own proper ends, it must again be the product of local communities serving local needs. We are not saying that the large research university should be abolished. But it is long past time for American taxpayers to stop supporting its maintenance, let alone its expansion. We currently spend billions of dollars subsidizing a system that rewards ideological malpractice, seeking to undermine our way of life as it enriches a few top administrators, enables self-indulgence among all too many professors, allows educrats to hector and indoctrinate our young people, and fails to serve our common interests.
I’d say that hits the nail squarely on the head.