Campus Reform | 5 times the Trump admin fought against leftism on college campuses

5 times the Trump admin fought against leftism on college campuses

The Trump administration — especially through Betsy DeVos’s Department of Education — made significant strides in fighting against the influence of leftism on college campuses.

Here are five examples from 2020.

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Protecting Religious Student Groups

A proposed rule by the Department of Education would mandate that public and private universities treat religious student groups in the same way as other groups, or risk losing government grant funding. 

"Student organizations, including faith-based student organizations, play an important role at public institutions of higher education,” said a Department of Education press release in January. “Their First Amendment rights, including the freedom of association, must also be protected.”

A 2018 executive order from President Trump sought to help faith-based organizations "compete on a level playing field for grants, contracts, programs, and other Federal funding opportunities."

Defunding Racist and Sexist ‘Diversity’ Training

A Trump executive order released in September mandated that any entity receiving federal dollars would have to stop utilizing training that promotes the “pernicious and false belief that America is an irredeemably racist and sexist country; that some people, simply on account of their race or sex, are oppressors; and that racial and sexual identities are more important than our common status as human beings and Americans.”

The executive order explained that “this destructive ideology is grounded in misrepresentations of our country’s history and its role in the world.”

As a result, schools like the University of Iowa paused their diversity training initiatives. 

However, schools like the University of Michigan and the University of California’s law school released statements resisting the order.

Barring Illegal Immigrants from CARES Act Money

Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos reminded colleges that financial assistance provided by the CARES Act was never intended for illegal immigrant students.

DeVos’ rule stated that only students who qualify for federal financial aid — which includes American citizens and some legal immigrants — would be able to receive the $6 billion in emergency aid funding intended to go directly to students impacted by the pandemic. 

The $6 billion was part of the more than $14 billion allocation to the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund in April.

Launching a ‘Free Speech Hotline’

The Department of Education announced the creation of a new "Free Speech Hotline," which students and faculty can use to report alleged free speech violations.

Campus Reform correspondent Justine Murray participated in a panel unveiling the hotline. When asked how to combat censorship on campus, she told students that they should “know their rights” when working with university administrators.

Murray recounted the many instances of opposition she experienced as a conservative student.

Investigating Princeton for ‘Racism’

After Princeton University issued a self-flatulating statement about the supposed racism “embedded” in the institution, the Department of Education launched a civil rights investigation into the school.

"Based on its admitted racism, the U.S. Department of Education ('Department') is concerned Princeton’s nondiscrimination and equal opportunity assurances in its Program Participation Agreements from at least 2013 to the present may have been false," said a letter to Princeton president Christopher Eisgruber. 

"The Department is further concerned Princeton perhaps knew, or should have known, these assurances were false at the time they were made,” it added.

Follow the author of this article on Twitter: @BenZeisloft