To listen to Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and other politicians attack the curricula of colleges and universities in their states and in the country as a whole, one could come away with the clear impression that a college student in the United States is subject to a nonstop barrage of critical race theory; enforced diversity, equity, and inclusion; and indoctrination into a liberal ideology that says white, straight males are evil and need to be repressed in favor of gender-noncomforming people of color. If that sounds like hyperbole to you, all you need to do is spend five minutes watching a conservative news network or listening to right-wing podcasts, and you’ll hear that left-wing professors are the doom and damnation of the American dream.
Speaking as a tenured liberal with over 30 years of experience in higher education who is a current department chair, I can tell you that this version of university classroom life is a perverse fantasy. It has very little to do with the experiences of the overwhelming number of students at the overwhelming number of colleges and universities in this country. Simply put, what the right-wing fabulists want their viewers, listeners, and readers to think is a lie.