Shame on Harvard.
It’s a sentiment I’ve often said over the years as I’ve watched my alma mater become a bastion of liberal politics and an epicenter for the “woke” culture war waging in America today.
Yes, I went to Harvard University – though they pretend I don’t exist because I am a conservative woman. But Harvard was where I experienced my first taste of East-coast elitism – people who looked down on Ohio and the Heartland because we are “different” from them.
I wasn’t proud of my alma mater when they removed a fellow strong conservative woman and Harvard alumna, Elise Stefanik, from its Institute of Politics advisory panel.
I wasn’t proud when Harvard students filed a petition to ban Trump administration alums from speaking or teaching at the school.
I wasn’t proud when Harvard instituted an overreaching vaccine mandate for all campus members this Fall.
But I am outraged at the latest jaw-dropping move from Harvard that represents an attack on faith and religion in America.
Harvard’s new President of Chaplains is a devout atheist. Not only is this in complete contradiction of the university’s founding, it represents the leftward lurch our universities and institutions have undergone in America, led by the radical Left’s secular revolution.
Harvard was established by the Puritans to ensure the ministry of the day was well-educated. It was named after a pastor, John Harvard, and adopted the motto “Truth for Christ and the Church.” For over half a century, Harvard abided by a longstanding tradition of having a president who was also a clergyman. Yet fast forward to 2021, and the president of the Harvard Chaplains is now a proud, declared atheist.
You can’t make this stuff up.
Of course, Harvard cites their reasoning as one of “inclusion” for the student body – a word that has come to represent the Left’s march toward monolithic thought in the name of their preferred “diversity.”
In fact, a Harvard Crimson survey of the class of 2019 found that nearly 40 percent of students identified as atheists or agnostic, and nearly two thirds identified as ‘somewhat or very liberal.’ This is no coincidence. As Harvard and other elitist institutions cower and cave to the woke Left, they are creating a secularized student body that is void of any diversity of thought.
There is of course a place for community leaders and mentors that does not have to be religious – but the term “chaplain,” by definition, is religious. And at a time when young people are just embarking on their own independent journey, we should be doubling down on faith, not encouraging them to drift away from it.
My faith has been deeply important to me throughout my life. I am a proud Catholic, unabashedly pro-life, and rely on prayer to help navigate life’s stormier waters. I believe that now, more than ever, our country should be leaning into faith, prayer, and religion to guide our leaders and fix the problems our world faces, not running away from it.
The Left’s open opposition to religion speaks volumes about the direction today’s Democrat Party is headed: hostility to voluntary prayer in public school or homeschooling that tends to lean Christian, efforts to repeal the Hyde Amendment and force pro-life Christians to pay for abortions, the secularization of Christmas, the desire to remove “God” from the Pledge of Allegiance, or even their outright denunciation of “God” in the DNC Party platform.
It’s no secret the coastal leftists and media elite often look down on the Heartland of America where families still like to go to Church on Sunday, say a prayer before family dinner, or consult their Bible for prayer. They view this as antiquated or old-fashioned – or even “deplorable.” People who “cling to guns or religion,” as former President Obama said it. But these are the things that make America strong.
As a Christian, a conservative, and a U.S. Senate candidate, I will always stand for your First Amendment right to worship freely and as you choose. This is fundamental and God-given. But I also strongly believe we should speak out against this “wokeism” that is eroding our societal values of faith and freedom.
Our country was founded on Judeo-Christian values, and we need to get back to those faith-based principles. I’m certain our country would be better for it.
Jane Timken is a candidate for the U.S. Senate in Ohio. She is the former Chair of the Ohio Republican Party.