Add a Christian College to the Already Weighted Conservative Journal Opinion Roster

September 14th, 2012 · 2 Comments · journalism, role of government, tax policy

By Denise Tessier

Earlier this week, fully a third of the Journal’s Op-Ed page was filled with a column by yet another conservative voice. This time, however, it was a conservative Christian college, rather than think tank, that provided the expert.

The column was written by Paul Kengor, whose by-line describes him as “Executive Director, The Center for Vision & Values at Grove City College.”

Grove City College, located in Pennsylvania, has been ranked 133 among liberal arts colleges by U.S. News and World Reports. It also has been consistently ranked as a “Top Conservative College” by the Young America’s Foundation, “the principal outreach organization of the Conservative Movement.”

On its website, Grove City College describes the motivations of its founders in 1876, who:

. . . held a vision of Christian society transcending denomination, creeds, and confessions. They were committed to the advancement of free enterprise, civil and religious liberty, representative government, arts and letters, and science and technology.

Believing that the fruits of civilization would be destroyed if religious and ethical roots were allowed to wither, the founders intended that the claims of Christ as God and Savior and of inspired Scripture be presented to all. They hoped that through its program of intellectual, moral, and spiritual education, Grove City College would produce young leaders, whatever their creed or confession, capable of pushing civilization forward on every frontier.

And while many points of view are examined, the College unapologetically advocates preservation of America’s religious, political, and economic heritage of individual freedom and responsibility. (emphases added )

This is not to debate the quality of Grove City College as an educational institution, but to provide some background on where the author of the Journal column works. The Sept. 10 column, which is not available on the Journal’s website, posited that the Democratic Party is becoming more godless and socialist. It can be read here. In the Journal, it ran under the headline, “Dems’ Exclusion of God a Tenet of Europe,” in large, 60-point type.

It’s hard to tell whether this is the first time the Journal has run Kengor, since even this published column didn’t show up in a website search. The Journal’s sister publication, the Mountain View Telegraph, has run at least three columns by him – in September 2010, January 2011 and September 2011.

It will be interesting to see if the Journal follows suit and Kengor becomes a regular. At the end of this week’s column, the Journal described Kengor as:

. . . a professor of political science at Grove City College and the author of the book “The Communist: Frank Marshall Davis, The Untold Story of Barack Obama’s Mentor.”

What’s interesting, however, is the line after that, which says:

The views and opinions expressed herein may, but do not necessarily, reflect the views of Grove City College.

It’s curious that the Journal’s editorial editors were careful to preserve this disclaimer for Grove City College, without adding one of their own. (Such disclaimers, by the way, did not appear on the three Mountain View columns.)

Readers generally understand that letters to the editor reflect the opinion of the writer, and they probably understood that the column that also ran on Sept. 10 by the “retired APS teacher” is that person’s perspective. There is no general “disclaimer” that these writings “may, but do not necessarily, reflect the views” of the Albuquerque Journal.

Kengor, however, was given top billing and plenty of space on the Journal’s Sept. 10 Op-Ed Page– along with a curiously disingenuous disclaimer from his college.

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2 Comments so far ↓

  • Michael Garcia

    Thanks Denise! It is one more straw that is breaking the camel’s back! I have finally had enough of this rag! we are dropping the weekly delivery and just going with the Sunday edition, just to have some of news that this “paper” contains.
    It seems the Journal is getting worse with their right wing bias. Possibly, it is the election year politics thing, who knows….maybe it was always this bad and I/we just brushed it off. Already stacked with Cal Thomas, Jonah Goldberg, and Victor Davis Hansen, it appears the Journal continues to get worse. The cartoons, the letters from angry right wingers who magically all appear with no rebuttal on divisive issues of the day from anyone on the left, the “liberal columnists” who aren’t really liberal, and the “stealth righties”-those right wing columnists that the Journal loves to print-(Samuelson, Navarrette, Dimond). Come on, Journal. If it talks like a right winger and acts like a right winger, they are right wingers! It doesn’t have to be a George Will or Bill O’Reilly. It’s all the same.
    The kicker for me was the petulant and over the top staff editorial regarding the Pat Rogers flap. The story broke about what, a week and a half ago, and they’re still whining that one of their own was busted making stupid remarks and resigned on HIS OWN! No one I know, who is Hispanic thinks that the Lynette/”chola” thing is racist. It is funny, and lighthearted and close to us here who all know someone who says these colloquialisms. But of course it is fodder for a right wing editorial trying to make a idiotic, misguided point.

  • Cheryl Everett

    Well said. And let’s not forget the Journal’s habit of burying important news, like the 3-inch tidbit on A-4 last week that led with: “Record numbers of US households struggled at times to feed their families last year, according to a report Wed. from the US Dept. of Agriculture on the state of hunger in America.” This merits a “white paper” (remember when NBC news did those?) on the national story and how it plays out in NM. I’m not holding my breath.

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