Professor Requires Students To Agree That Native American Mascots Should Be Banned

December 10, 2014

By Ashley Dobson at Red Alert Politics

An American Indian Studies professor at the University of Minnesota is requiring his students to agree with his views on Native American issues in order to pass an assignment, Campus Reform reports.

“You must pick one of the following topics and your video must be focused on that topic. Your video must follow the line of questioning laid out. In other words, you have to stick with the theme I gave you. You cannot give a counter argument. Your video must be focused on why your subject matter is important and why it should happen,” read the instructions on a recent assignment obtained by Campus Reform.
The nine topics listed by professor Wayne Bendickson are quite clearly biased.
They include controversial ideas like: “The state of MN should apologize to Ojibwe and Dakota people for the genocidal policies,” “Land should be returned to the Dakota and/or Ojibwe people within the state of MN,” “The state of MN should have a truth telling forum,” and “Indian foster children should be placed in homes with other Indian families.”

Perhaps the most discussed and timely of the topics is the one that touches on the Democrats’ obsession with the Washington Redskins football team name.

“Indian mascots should be banned from sports,” it read.

John Mickley, a sophomore at the Minnesota school, said that the issue is not necessarily the prompts themselves, but that students are forced to take on a certain opinion. This has squashed their free speech.

“I think it doesn’t really give us an opportunity for free thought or come to our own conclusion,” Mickley told Campus Reform. “He basically just tells us how we should think and what we should believe.”

This assignment is similar to a recent case at the University of California Davis. The school was requiring its students to complete  a mandatory “Violence Intervention & Prevention” online program, which requires them to agree with the school’s stance on what constitutes “harmful language,” before they could register for classes.

The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education got involved in that instance  and urged the school to change its unconstitutional policy.

“While UC Davis is free to urge students to consider the broader social and political implications of their speech, the university cannot, consistent with students’ right to be free from compelled speech, require its students to adopt certain viewpoints or affirm that particular types of constitutionally protected speech are objectionable as a condition of their ability to register for classes at the university,” the group wrote.

Schools: University of Minnesota – Twin Cities