Before coming of age as a student at Hampton University, Carl Gray was a staunch, frequently lone defender of his conservative values. Ask him to recall a specific time where classmates or friends really challenged or debated him on his politics, he can’t remember one — because a teacher or administrator always got in the way to defend liberal policies and the fellow students that believed them.
“That in itself was discouraging to know that teachers and professors wouldn’t even allow for students to have their own discussions regarding political beliefs,” said Gray. “It was ‘My way or the highway’ in those classes. You either agree with the liberal philosophy or face the wrath. I often felt that I was being indoctrinated rather than taught. I actually learned more on my own, by reading both sides and making my own conclusion.”
Gray’s story is a common one on historically black college campuses around the country. As terms like “redistricting,” “job creation” and “equal opportunity” hover around the culture of African Americans and their vote, a growing number of HBCU students and young alumni are supporting conservative values. It is a counter-cultural revolution in the face of traditional politics championed by black college students, but a throwback to the values that conservative HBCU students and alums say aren’t far from what black colleges have always promoted, and need for future progress. (Huffington Post)
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