The liberal bias on American college campuses is apparently forcing conservative students underground. A new survey of 1,000 Republican or Republican-leaning college students conducted for The College Fix finds 73 percent of those with "strong Republican" views have withheld their political views in class for fear their grades would suffer. The number remained over 70 percent for those with "weak Republican" views and Republican-leaning independents.
Chris Carmona, political strategist and member of Texas Young Republicans, isn't surprised at those numbers, given the hostile environment created on campus by liberal professors and administrators. For instance, a UT-Austin professor recently called President Trump and his supporters Nazis. "The sad reality is that once you get to these colleges and universities, it's not the students who start the initiation of hatred towards another party, it is the administration and some of these professors," says Carmona.
The other issue is the harsh treatment of conservative speakers on college campuses. Carmona points to incidents this year involving riots on the Cal-Berkeley campus over a speech by conservative activist Milo Yiannopoulos, and protests at Texas Southern University over a speech by Republican state Rep. Briscoe Cain. "You have an outrage of people organizing, even administration getting involved, to stop Republicans--especially young Republicans--from coming out and supporting these speakers," says Carmona. "Therefore, you have a hesitancy from students wanting to show their support for the Republican Party, or even to express Republican views."
Texas took steps to change that this year, with the Legislature passing Senate Bill 18, specifically aimed at protecting free speech in the classroom and on campus. Gov. Greg Abbott signed SB18 into law in June. "In the state of Texas, it is now a safe zone, so to speak, for students to freely express their political leanings inside the classroom and on university campuses," says Carmona.