Presidents, Lose the Politesse. Oppose Trump’s Re-election.
In his landmark essay, “The Role of the University as an Institution in Confronting External Issues,” published in 1978 while he was president of Princeton, William G. Bowen argued persuasively that “there is a strong presumption against the University … taking a position or playing an active role with respect to external issues of a political, economic, social, moral, or legal character. By the “University,” I believe, he means chiefly those in positions of leadership like presidents or members of a board of trustees, since it would be impossible for the university as a whole, with all its disparate parts and diverse constituencies, to speak in one voice about anything.
Originally published: October 22, 2020
Author: Brian Rosenberg
Position: President Emeritus
Institution: Macalester College
Published by: The Chronicle of Higher Ed