The idea that schools are accountable to their communities is one of the oldest democratic concepts. Public education has always been governed by a social contract between parents and the government. Hannah-Jones, one of the leading progressive minds in the country, doesn’t see the value of participatory democracy in this arena. Education should be the purview of experts—and only as long as they agree with Hannah-Jones and other progressives.
This elitist and anti-populist ethos increasingly permeates virtually all institutions that progressives control in the United States.
From The New York Times—which doesn’t employ a single opinion columnist who openly supported Trump, who received 75 million votes in 2020—to America’s universities, where liberal faculty outnumber conservative faculty by as much as 12 to 1, progressive organizations often don’t practice what they preach when it comes to pluralism, liberalism, and democracy. They are set up as lopsided organizations that represent just a small sliver of American public opinion.
This ideological rigidity is enforced by a progressive turn against freedom of speech, the cornerstone of liberal democracy. In 2018, 40% of Democrats and 37% of Republicans believed the government should work to restrict false information online; by 2021, 65% of Democrats agreed that the government should do so, while just 28% of Republicans did. An even higher percentage of Democrats (76%) now agree that tech companies should restrict false information, whereas 37% of Republicans agree.