Birth of Freedom, Berkeley or Bethlehem? With Dr. Everett Piper: Our good friend Dr. Everett Piper from Oklahoma Wesleyan University is with us on today’s episode discussing the true birthplace of freedom and how important it is to choose your college wisely.
Air Date:Â 06/12/2017
Guests: Dr. Everett Piper, David Barton, Rick Green, and Tim Barton
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Transcription note: Â As a courtesy for our listeners’ enjoyment, we are providing a transcription of this podcast. Â However, as this is transcribed from a live talk show, words and sentence structure were not altered to fit grammatical, written norms in order to preserve the integrity of the actual dialogue between the speakers. Â Additionally, names may be misspelled because of the difficulty in understanding the speaker at times. We apologize in advance.
Welcome to the intersection of faith and the culture, this is WallBuilders Live! Where we”re talking about these hottest topics on policy, faith, and the culture, all of it from Biblical, historical, and constitutional perspective.
That conversation here with David Barton, America’s premiere historian and our founder here at WallBuilders. Also, Tim Barton, president of WallBuilders, national speaker, and pastor. And my name’s Rick Green. I’m a former Texas state rep, national speaker, and author.
Find out more at our websites WallBuilders.com and also WallBuildersLive.com. WallBuilders.com, a wealth of information and tools and different things you can get to there. And then WallBuildersLive.com for the radio program, listing of stations, and archives for past programs, if you’d like to listen to some of those.
Colleges Are Not Allowing Free Speech
Later in the program, we’re going to have Dr. Everett Piper with us from Oklahoma Wesleyan University talking about one of his recent articles the fact that Berkeley is not the beginning of free speech.
So, David, Tim, I don’t know. I always thought Berkeley, wasn”t that where the Constitution came from? Wasn”t it these liberals in California that gave us all these great freedoms?
I think you meant that’s where the anti-Constitution came from.
Probably so, yes.
Since California was a major part of the original 13 colonies.
And all those people that struggle with geography are now going, “Really? I didn’t know that.” No, it was not, it was not. California is on the opposite side of the United States.
No, it was not, it was not. California is on the opposite side of the United States.
And now pretty well stands on the opposite side of all things constitutionally. But that’s another topic.
That is fairly accurate with the position- and actually, I guess it’s a maybe not as accurate in the sense of Berkeley because Berkeley really fits in with many universities today but California’s positions are very, very liberal and do contrast a lot of the rest of the nation. But Berkeley does fit in with a lot of the modern movement of universities where you have professors that are coming out and attacking free speech, attacking religious liberty, attacking gender identity-
And by the way, I have to say, they”re attacking free speech that even 10 years ago would have been permitted on campuses. It”s such a very accelerated movement. There’s been a trend gone for a couple of decades where they don’t like it, but now they’re just not allowing it.
Well, and specifically the speech they attack is generally the things that are conservative, generally the things that are pro-faith, that are pro-family, and those are the things that statistically, genuinely were taught for the hundreds of years we had universities in America.
And so to say that they would have accepted it 10 years ago, well, arguably, they accepted it to the last several hundred years. It’s only been in the very recent years that they’ve opposed this.
And that’s where, and I mentioned gender identity if you believe that there are two sexual identities as the Bible identifies, there’s a male and there’s a female. Well, then that’s “hate speech” and you can’t have that kind of speech.
If you think marriage is a man and woman, “Well, that’s hate speech, and that’s bigoted, and you’re discriminatory.” And all these things that you get labeled. But professors have led this movement.
One of the things you see with these young people is that these young people, especially when they’re having some kind of riot or protest, they don’t do that of their own initiative. Somebody had to teach them this is what you do, this is how you do it.
And so somewhere in the back of the room, in the back of this protest, you have a professor, you have a parent, you have somebody who is smiling gleefully going, “This is wonderful. Just what we wanted.”
Berkeley Professors Assaulting Trump Supporters
But the protests are always geared against what’s constitutional, against a conservative value, whether it’s faith, whether it’s family, whether it’s traditional, or whatever. But this is the movement you see not just at Berkeley. Berkeley is a great example of it because of what happened there when Ann Coulter was scheduled to go out and speak and she’s going to come with this conservative movement.
Isn”t Berkeley where they just arrested the professor at Berkeley who was assaulting Trump supporters? He had taken a bicycle lock on the end of a chain and was swinging it like old mace. And I think the police just arrested a Professor at Berkeley who was wearing a mask but to going into Trump crowds and literally knocking people on the head with this flying piece of steel. I think it was a Berkeley professor.
And I’m sure that Professor was actually probably promoting tolerance and these Trump people were so hateful and bigoted they just couldn’t understand. So he thought, “What’s the best way to communicate love to this hateful tolerant crowd? I know, I’ll get a chain and a lock and I’ll start beating people with it.”
But this is the irony, the inconsistency of much of the argument we are hearing from these universities where they’re saying that we, the conservatives aren’t being tolerant enough. Â They’re not being this, and this and that.
Berkeley Protests And Riots Over Ann Coulter
So, Ann Coulter, a well-known conservative is supposed to go speak in Berkeley. And they had these big protests and riots because, “No, we can’t have a conservative come here.”
“We can’t even have them. We may not go to the meeting at all, but we can’t even have a presence here.” It’s one thing to say, “I disagree with you. I’m not going to show up your meeting.” And have the meeting if only three people show up. But, “We can’t even allow her to come here and express her viewpoint.”
Which is again, as Tim pointed out, it’s fulfillment Â by the professors. They’re the ones who are creating this intolerance in the name of progressive tolerance, which is just so wacky.
And like you’re saying Tim, it’s not just Berkeley, Â it’s campuses across the nation. It has become, really, not the exception to the rule but it”s become the norm.
Well, yeah, if you look at Notre Dame, when Mike Pence was there delivering the graduation ceremonial speech and all these seniors get up and they walk out of their own graduation, what they have, in theory, been working for several long hard years to achieve this defining moment. And they’re going to get up and leave their own celebration because “I don’t like the person that is speaking.”
Not, “I don’t like what he’s saying.” Because they didn’t even hear what he said to know if they agreed or disagreed. They said, “I’m going to get up and I’m going to leave. I’m not going to put up with this.” This is kind of the direction that university students are going and this is why they’re getting labeled “snowflakes” because they just can’t handle something that is contrary to their position and contrary to their thoughts.
But Berkeley was just a prime example of this. Â Which is of course, why we thought we have the Dr. Piper on a talk about this because he would be so good at dealing with this issue as we know he is.
And that Dr. Piper is Dr. Everett Piper. He’s the president of Oklahoma Wesleyan University and a frequent guest here on WallBuilders. So good at articulating the conservative position and just articulating common sense and in a world that seems to go insane way too often especially on those college campuses. So stay with us, Dr. Everett Piper with us when we return on WallBuilders Live.
Moments From America’s History
This is David Barton with another moment from America’s history. Today, numerous court decisions demonstrate that there’s often a conflict between the courts, the law, and religion. Has this conflict always existed?
Not according to James Wilson. Â James Wilson was a signer of both the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. He was a law professor as well as an original justice on the U.S. Supreme Court. James Wilson saw no conflict between religion and the law. In fact, just the contrary.
He declared, “Human law must rest its authority ultimately upon the authority of that law which is divine. Far from being rivals or enemies religion and law are twin sisters, friends, and mutual assistance. Â Indeed, these two sciences run into each other.”
In the views of Founding Father James Wilson religion and good civil law were inseparable. For more information on God’s hand in American history contact WallBuilders at 1 800 8 REBUILD.
Why These College Kids Are So Afraid
We”re back on WallBuilders Live. Our good friend Dr. Everett Piper back with us from Oklahoma Wesleyan University. Dr. Piper, great to have you back brother.
Rick, always a pleasure.
Hey, we were joking off air about Oklahoma Wesleyan as a true safe space of sanity, of common sense. Really appreciate what you guys are doing there as we watch just the intolerant version of the left’s tolerance all over the country on campuses.
Of course, the latest when Berkeley- and you got a great response to it, your article we”ll link to it today on WallBuilders Live, Â Bethlehem not Berkeley is the Birthplace of Free Speech. Man, tell us what’s going on. Why are they so afraid of even people like Ann Coulter just giving a speech?
Well, like you and I were just joking, this whole safe space movement, the trigger warnings, the micro aggressions, the call for safety, and the call to be coddled rather than to accept confrontation, that seems to be the moniker that the Millennials want to wear.
“We want to be safe. We don’t want to be confronted. You must coddle us. You must accept our thinking. You can’t challenge our ideas. And if you do, we will silence you.” And as I’ve said before on your program Rick, this is ideological fascism. Because it’s forced compliance and conformity. “You must be part of the group otherwise you’re expelled, you’re verboten, and you’re unwelcome.”
It’s ideological fascism and it’s the antithesis of academic and intellectual freedom. We have to recognize that there is only freedom in the context of God’s time tested truths. Rick:
Now, you mentioned that this is what Millennials want. But how much of this is the leadership’s fault for responding in this way? In other words, I mean the chancellor is the one that made the decision, right? So how much blame lies at the feet of the leadership?
The Terrible 20″s
A lot. Think of this, when you walk into the grocery store and you see a young mother or a young father for that matter, but they’ve got their first child. Â The mother is in her mid 20″s. Â She has a child who’s exercising his newfound identity as a terrible two. So he’s throwing a temper tantrum, kicking and screaming on the floor because he wants a $1 toy, or he wants a piece of candy.
If you see the mother coddle this kid you know very well what the outcome is going to be, a spoiled brat. And what we see right now is the terrible 20″s. We see the administration and the professors, the presidents of these universities. Â We see a culture that coddles. These kids through the terrible 20″s as they throw their terrible two temper tantrum.
And we should not be surprised at what we see as an outcome. We see more and more selfishness, self-absorption, and we see more and more of the tantrum, the demands, and the cry and the whine for safety, for candy if you will, rather than meat and rather than things that mattered in terms of making them mature and building a mature human being.
And that’s a great analogy, the terrible 20’s that we now face. You were about to say, I took you back to the chancellor and his decision. But you were starting to talk about where true freedom and free speech started and how that is not what’s happening on campuses. But give us that, I mean why do you say that Bethlehem is the birthplace of free speech?
Bethlehem, The Birth Place Of Free Speech
Again, the irony of what we’re dealing with right now, Rick, is that Ann Coulter and any other conservatives that the students or the professors don’t like are now being silenced and removed from campus. They can’t express their ideas.
And Berkeley is supposed to be the “Birthplace of the Free Speech Movement.” Â Well, that’s obviously not true. That’s why I titled my article, Bethlehem, not Berkeley is the Birthplace of Free Speech. Â And we see that in spades as you watch the news.
Free speech was founded some 2,000 years ago in a cradle in Bethlehem. It was not created on the coast of California. Free speech is grounded in the words, “You shall know the truth and the truth shall set you free.” Free speech was emblazoned across many a library and many universities. In the words of truth, in the words of Christ, “Truth Shall Set You Free.”
And the irony is that Berkeley has a Biblical motto. They may not know it, but their motto, their very official motto at Berkeley is, “Let there be light.” A reference to Scripture being the guiding light of a free society.
You can have no freedom without fences, you cannot have any liberty without law. You don’t get light unless you have illumination that’s objective, and permanent, and immutable, and true. Berkeley grounds it’s freedom in the truth of Christ and the truth of Scripture without knowing it. And when they abandon it they get fascism, not freedom, they get tyranny when they abandon truth.
I wonder how many of these liberal colleges today even have a clue, especially the students. But even the leadership of the campuses now occlude to the Christian foundations of their campus.
Oh, they don’t. Dozens, and I shouldn’t even say dozens, hundreds of motto’s on secular university seals and in their founding documents and then in their charters, hundreds of their mottos are grounded in a Biblical worldview.
We know that Dartmouth, and Princeton, and Yale, and Harvard, every institution in the Ivy league except one was grounded in a Biblical worldview, explicitly. Explicitly by virtue of their charter, their founding documents, their motto, and their charge. And we know this across the land that there is a repeated reference, a Biblical worldview as the context for true liberty.
Back to my first book, Why I’m a Liberal and other Conservative Ideas.Â You know why I titled it that? Â I’m the classical liberal because as a conservative, I believe in liberty and liberation. And I know you don’t have it outside the context of those self-evident truths that are endowed to us by the laws of nature and nature’s God.
They Wanted Freedom But Got Tyranny
For anyone that thinks “It doesn’t matter what happens on Berkeley. Â I don’t care about that kind of stuff.” I’ve got to read these two sentences from your article, “History has taught us time and again that political power always raises its angry fist when timeless principles are lost. We know that without the scale of self-evident truths grounded in the Laws of Nature and Nature’s God every culture eventually finds itself subject to the rule of the gang or the tyranny of the individual.”
Dr. Piper, this is such an important battle and we joke on the program all the time about the snowflakes, Â the safe spaces, and all that. But this has real consequences, it is leading a generation astray where they think they are being led into what they think is freedom, but they are really being led directly to tyranny.
Absolutely. My book that’s coming out in August, Not a Daycare, Why a Coddled Nation is a Crippled Nation makes that point, in fact, that is the point of the book. We must recognize that maturity and growth comes from confrontation and challenge, not from comfort and safety.
As I’ve said before on your program, the great lion Aslan was said to be good but not safe. And likewise, the great lion of the liberal arts, the great lion of the Constitution, the great lion of freedom is not safe but it is good. We have to recognize the difference between.
Dr. Everett Piper, Oklahoma Wesleyan University, we appreciate you, brother. Thanks for coming on again. Let’s get you back again soon. And definitely in August when that book comes out.
Thank you so much, Rick.
Stay with us, folks. Â We’ll be right back with David and Tim Barton.
Hey, guys, this is Tim Barton with WallBuilders. Â I know you hear my dad and Rick talk a lot about our Founding Fathers about the original intent of our nation, a constitutional heritage that we have. And really we’ve seen how far we slipped away from that. And I know a lot of us as we hear my dad and Rick talk think, “I wish there was a place that I could go where I could see these documents and I could read and learn about the Founding Fathers firsthand. Â See the things they did.”
I want to give you some websites today that can help you accomplish that very thing. If you get online you can go to places like Library of Congress and you can look under their century of lawmaking or historical documents. You can go to the Avalon Project, to the Founders Constitution, Google Books, or even the internet archives.
Or you can just go to WallBuilders.com. We have a section for our WallBuilders Library. And under that section we have different subgroups for historical documents, historical writings, even a place where you can get helpful links to find out more information about other websites. Â Where you can do research for yourself and find the truth for yourself. Friends, this is the time that we need to know who we are and where we came from. WallBuilders.com is a great place to go.
College’s Are Historically Grounded In Faith Â
Thanks for staying with us here on WallBuilders Live. We’re back with David and Tim Barton. Thanks to Dr. Piper for joining us. Â I always encourage folks to check out Oklahoma Wesleyan University. Y’all have already pointed out the craziness going on campuses. Â Well, there are some good campuses and that’s that is one of them.
You know, I was really struck. I didn’t realize Berkeley’s motto was, “Let there be light.” That’s Genesis 1:3, that’s a Bible quote.
So there must be some history there maybe we don’t know.
Well, here’s the history that’s there. Dr. Piper said hundreds of college mottos are based on the Bible. So, let me just throw up some stats for you. By 1860 there were 246 colleges in America only 17 of them were not affiliated with some denomination. So that’s 1860, which 17 out of 246, that’s roughly about six and a half to seven percent were not denomination affiliated.
EvenÂ Most Christian Colleges Aren’t Christian
And at that time saying, “There’s a denomination affiliated, that’s not like saying, “Baylor and Waco is affiliated with the Baptists.” Because you can go to Baylor and obviously have some not good experiences, you know, part of the football scandal nonsense going on. But even Texas Christian University, TCU-
Or TPCU, Texas Pseudo-Christian University.
Exactly. I went to seminary at TPCU and he had an atheist professor teaching one of his seminary classes.
From a historical standpoint, “The God is Dead Movement” came out of bright theological seminary at TCU in the 1960’s. So that “God is Dead Movement” wasn’t led by atheists, it was led by the theology department at TCU.
Well, it could have been atheist based on my friend having gone to seminary.Â But the point is-
Wait, one more thing on TCU while we’re picking on them. A buddy of mine said he did a tour there recently and they said, “The ‘C’ in TCU can be as big or small as you want it. We’ll tailor to you.”
That’s just the reality of the school. But that’s the reality of most schools today that have some religious affiliation. It’s so loosely affiliated that you really don’t see the religion there anymore, as opposed to back in the day, and as you’re mentioning 1860, at that point it would have been rather religious.
If they’re part of a denomination you have denominational heads that are there helping run and operate the schools, helping oversee the religious aspects to make sure that if a student comes here they’re going to learn how to be a Baptist, they’re going to learn how to be an Episcopal, they’re going to learn how to be a Methodist, they’re going to learn whatever the nomination is, they’re going to leave knowing the values those kind of tenets doctrines of faith of that denomination. Which is certainly not the perspective of those universities today.
Well, to reinforce that, going back to 1860 with 246 colleges in America, only a couple of dozen, or on the other hand 91% of those colleges had a gospel minister as the president of the university. Now, Baylor certainly doesn’t have a gospel ministers as it’s president nor does TCU.
But back in the day, in even a Civil War times, even in 1860 you had 91% of university presidents being gospel ministers. And then if you jump forward till 1884 in 1884 we had 370 colleges in America.
So it’s a lot more University.
A lot more. We’ve picked up now hundred 150 more universities and 83 percent of all universities in America were still denominational affiliated. And so you know, Berkeley is going to be one of those. And that’s why they, as Dr. Piper said, hundreds of them have mottos that are based on the Bible because that’s how they were founded. That’s how they operate.
And now look, what made them great they want to renounce completely and repudiate. They don’t even want anyone to tell them. And if someone comes on campus that believes what they were founded on, they don’t want to hear it.
And by the way, that’s why they call them snowflake’s because snowflake’s melts so quickly with the tiniest bit of heat. Just a little breath of air from your mouth and they melt. And that’s why they call them snowflakes, they can’t stand up to in a kind of heat whatsoever, can’t handle any kind of pressure from ideas they disagree with, Â that’s how weak we’ve become in this. And what’s happening there. And that’s why Dr. Piper and what they do at Wesleyan is so good.
Got to take a quick break, we’ll be right back. Stay with us, you’re listening to WallBuilders Live!
Hi friends! This is Tim Barton of WallBuilders.This is a time when most Americans don’t know much about American history or even heros of the faith. I know, oftentimes as parents, were trying to find good content for our kids to read.
If you remember back in the Bible, the Book of Hebrews it has the Faith Hall of Fame, where they outlined the leaders of faith that had gone before them. Well, this is something that as Americans we really want to go back and outline some of these heroes not just of American history, but heroes of Christianity and our faith as well.
I wanted to let you know about some biographical sketches we have available on our website. One is called, “The Courageous Leaders Collection“ and this collection includes people like Abigail Adams, Abraham Lincoln, Francis Scott Key, George Washington Carver, Susanna Wesley, even the Wright brothers.
There’s a second collection called, “Heroes of History“ in this collection you read about people like Benjamin Franklin, Christopher Columbus, Daniel Boone, George Washington, Harriet Tubman, the list goes on and on.
This is a great collection for your young person to have and read. And it’s a providential view of American and Christian history. This is available at WallBuilders.com.
Choose Your College Wisely
Welcome back, thanks for staying with us here on WallBuilders Live. Special thanks to Everett Piper for being with us earlier in the program. David, Tim, you were just talking about how this is prevalent across college campuses across the country.
I just have to point, I know this might be beating a dead horse because we’ve talked about it on our program a lot, but parents please be wise about where you send your kids and your money onto these college campuses.
I mean, there are not many out there. There are some good ones but there are not many that are literally going to try everything they can do to wipe out everything you taught your child. So just that warning I like to reissue that every once in a while.
Rick, you know I’ll even follow up, there are certainly things that Dr. Piper said that I would love to comment on. Dad, I know there’s more things you want to comment on also. But let me just, even to that end, Mike Rowe is someone who- if our listeners are not familiar with Mike Rowe, he has this big kick where he’s pushing for skills, and trade jobs, because there’s more than five million opportunities out there where people need employees that can fill those positions. Trade skill kind of jobs, there’s a huge gap. And so there’s opportunity outside of college.
Knowing The Purpose God Has For You
But I’ve spoken to several graduations at the end of this last school year and there were three points I challenge them with. My third point was based on Ephesians 5, “Walk in wisdom. We’re redeeming the time because the days are evil therefore don’t be foolish, be wise. Know what the will of God is.”
And I talked about how a lot of times in culture and society we go to college trying to discover what the will of God is for our life. And I point out, “Look, if you want to end up a hundred thousand dollars in debt just to find out the will of God is just give me a hundred thousand dollars and I’ll encourage you right now. I’ll tell you what the will of God is.”
We are presuming because- what happens is, we go to college and think, “If I can get to college then I’ll find out what God has for me.” You find out what God has for you not by going to an institution, but by spending time with the guy that created you.
And one of the things that certainly God has done is God always equips us for what God calls us to do. Therefore, if we know that God equips us for what he calls us to do we should look at how he’s equipped us.
So I told these graduating seniors, “Look at your gifting, your skills, your talents, your abilities, and based on how God gifts you, that might be the direction you ought to start looking. But you shouldn’t go to college and pick eight different majors to Â try this field and that field and all you’re doing is running up debt and not really getting anywhere.”
But the challenge was to walk in wisdom. And so often we have kids that are going to college because that’s the next step of your life. Well, the irony is, college used to be where you went to get a higher education but it so it could set you apart and to better equip you.
Well, now the norm is to get a college degree. So instead of it setting you apart it just makes you normal now. So having that degree doesn’t necessarily better equipped you. Now, if you’re going to be a doctor and there’s something you’re going to specialize in degrees makes sense. But so often we just look at college as, “This is just the next step, and this is what you have to do, and this is where you find purpose, and identity.” And that’s just not what happens at most universities.”
And to reinforce that, right now only one out of every four seniors who graduates with a degree ends up getting a job in that degree. There are so many degrees that are completely irrelevant. We did a program some time back looking at degrees offered by universities.
There are degrees in bowling, there are degrees in golf course management, those are high demand areas. I bet there’s 12 jobs, you know? I mean that’s what colleges are doing now. And Tim’s right, if you don’t get focused before you get there you’ll have a huge debt that is going to take you a decade or two to get rid of that debt and you still won’t have a clue which is supposed to do and you’re no longer different from everybody else.
And so that’s one of the things that universities are not doing is what they were actually raised up to do at the beginning and that has helped you find God’s will. And that’s why they had those Biblical mottos like Berkeley did, “Let there be light.” Come to here and we’ll help to give light on what God wants you to do, but not now. And certainly encourage students to in that 18, 19, 20, 21 age range to attend High Point. Attend the semester-long program they have there, I guess to Tim, it’s nine months?
Is it nine months. The leaders Academy Leaders Academy is a nine-month training program. Obviously, we do an intern program, you have Patriot Academy, there’s so many things that young people can get involved in, get plugged into, and get some good practical training equipping and even God’s direction for their life.
Yes, that’s right. Before they go off and spend money on the college thing as well. So lots of great opportunities there. Thanks again to Piper for joining us. Thank you for listening, you’ve been listening to WallBuilders Live!