Tennessee lawmaker walks back call to abolish higher education, stands by critique of universities


A Tennessee lawmaker who said he supports getting rid of higher education walked back his comments on Tuesday but reaffirmed his critique of American universities.

“While the call for eliminating higher education was clearly hyperbole, I stand behind my general critique of liberal arts education in America one hundred percent,” Tennessee State Senator Kerry Roberts (R-Springfield) said in a release Tuesday.

Sen. Roberts called for eliminating higher education while speaking about attending a recent abortion legislative hearing on his conservative radio talk show on Sept. 2.

Roberts reiterated his critique of higher education in the release Tuesday.

“Many higher education institutions have unquestionably become liberal breeding grounds where radical values and hatred for America are fomented. Conservative parents are often spending (or borrowing) tens if not hundreds of thousands of dollars to participate in an elaborate bait and switch. They sign up their children for education and advancement and instead receive intimidation and indoctrination.”

“It’s time for conservatives – whose taxpayer dollars significantly fund these institutions of higher education – to rise up and demand the restoration of balance in our halls of higher education.”

“Do we literally need to abolish higher education in America? Of course not. There are institutions that have found balance and they are to be applauded. But it’s time for lawmakers to question the efficacy of higher education in America, meaningless majors, liberal bias, and intolerance of traditional values and conservative points of view.”

Roberts also previously questioned funding higher education with tax dollars. He voted in favor of the state’s $38.5 billion budget earlier this year, which included money for colleges and universities.

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