Cultural Revolutions

A Politically Incorrect University

Texas A & M, founded in 1876, is one of those educational entities a certain kind of Texan recoils from praising too lavishly—the kind of Texan who went to the rival University of Texas and grew up deriding the Aggies as abrasive bumpkins.

Traditions, masticated like a chaw of first-rate ’baccy, are hard to put aside—at least until the liberals seek to join in the fun, upon which the preservation of bumpkinhood becomes an object of  missionary purpose.  A University of Texas graduate, that is to say, can feel the duty of speaking out against ongoing efforts to make Texas A&M over in the image of—well, who knows; maybe the University of Texas.

Every state is entitled to at least one politically incorrect (generally speaking) university.  In President Bush’s home state, that means A&M—the home of his father’s presidential library.  Thirty-five years ago, the Aggies wouldn’t let in girls.  Everybody belonged to the Corps of Cadets and earned a commission on graduation.  Aggies, by tradition, stood throughout football games.  They kissed their dates when the team scored.  Seniors wore riding boots and carried sabers. They hailed primarily from farms and small towns; they brought to campus the entirely laughable (it was argued against them) values of those venues.  They were squares, in short, in the eyes of the sophisticates who...

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