Soon, I will have to create a club for the last remaining practitioners of the belief that college is a place of work and not a place of consumption.
I was brought up to believe that school is work. Not a place where you come to purchase qualifications that will prepare you for work but actual work. I always expected my professors to treat me as (young, inexperienced, largely ignorant but still) a colleague, an equal. And they did that, for which I am grateful.
The workplace is changing, however. Instead of a place where all of us come to develop personally, intellectually and professionally, it has become a space where the lucky few manage to peddle their foibles and weirdnesses while everyone else watches them on TV, simultaneously fearing and aspiring to their lifestyle.
College prepares students for the post-work mentality by telling them that the public space is dead. It has been colonized by sloppy, unschooled, gushing emotions to the extent that everything is now located within the realm of the private.
Political activism has been substituted by feel-good hashtagging, and Trump is leading in the polls as a result of offering emotional release instead of inviting voters to engage intellectually. If the classroom has been turned into a place where we are directed to emote before we even try to learn anything, why would the voting booth be any different?
And only the few old farts like myself are grumpily refusing to participate in the collective Emote-fest and insist that it might not be a bad idea to preserve a tiny little space that will not be fully occupied by irrationality.