Oxford University has overhauled a core history exam, citing low performance by female students. Officials from the prestigious university, often regarded as the top in the world in history, are allowing students to take the difficult test from home rather than the classroom. This move has been attacked from all sides.
According to reports, the change was made in part to an apparent “gender grade gap” in which 32% of female students received a first class degree, compared to 37% of male students. This second-year exam was once taken under strict rules and professor supervision. Now, it can be done from the comfort of the student’s home, ramen in hand. This, of course, carries with it an increased likelihood of cheating and plagiarism., which is still being planned, will likely be untimed as well.
Not only has this decision drawn ire from conservatives for playing into gender politics and kowtowing to third-wave feminism, it has also been called insulting by a leading historian, Amanda Foreman. She and others say this change assumes women to be weak and unable to endure the stress of taking a tough exam in the classroom. Critics say that while the school claims to battle sexism, Oxford coddles women rather than encouraging them to work hard and persevere alongside their male classmates.
Similar arguments were made in regards to women in combat positions in the military. Because of biological differences between men and women, the physical requirements were very difficult for the majority of women to meet. In response, the military lowered standards. Not only does this serve to weaken America’s fighting force, it also sends a message that women must be catered to and standards must be lowered to accommodate them.
While there are women that are no doubt strong enough to meet the original physical requirements for combat positions, they are in the minority. This is all done in an effort to spread the lie that men and women are the same, rather than admit that men and women have different strengths and that women have unique skills that the majority of men do not have. After all, this complementary relationship is what has driven the human race, and society, forward.
There’s an old story about the legendary outlaw country singer Waylon Jennings wherein his then-wife told his daughter “Women can do anything men can do, and don’t let any man or woman tell you any different.” Waylon cracked a grin, turned to his son and said, “ask them if they can piss in a bottle without getting any on the side.” While this is obviously a tongue-in-cheek example, it makes a point. At the very foundation, men and women are different. This does not mean they are unequal. Equality is not sameness. Women, in their empathetic and more reserved nature, can serve as a balance to the tenacity and bullheaded nature of men. While liberals fight to make men and women the same (in their minds, equal), womanhood is sacrificed for a caricature of masculinity that is an insult to the female gender.
This exam and the gender grade gap is not the first instance in which Oxford’s history department was thrust into the spotlight because of social justice causes. School faculty recently caved to a group of students who demanded history students be forced to take a black history test. This came in the wake of a controversy over a statue of Cecil Rhodes and his imperialist connections. The university refused to remove the statue and students cried racism. These same students claimed the history program was far too “ethnocentric” and demanded the additional test.
As is always the case with the demands of protesters, the minority history test was not enough. Students who demanded the test went on to complain about the university meeting those demands because it reflected negatively on Oxford in the public eye. The campaigners who railed on about the oppressive nature of a historical statue called media coverage “sensational” without a hint of self-awareness.
The modern college student must fight to remain perpetual victims. This means that even when progressive colleges and universities cater to their demands, they must find a new form of oppression to maintain their victimhood. The campaigners demanded greater change be made, though they have not specified exactly what those changes are. Sooner or later, universities like Oxford will learn that these students are not philanthropists in search of harmony, but fascists and Marxists aiming to force their agenda on everyone. Enough will never be enough, and they will cannibalize the very institutions that created them.