Hard Times at Snowflake U
At some point, America's high schools, liberals arts colleges, and universities got taken over by Leftist radicals, who starting in the 1960s had burrowed into the system as eternal graduate students and who gradually emerged, like parasites, to devour their hosts. The result has been increasingly politicized, feminized institutions that, in many cases, bear almost no resemblance to their original incarnations besides their names. They've become an expensive parody of education, some costing into six figures per year, all in. Obsessed with "social justice," they bristle with diversity administrators and other barnacles; teaching has become secondary to the schools' primary mission of ideological indoctrination; and the diploma has become simply a very expensive certificate of attendance, different from a mail-order diploma mill only in the prestige of the name on the piece of paper.
Okay, okay, we all know that by now. But what we didn't know for sure -- but were certainly beginning to suspect -- is that all this "education" is also making our kids crazy:
It is supposed to be the time of their life—the halcyon days of college, when young adults grow, acquire knowledge, and learn new skills. But according to the 2016–17 Healthy Minds Study, an annual survey of mental health on American college campuses, while 44 percent of students said that they were flourishing, 39 percent reported experiencing symptoms of depression or anxiety. The proportion of students experiencing suicidal ideation has grown from six percent in 2007 to 11 percent in 2017. The percentage of students receiving psychotherapy has jumped from 13 percent to 24 percent over the same period. Even though more students are getting help, only a little more than half of those with symptoms of depression and anxiety had received treatment in the previous year.
The rise in mental health challenges is not limited to college students. One in every four adults in the United States will suffer from an anxiety disorder in the course of his or her lifetime, and suicide rates for men and women have risen since 2000. Whether these figures are a passing trend, the new normal, or a harbinger of greater challenges to come, one cannot fully know. But no matter what, universities need to deal with this uptick in psychological distress. No longer can they consider students’ mental health to be outside their area of responsibility.
This story by Sylvia Mathews Burwell in Foreign Affairs seems to me to have the wrong end of the stick. The snowflakes streaming into the shrinks' offices have, in some cases, literally been driven mad by the "intellectual" atmosphere they've been marinating in for years. Further, she accepts with credulity the value of "mental health professionals," most of whom never met someone who was not also, in their eyes, a prospective "patient." When you have a degree in psychiatry or psychology, everybody looks like a nut to you.