The burying of a college admissions scandal

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The burying of a college admissions scandal

USC School of Cin­e­matic Arts, from Wikimedia

So there’s a pretty big col­lege admis­sions scan­dal being uncov­ered right now. Eight uni­ver­si­ties took mil­lions of dol­lars in bribes to admit kids of rich par­ents. Yet search­ing for it in the news is sur­pris­ingly difficult.

On Google News, all the sto­ries are lumped into the “Enter­tain­ment” sec­tion, which requires con­sid­er­able scrolling to get to. Sto­ries are on CNN.com’s page, but the short title is “How alleged col­lege scam came to light,” with no men­tion of rich kids or admis­sions. Bernie’s head injury got more text than this. CNBC has a more com­plete head­line under Busi­ness News, and even Fox News has it buried near the bot­tom of its main page.

Given the mas­sive atten­tion paid by par­ents to get­ting kids in the right schools, and given the crazy increases in col­lege spend­ing that drive col­lege debt (a prob­lem crush­ing the Mil­len­nial Gen­er­a­tion right now), this should be top news. In terms of affect­ing every day life for most Amer­i­cans, this is more sig­nif­i­cant than fake news about the Pres­i­dent and Russia.

Yet even the arti­cles aren’t full of anger. Besides show­ing the facts, the opin­ion arti­cles say things like “Col­leges should do what they want!” and “Peo­ple being rich is a scan­dal, not the admis­sions process,” and even “Col­leges should use this to dou­ble down on diver­sity.

Folks, col­leges that hap­pily accepted fed­eral money, increased prices and passed on debt to future gen­er­a­tions while con­tin­u­ing to turn out less and less actual edu­ca­tion just got caught cheat­ing on admis­sions. This is the one place where a kid that is smart, but maybe not well to do, should be able to achieve the Amer­i­can dream. We just proved that process is a bald-​faced lie.

We should be out­raged. That we aren’t speaks vol­umes about us.

This post rep­re­sents the views of the author and not those of the Depart­ment of Defense, Depart­ment of the Navy, or any other gov­ern­ment agency.

USC School of Cinematic Arts, from Wikimedia

So there’s a pretty big college admissions scandal being uncovered right now. Eight universities took millions of dollars in bribes to admit kids of rich parents. Yet searching for it in the news is surprisingly difficult.

On Google News, all the stories are lumped into the “Entertainment” section, which requires considerable scrolling to get to. Stories are on CNN.com’s page, but the short title is “How alleged college scam came to light,” with no mention of rich kids or admissions. Bernie’s head injury got more text than this. CNBC has a more complete headline under Business News, and even Fox News has it buried near the bottom of its main page.

Given the massive attention paid by parents to getting kids in the right schools, and given the crazy increases in college spending that drive college debt (a problem crushing the Millennial Generation right now), this should be top news. In terms of affecting every day life for most Americans, this is more significant than fake news about the President and Russia.

Yet even the articles aren’t full of anger. Besides showing the facts, the opinion articles say things like “Colleges should do what they want!” and “People being rich is a scandal, not the admissions process,” and even “Colleges should use this to double down on diversity.

Folks, colleges that happily accepted federal money, increased prices and passed on debt to future generations while continuing to turn out less and less actual education just got caught cheating on admissions. This is the one place where a kid that is smart, but maybe not well to do, should be able to achieve the American dream. We just proved that process is a bald-faced lie.

We should be outraged. That we aren’t speaks volumes about us.

This post represents the views of the author and not those of the Department of Defense, Department of the Navy, or any other government agency.