Presidential candidate and Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul, along with the conservative group Leadership Institute, have started an online petition calling for the liberation of America's universities and colleges from the influence of "liberal extremists."
Even though the petition is not clear on what specific actions signers are endorsing, it acknowledges that "liberal radicals" have controlled universities in the United States "for more than a generation," and because of that, it has led many of America's inspiring young minds to embrace a more secular and liberal worldview.
"Join Sen. Rand Paul — sign the national petition to save our students!" the petition urges. "Whereas, these institutions of higher learning have become little more than left-wing indoctrination centers dedicated to brainwashing the next generation of America's leaders."
The petition goes on to state that students in American universities today deserve to be freed from "liberal oppression."
"Whereas, the conservative movement owes it to our young people to fight to liberate our colleges and universities from this liberal oppression," the petition asserts. "Therefore, Be It Resolved, that I do hereby support Senator Rand Paul and the Leadership Institute's fight to save our students through a massive program of organization, training, and support. No more retreating. It's time to liberate our college campuses!"
In February, The Christian Post spoke with Dr. Peter Lillback, president of the Westminster Theological Seminary, and he explained that the liberal transformation of America's universities started to occur at the turn of the 20th century.
"When you get to the 1890s with the Holy Trinity case, you get to the highwater mark for Judeo-Christian value structure," Lillback said. "But at this point, this is where we begin to see the movement from the very highest levels beginning to de-christianize the universities."
Lillback stated that before atheism became a dominant worldview of many students coming out of these universities, half of the board members of public universities in the United States were clergy members because "they saw that as a vital expression of maintaining a moral and spiritual component to the higher education."
"They began to push theological and seminary studies out of the universities and replaced it with the study of religions. They said it would be a neutral, non-confessional perspective," Lillback said. "Over time, it become more and more committed, not to deism, but ultimately a form of practical atheism, to where atheism became the prevailing view of our universities. That begins to take hold in the progressive era in the early 1900s."
The transformation of America's colleges escalated even further during the latter parts of the 20th century to the extent that bible reading and prayer became a nonexistent part of the public education process, Lillback said.
"We get to the second half of the 20th century and these view become enshrined significantly enough in American culture that they begin to [repeal] what had been the normal practice for the whole history of America," Lillback said. "That included prayer, bible reading, religious instruction from the Judeo-Christian perspective in schools and public institutions. And, we find the removal of the Bible from the public school and the removal of prayer from the public school."
Lillback added that the removal of the religious point of view from public colleges and universities has led to the modern assertion that Christian convictions against same-sex marriage and abortion are nothing more than bigotry.
"As that begins to take place, there are other changes that begin to take root," Lillback continued. "Like the changing of moral values and beginning to say that abortion is legal. What was once called sodomy is now called expressional individualism and sexual liberty. Now the idea of maintaining the ideas of the moral Christian values is construed as hate speech through decisions that have been made by our government."