In the last twenty years a body of “social justice educators” has come to power in American higher education. These professors and administrators are transforming higher education into advocacy for progressive politics. They also work to reserve higher education jobs for social justice advocates, and to train more social justice advocates for careers in nonprofit organizations, K–12 education, and social work ….
Justice traditionally judges freely chosen individual acts, but social justice judges how far the distribution of economic and social benefits among social groups departs from how they “ought” to be distributed. Practically, social justice also justifies the exercise of the state’s coercive power to distribute “fairly” goods that include education, employment, housing, income, health care, leisure, a pleasant environment, political power, property, social recognition, and wealth.
[Further assumed is] society is divided into social identity groups defined by categories such as class, race, and gender; that any “unfair distribution” of goods among these groups is oppression; and that oppression can only – and must – be removed by a coalition of “marginalized” identity groups working to radically transform politics, society, and culture to eliminate privilege ….
Social justice education rejects the idea that classes should aim at teaching a subject matter for its own sake, or seek to foster students’ ability to think, judge, and write as independent goods. Social justice education instead aims directly at creating effective social justice activists, ideally engaged during class in such activism. Social justice education transforms the very definitions of academic disciplines—first to permit the substitution of social justice activism for intellectual endeavor, and then to require it ….
The ideal of social justice does not complement the ideal of education. The ideal of social justice replaces the ideal of education.
Justice Studies goes well-beyond the study of crime, law, and the criminal justice system. Its focus is within a more expansive economic, political, and social context, including issues of economic inequality, institutional racism, classism, sexism, corporate and state power; environmental; war and state violence; environmental harm; consumerism and commodification; corporate media influence; and struggles over space, place, and territory. The intended Justice Studies program will equip students with a comprehensive knowledge of the world's justice systems and provide them the advanced-level knowledge and skills to create meaningful, real-world change.