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The 'Christian School' Image of Pepperdine

April 01, 1993

I was very interested to read the interview with David Davenport, president of Pepperdine (Times, March 7). Davenport appears to be a very high-caliber, principled individual.

I was rather dismayed to see the interviewer question Davenport about the "Christian school" perception of Pepperdine and the "Republican university" reputation of the school. I wonder if Ron Russell would have queried the chancellor of the UC system or the president of Stanford about their reputations as hotbeds of radicalism and the inability of any speaker other than the "politically cleansed" to speak on campus without fear of being shouted down and attacked. These universities and the vast majority in the nation remain the last bastions of Marxism and amoral, unprincipled and undisciplined behavior!

Davenport responded that Pepperdine had (state Sen.) Tom Hayden (D-Santa Monica) on campus to speak a few times, as well as (Rep.) Maxine Waters (D-Los Angeles) and Senate Majority Leader (George J.) Mitchell (D-Me.). I'm sure they were received with courtesy, which is certainly not the case when Jeane Kirkpatrick, Dan Quayle or Jack Kemp would be invited to any UC campus, Stanford or most other universities. They aren't "politically cleansed" and therefore freedom of speech does not apply to them!

I only hope that President Davenport doesn't allow Pepperdine to waver from the "Christian school, Republican university" reputation. It's refreshing to know there are still some universities where parents can send their child without fear of getting back a radical, value-bankrupt graduate.

CURTIS BAER

Pacific Palisades

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