“Clearcut:” Culture Wars in Nearby Philomath, Oregon
I half-watched a documentary last night about the clash between old-time timber folks and newer urban refugees in the nearby town of Philomath. Every high school graduate once had their college tuition funded by a guaranteed scholarship from a local timber baron’s foundation. But the foundation threatened to cut the purse strings as the school board drifts in a more liberal pro-environment direction, as previously unheard of things like gay student groups spring up at the local high school. They scaled the scholarship back to only apply to second-generation Philomath residents who would study traditional timber-related fields. The major flash-point occurred in 2005, when the foundation suspended grants for any students attending Oregon State University, ironically the ag school just down the road. OSU was “using education to indoctrinate studwents with the socialist ideology of the Global Green Parties,” the film quotes the foundation. Not sure what the current state of the scholarship program is, since the Clemens Foundation doesn’t appear to have a website.
You can hear more about the culture wars in Philomath here.