Welcome Renegades! The majority of our classes are online for Spring 2021. A few essential courses are face-to-face with safety protocols. All services have moved online and physical campuses are closed.
Visit the COVID-19 page for up-to-date information.

Bakersfield College

Logo of liberty bell shape with stars and stripes of the US flag.

The Renegade Institute for Liberty

The Renegade Institute for Liberty promotes diversity of thought and intellectual literacy through the free and open discourse of American ideals, including civil, economic, and religious freedom.

About the Renegade Institute for Liberty

The Renegade Institute for Liberty is a coalition of Bakersfield College faculty dedicated to the free speech, open inquiry, critical thinking to advance American ideals within the broader Western tradition of meritocracy, individual agency, civic virtue, liberty of conscience and free markets. These ideologies underpin the American Experiment, long serving as the nation’s primary bulwark against the political and ideological tyranny of both individuals and of the masses. As an advocate for intellectual literacy and diversity, the Renegade Institute for Liberty reaffirms civil, religious, and economic freedom upon which the academe and the nation must stand or fall. Through intellectual exploration and reason, the Institute works to preserve each of the above virtues as necessary for a free people and to advance the cause of liberty in America.

Functioning as a resource to students, faculty, and community members dedicated to the expansion of liberty in Kern County and America, the faculty associated with the Renegade Institute host a variety of activities, including but not limited to guest speakers, debates, colloquia, seminars, conferences, book clubs, brownbag discussions, film screenings, and student awards.

"I know no safe depository of the ultimate powers of the society, but the people themselves: and if we think them not enlightened enough to exercise their controul with a wholsome discretion, the remedy is, not to take it from them, but to inform their discretion by education. this is the true corrective of abuses of constitutional power."
~Thomas Jefferson to William Charles Jarvis, 28 September 1820

Donate to the Cause

Support intellectual diversity by donating to the Renegade Institute for Liberty at Bakersfield College. Your investment will directly fund programing including nationally recognized speakers, conferences, brown bag discussions, and more. Please help promote traditional American ideals at Bakersfield College and throughout Kern County with your tax-deductible donation today!

Donate Online through Bakersfield College Foundation. Select "Other" in the dropdown menu for your response to "You may specify the fund your donation is applied to:" Please type "Institute for Liberty" in the "If other, please specify:" field. BC employees may submit a payroll deduction form to the BC Foundation.

Upcoming Events

David Schein, PhD.
The Decline of America
Postponed - Date TBD 

Ongoing Activities

The Student Scholar Program. invites students to participate in a guided reading and small group discussion facilitated by a Renegade Institute for Liberty affiliated faculty. The 2021 focal text is Debunking Howard Zinn: Exposing the Fake History that Turned a Generation Against America, by Mary Grabar (2019). From Zinn's FBI dossier to adoration from celebrities and academics, Grabar traces the ideological inspirations and consequences of one of history's greatest frauds. Interested students should contact Dr. Daymon Johson

Past Events

Wilfred Reilly, PhD.
Taboo: Race and Other Topics You Just Can't Talk About (remote broadcast)
Thursday, February 18, 2021

No Safe Spaces: You Have the Right to Remain Silent (documentary film screening)
featuring Adam Carolla & Dennis Prager
Tuesday, December 1, 2020

Victor Davis Hanson, PhD.
The West (remote broadcast)
Tuesday, Sept 29, 2020

Matthew Garrett, PhD.
A Tale of Two Protests: Free Speech and the Intellectual Origins of Campus Censorship
Thursday, September 12, 2019

Carol Swain, PhD.
Black Faces, Black Interests: The Representation of African Americans in Congress
Thursday, February 7, 2019

Christina Sommers, PhD. 
Who Stole Feminism? How Women have Betrayed Women
Thursday, October 11, 2018

Committed Faculty

  1. Matthew Garrett, PhD, Professor of History (faculty lead)
  2. Tim BohanProfessor of Education
  3. Ximena Da Silva Tavares, PhD, Professor of Chemistry
  4. Jason Dixon, Professor of Engineering Technology
  5. John Giertz, PhD, Professor of Communication
  6. Michael Harvath, PhD, Professor of Economics
  7. Daymon Johnson, PhD, Professor of History
  8. Chad Newton, Professor of Biology
  9. Kimberly Newton, Professor of Biology
  10. Teresa McAllister, Professor of Education
  11. Erin Miller, Professor of History
  12. David Neville, Professor of Foreign Languages
  13. Joe Saldivar, PhD, Professor of Biology 
  14. Kenward Vaughan, PhD, Professor of Chemistry

Recommended Readings


Visit the Renegade Institute for Liberty page on Bakersfield College LibGuides for links to information about Western Democratic Traditions and American ideals.

The following links will open in a new window.

Greek & Roman Thought

The Early Republic

Contemporary Critiques

  • Wood, The Radicalism of the American Revolution (1991)
  • Sowell, The Vision of the Anointed (1995)
  • Maier, American Scripture: Making the Declaration of Independence (1998)
  • Peterson, Maps of Meaning (1999)
  • Borjas, Heaven's Door (1999)
  • Putnam, Bowling Alone (2000)
  • George, Great Cases in Constitutional Law (2000)
  • Sowell, Black Rednecks and White Liberals (2005)
  • Shlaes, The Forgotten Man (2007)
  • Ferrara, Liberty: The God that Failed (2012)
  • Bawer, The Victims' Revolution (2012)
  • Murray, Coming Apart: The State of White America (2012)
  • Putnam, American Grace (2012)
  • Shapiro, Bullies: How the Left's Culture of Fear... (2013)
  • George, Conscience and its Enemies (2013)
  • Sowell, Intellectuals and Race (2013)
  • Sheehan, The Mind of James Madison (2014)
  • D'Souza, America: Imagine a World Without Her (2014)
  • Kibbe, Don't Hurt People (2014)
  • Jones, Magna Carta: The Birth of Liberty (2015)
  • Sowell, Wealth, Poverty and Politics (2015)
  • Freedman, A Less Perfect Union (2015)
  • Hanson, The Decline and Fall of California (2015)
  • Riley, Please Stop Helping Us (2016)
  • McClanahan, 9 Presidents Who Screwed Up America (2016)
  • Vance, Hillbilly Elegy (2016)
  • Borjas, We Wanted Workers (2016)
  • Peterson, 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos (2018)
  • Sowell, Discrimination and Disparities (2018)
  • D'Souza, Plantation Politics... (2018)
  • May, Jefferson's Treasure: How Albert Gallatin... (2018)
  • Scruton, Conservationism: An Invitation... (2018)
  • Reilly, Taboo: 10 Facts You Can't Talk About (2020)