Publisher’s Letter: The Tory’s Mission at Princeton


Greetings, Tory readers! My name is David Byler, and I am the new Publisher of the Princeton
Tory. I am both honored and excited to assume the duties of Publisher for this upcoming year.
The first order of business is to thank Toni Alimi, the Publisher Emeritus of The Tory, for all the
hard work he did on the magazine last year. He is a smart, dedicated leader and his presence will
be missed.

Since this is my first issue as Publisher, I have been thinking about the mission of The Tory
and how to best carry it out. Our goal is to put every Princeton student into regular contact
with conservative thought in its strongest and most relevant form. In carrying this out, The
Tory contributes to the broader effort of conservative intellectuals to change the perception of
conservatism. While many Princetonians view conservatism as an obsolete philosophy grounded
in the mistaken ideas of the past, we at The Tory strive to show that it is in fact a vibrant, relevant
philosophy that promises a better way forward than the alternatives. Our hope is that The
Tory provides examples of good, relevant conservative arguments to Princeton students, thus
replacing some of the negative perceptions of the philosophy with examples of how conservative
thought works well .

The articles in this issue do exactly that. In our cover story, John Paul Spence argues for
the value of a strong core curriculum founded on the Western Canon. This exemplifies the
esteem that many conservatives hold for past thinkers in a way that is relevant to our daily
education. Peter Kunze also points out the strong points of the new book “What is Marriage?
Man and Woman: A Defense” (co-written by Professor Robert George and Princeton alumni
Sherif Girgis and Ryan Andersen) while also noting some of the weaknesses in the argument.
Margaret Fortney points out the limits of science and criticizes the application of scientism in
politics. Additionally, while Josh Zuckerman does not take an explicitly conservative stance,
he rigorously engages Politics Professor Alan Ryan with questions about his life, experience,
political thought, and advice for Princeton students. Finally, Ben Koons shows how the “Love
and Lust in the Bubble” series in The Daily Princetonian showcases what happens to people
without a coherent philosophy regarding love, sex and romance in their daily lives. While these
articles tackle widely different themes, they all contain high-quality material and are relevant to
Princeton students and in that way push forward towards improving the narrative surrounding
conservatism on campus.

Perceptions about conservatism will not be changed overnight. Nor do I expect The Tory to
single-handedly alter those perceptions. I do have high hopes for what we can accomplish this
year though, and a large part of that hope is grounded in the new officer corps. Each officer is
dedicated, talented and well-qualified to do their job. Building six magazines from the ground
up in a year is no small feat, but our team has the exact right mix of skills, personalities and
perspectives to do it well.

It is my hope that The Tory will continue to provide nuanced and intellectually robust articles
that are pertinent and challenging to students. More than that, I want The Tory to change the
conversation surrounding politics, philosophy and life here on campus. Conservatism deserves
a fair hearing and a strong voice here at Princeton, and I’m excited about what The Tory will be
doing this year to work towards that goal.


David Byler

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One thought on “Publisher’s Letter: The Tory’s Mission at Princeton

  • June 5, 2013 at 12:23 am

    David Byler is a conservative.


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