Prepare for some fanboyism...
What a load of utter crap. What they're saying is, programmers aren't as hardcore and uber-nerdy about piddly little details as they used to be, and these old-timers don't like it.
So what they're really saying is, someone's made a decent language where you don't HAVE to care about that shite, and that's a bad thing. Well, sorry lads, some of us got bored of having to worry about constant pointer issues and memory leaks.
I've used many many languages over the years, starting with BASIC and Pascal, moving on through web languages like PHP to C++ and finally to Java (via a gazillion others). And of them all, Java is the one that impresses me the most. Contrary to the opinions of these morons, it's flexible beyond belief. Want an app for a mobile phone? Perhaps your wristwatch? A website? Or maybe you'd like to code up a scalable enterprise banking system instead?
Sure, you don't get down to the really hardcore stuff as much, but that's kind of the point of Java - why the hell would you want to when someone's written a perfectly good library already? With the wonders of proper OO, you can just drop in a free-licence library and save yourself a ton of time and effort. How can that not be brilliant?
And how can using a very well structured, strongly typed, flexible language undermine good practice? If you don't follow good practice in Java, your program's likely to be crap. Or not even compile, for that matter.
I'm sorry, but their remarks are nonsense. Especially the one about "not knowing how to build programs without a graphical interface." That one made me laugh. On my University course they taught us how to code servlets and the like before they taught us how to code with Swing.
Truth is, take any student that has sat a "programming course," having never done programming before or outside the course, and they will still know sod all about programming in most languages when they come out. There's only so much you can teach, and there's such a vast amount to learn. Of course they don't know everything - that comes with experience. And obviously the course tutors are going to settle on a language that a) they like, and b) will be useful to the students in the future. And that's Java. (No matter how a certain over-enthusiastic lecturer at Leeds Uni wishes it was Python. Don't worry, we're getting him treatment.)
I wouldn't mind them teaching C++. Really, I wouldn't. It's not a crap language. It's just that...well...Java's better. By miles.
Right, rant over. Back to fiddling with PHP 4 and wishing it was PHP 5.