As “critical race theory” (CRT) seeps into more and more into school curricula some state governments are fighting back. Capital cities all across the nation have been busy the past month introducing and passing legislation that discourages the practice of teaching divisive theories like CRT in public schools.
CRT began as a training exercise for school teachers and asserts that the U.S. has a despicable racial past that needs to be systemically corrected. It also says if you’re white you are inherently racist. The controversial and dissonant theory got a significant boost when a writer for New York Times Magazine, Nikole Hannah-Jones, originated a doctrine dubbed the “1619 Project” (the Project).
The Project postulates, among other things, that the history of the U.S. began not in 1776, when the Declaration of Independence was published, but in 1619 when the first slave ship arrived. Americans wanted to begin the nation not to form a more perfect union, the Project says, but to preserve slavery.
The dangerous, Marx-inspired CRT affirms this. It too proclaims America is inherently and systematically racist. It promotes the idea that it’s shameful to be white-skinned and unless you repudiate your Anglo-centric ethnicity and conform to a prescribed remedy – like reparations – you are racist.
It’s growing popular in corporate boardrooms too. Recently, Armour and Coca Cola were among companies subjecting executives to CRT training and the Cartoon Network broadcast a CRT public service announcement to its viewers.
But, as CRT is spreading beyond the halls of academic institutions – and into the regular regimens of federal government, public schools and the corporate world – governments, schools and some corporations are saying “no thanks”.
According to Christopher Rufo of The Discovery Institute, and anti-CRT champion, 14 states have successfully introduced legislation that outlaws policies like CRT. (Most bills settled on the term “divisive concepts” to describe the standard to be prohibited for use in public agency protocols or school curricula.)
Rufo also reports that just days ago the Walt Disney Company withdrew its “diversity” and “inclusion” programs from its website – virtually removing all traces of CRT. Rufo attributes Disney’s action to aggressive reporting and the wider public attention to the issue it wrought.
If Rufo is right – that awareness can kill the CRT movement where it lives and breathes – then there is the hope that the “sour on CRT” crusade doesn’t fizzle but instead grows bigger and evermore far-reaching.
“We need to keep the pedal down,” says Rufo. “I believe making the effort to educate the consumer must continue and mature.”
Furthermore, CRT sponsors need to know that re-telling history will be trouble – both in the immediate term and in the longer term. Those trying to tell a new past for the country are sure to get it wrong – being chronically skinny on facts at the very least.
Still, we can’t wait for them to find that out. Sure – we know in time that CRT will probably fail. But, informing the public will be hard and action is needed now. If enlightening the skeptics is, indeed, the underlying strategy, here’s some useful advice: target and enlist parents.
For example, the Louden County School Board in northern Virginia is on the defense after trying to introduce a CRT-like curriculum to students. Led by regular guys turned activist Brandon Michon, parents from the Washington, DC enclave are threatening six Board members with recall – not a bad idea.
The Parents Defending Education (https://defendinged.org/) organization is busy equipping its members with the fundamentals of educating the public including basic communication skills and the details of winning and using timely Freedom of Information (FOI) requests.
And, activated parents can get behind the efforts of Benjamin Watson, a former NFL star. With his wife, Watson established the One More foundation. Among other things, One More, while battling curricula like CRT, helps parents rise up to play a greater role in their kids’ education.
If there was ever a time to be involved – in any way you can – it’s now.