Critical Race Theory is a reasonable curriculum according to a new business item from the representative assembly of the National Education Association. Some are taking this to mean teaching real academic CRT in like kindergarten or 6th grade. This is not an unreasonable mistake, but it is likely based on a fundamental misunderstanding. The NEA also represents college professors in addition to K-12 teachers. Furthermore, the things that people are worried about, “teaching White kids to hate themselves”. That is not what anyone is saying should be done at all.
The full text of NEA RA new business item 39 can be found here. Notice that it does not say this is for k-12 education it also covers all of the things that bad faith actors have said are synonymous for Critical Race Theory. This includes such clearly Marxist things as “Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI)”, “Representation and inclusion”, “Marginalized/Minoritized/Under-represented communities”, or even “Multiculturalism”.
The NBI says among other things.
Provide an already-created, in-depth, study that critiques empire, white supremacy, anti-Blackness, anti-Indigeneity, racism, patriarchy, cisheteropatriarchy, capitalism, ableism, anthropocentrism, and other forms of power and oppression at the intersections of our society, and that we oppose attempts to ban critical race theory and/or the 1619 Project.
Not every issue in the Black community today is rooted in slavery. Quite a few are rooted in the era of Jim Crow which only ended about 55 years ago. Every Black person you know over 55 was born into an inferior level of citizen ship. This is also a fact that that effects people and the children they would raise.
That said the correct response to those injustices would be not to buy into the narrative we are inferior or to hate White people. The correct response is to learn from it, teach about it, and be the strongest crusaders for human rights for everyone in the world.
The best way to do this is not via performative communist struggle sessions called “diversity training” but by hiring qualified Black and Brown people and treating them exactly like anyone else.
The Historical Roots of the 1619 Project.
Let us focus on the infamous 1619 project. First, it is rooted in this historical fact that in 1619 the first Africans were brought to the shores of what would become British America. It gets some things wrong. They were not slaves, but they were also not free. They were treated as indentured servants. Some gained freedom and had indentured servants of their own white and Black. Between 1619 and 1650 the owning of White indentured servants by Black colonist was outlawed, slavery became a hereditary situation one inherited from their mother, and interracial marriage was outlawed.
Tobacco Slaves in Virginia in about 1670. I feel very strongly about this since just about everyone of every color in this picture could’ve been my ancestor. For me this isn’t an abstraction this is literally the history of my family.
Between 1650 and 1750 it became even more racialized and most colonies abolished it. 1776 was a detrimental missed opportunity. Then by the Dredd Scott V Sanford decision Black people were stripped of all human rights. Including free Black people. This lead in part to the civil war and final emancipation. Which again was a missed opportunity.
Emancipation was followed by 100 years of Jim crow. 187 of 245 years or 76% of US history had Black people as legally inferior. These are all facts and people in grades 8-12 can certainly take hearing this. Teaching that such ugly things happened in the past is not teaching anyone to hate anyone. To not teach about these things would be to do the same thing as the Chinese Communist Party who suppresses the story of Tiananmen square for the sake of “harmony”. When it comes to transgender people many on the right love to say, “facts don’t care about your feelings”. Well how about these facts?
A Longish Response to Jack Posobiec. A case study in the absurdity of a new talking point.
The idea that stating the fact that CRT is not taught in elementary schools is a tactic of defending something defensible instead of the real thing. When really it is just a matter of paranoia, similar to what leads to the sprawling listt of "CRT" terms from the Center for Renewing America , that leads them to think how they think.
It is not a Motte and Bailey tactic. It is people on the right who have defined CRT so broadly that any teaching that the US was anything but paradise for Black Americans is CRT now. Those who defend it are defending what it really is not the straw men constructed out of right wing fears. Furthermore, there are things the right is calling CRT which really should be taught in grades 8-12.
For example on the Center For Renewing America’s list “Cultural competence” is listed as being a weasel word for CRT. So teaching kids the difference between say Mexican and Puerto Rican cultures … so they don’t do silly things like celebrate Puerto Rican day with tex-mex style tacos would be CRT now.
Knowing the difference between various Asian cultures. So your kids will be less like Hank Hill.
Then be more like his old school father Cotton Hill.
How about this one from their list , Examine “systems”. So if your kid is going to examine “systems” in school then that is CRT. So much for so much STEM where we do exactly that. Notice the Center For Renewing America does not specify what kind of systems but from looking at their list I’d wager that they believe the world is flat so studying the solar system is a left wing Marxist conspiracy! Which is sad since as a card carrying member of the Libertarian party I likely agree with them on certain issues even as I’d oppose them on others. Just as I’d agree with Posobeic on certain issues as I’d oppose him on others.
Hank and his friends are what the kind of “patriotic” education the anti “CRT” crowd wants would result in. People who are completely ignorant of their own history much less the rest of the world.
One last thing dude what’s with the clapping emoji’s? Supposedly people on the left do that but the only ones I see doing that are on the right. I had to remove them so that they wouldn't cause an issue with this website.
Clearly there is a lot of wrong think on the part of the anti "CRT" crowd. Who will claim they don't oppose teaching that racialized Black slavery occured ... then move to ban all of the words that are needed to talk about it. Then talk about freedom while trying to ban words! They are proven wrong by reductio ad absurdum.
For a nuanced view of this that is not mine check out this article by Reason.com. In which it is pointed out that "CRT" would have to mean the NEA accepting the conservative framing of the issue. Where they go wrong is that the NEA New Business Item tries to distinguish between what CRT is and what people think it is and that some of the things people think it is should never the less be taught. Which of course they should be. What kind of person does not want an education that not only teaches the basics but also teaches the basics of human cultures. One of the greatest strengths of the US is multicultralism and diversity. We can be the glue that holds the world together.
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