Teaching kids to hate America? Republicans want ‘critical race theory’ out of schools Alia Wong, USA TODAY 2 hrs ago
Idaho's governor last week signed into law a bill whose purpose, at face value, is noncontroversial. The law prohibits public schools and colleges from teaching that "any sex, race, ethnicity, religion, color, or national origin is inherently superior or inferior."
Critics warn these measures are part of a larger movement to draw America’s culture wars into classrooms. And this war centers on a once-obscure legal theory about how the legacy of slavery continues to permeate American society today.
“Critical race theory” goes beyond advocating for civil rights or banning discrimination. Proponents see it as a framework to examine how the taint of racism still affects Black Americans and other people of color in matters ranging from who gets bank loans and admission into elite universities to how suspects are treated by police.
Detractors dismiss critical race theory as a method for “teaching kids to hate their country” or to promote “public school wokeness.”
But while such talking points play well among conservative media circles, political and legal experts contend they obscure more meaningful discussion about the role systemic racism plays in the American experience.
The bills seeking to prohibit the instruction of “divisive concepts” seldom mention critical race theory directly, but in many cases legislators have cited it as a driving force behind the measures.
In an April Facebook post promoting a bill in Rhode Island that has since stalled in committee, state Rep. Patricia Morgan, a co-sponsor, wrote, "Critical Race Theory must be stopped." After quoting Martin Luther King Jr., she went on to say, "Our state must reject the neo-racism and race-shaming of Critical Race Theory. We have no time to waste in rooting out this disturbing, divisive and false ideology."
While discussing a new civics education initiative in Florida's public schools, Gov. Ron DeSantis said, "There’s no room in our classrooms for things like critical race theory. Teaching kids to hate their country and to hate each other is not worth one red cent of taxpayer money."