Manhattan Institute researchers Zach Goldberg and Eric Kaufman released a February 2023 study that surveyed more than 1500 Americans 18 to 20 years old. The results suggest that “Critical Race Theory (CRT) and radical gender ideology, together known as Critical Social Justice (CSJ), is widespread in American schools.”
According to the report’s co-author, Zach Goldberg, “Whatever you want to call it [CRT or CJS], something’s going on in our schools…” Goldberg said. “These are all very closely connected concepts that are features of critical race theory, the view that all disparities between groups are the results of social structures. That’s the idea.”
“… call it whatever you want to call it, but you’re teaching really contentious and empirically dubious ideas as if they were facts.”
The verdict is in: CRT is taught in our public schools.
Now it’s one thing to encourage teachers to present a more comprehensive and honest discussion about our country’s grim history of slavery, segregation and oppression. In fact, Americans largely embrace this notion.
There is overwhelming agreement that teaching about the vindictive laws of segregation and disenfranchisement known as “Jim Crow“, or the courage and inspiration of Rosa Parks, are essential to understanding our progress as a nation. Martin Luther King, Jr’s, Letter from a Birmingham Jail, should be required reading for its eloquence, humility and moral clarity.
Moreover, most Americans freely acknowledge that America, since its formation, has fallen short of its founding ideals of equality and individual liberty.
However, it’s quite another to promote, as an irrefutable fact, that the United States was founded by a white male power structure with the specific design and intent of suppressing black Americans and persons of color to maintain and perpetuate white dominance. Under this paradigm, whites are privileged oppressors. If you are black/POC, or female, you are the perpetual oppressed victim.
Once this premise is established the reasoning follows that if you are white, regardless of your individual circumstances or awareness, you are upholding and perpetuating an inherently racist society. You must also accept the guilt and shame of the racist sins of your past generations. If you are not white, you are forever a victim of a cultural arrangement designed to keep you subservient to the oppressors. There is no tolerance for further debate on this concept.
This ideology reduces people to stereotypical representatives of their racial affiliation. Challenge this notion and you only confirm accusers’ presumptions by exposing your ignorance. Or, as Black Panther activist-turned-conservative Republican Eldridge Cleaver put it, “If you are not a part of the solution, you are a part of the problem.”
CRT’s message to white students: You are unacceptable the way you are. Your self-image is flawed and must be re-constructed to one that acknowledges and accepts your white privilege, racist proclivities, and role in perpetuating a corrupt and discriminatory system. The school will dutifully train you to redefine yourself into a person that aligns with its collectivist ideology.
For everyone else, CRT casts you as a perpetual victim to white bigots in a fundamentally racist state. You must accept that, no matter how hard you try, the system is rigged against you. You will never be allowed to realize your full potential. Again, public educational institutions will help you to re-imagine yourself as a forever victim of white oppression.
This pedagogy is not evocative of a more comprehensive or expanded narrative of our nation’s struggles with slavery or an abstract social concept to be debated. This “has all the classic earmarks of” indoctrination – and retribution justified by America’s racist past and ongoing challenges. The logical progression of this notion is that our current system based on the Founder’s principles is a lie.
Even in today’s hyper-polarized environment, most rational folks readily concede finding common ground on an incendiary topic as CRT is as likely as the Biden administration admitting we have a crisis at our southern border. CRT adherents are unwavering in their view that the American system of government is thoroughly corrupt and therefore must be dismantled and replaced with a more “diverse, equitable and inclusive” regime.
CRT is not simply calling out a racist “system”, the inadequacies of the Civil Rights movement or forcing uncomfortable conversations about race. This is personal, and that’s what enrages parents. The emphasis in CRT is to define, categorize and morally judge young children by nothing more than their skin color or gender, setting them against each other. Can anything be more degrading?
I’ve always believed the purpose of education is to mentor students on HOW to think, not WHAT to think. Critical Race Theory is just that; a theory, not an empirical fact. There is no genetic predisposition to racism.
Children are not born racists. Racism must be taught.
Where do the proponents of CRT ideology want to take us? What is their end-game? A dehumanizing world where the inhabitants are distinguished only by skin color and individual identity ceases to exist? Where diversity of thought is punished, where equity equals mediocrity, and inclusiveness is achieved through obedient submission to a collective ideology?
Congress cannot legislate a set unifying ethical principles to a diverse populace. Neither can a president, by executive decree, enforce a singular moral code among all Americans. Human beings come in all shapes, sizes and colors. Each one exquisitely unique with talents, dreams and ambitions, freely contributing to societal progress through the development of diverse values, opinions and ideas.
Maybe I’m missing something, but I always believed that every human being is deserving of dignity and respect, flaws included. “You don’t have to teach people how to be human. You have to teach them how to stop being inhuman.” Maybe Eldridge Cleaver was onto something.
Mark D. Ferbrache served as an FBI special agent for 27 years specializing in white-collar criminal investigations. He later worked in the bureau’s National Security Division and CIA’s Counterterrorism Center, and held diplomatic assignments in Prague, London and Bucharest, as well as field office assignments in Seattle, New York and the FBI Headquarters in Washington. He is currently employed as a contractor in the U.S. intelligence community.
The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not reflect the official position of the Daily Caller.