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The headlines call it “parents erupting” at school-board meetings. But what we’re seeing is an inspiring surge in parents across the country sticking up for kids, and their education, in unprecedented ways.
These parents are fighting the critical race theory being implemented in schools. The left argues parents don’t actually know what CRT is, that an unwashed rabble is blindly opposing something it doesn’t understand.
Liberal talking heads and politicians are trying to pretend these parents want to stop schools from teaching about slavery or Jim Crow. That’s simply untrue. Every viral speech of a parent speaking out against CRT shows how clearly they understand what CRT is and why it’s a threat to their children.
Some of the most powerful speeches have come from black parents, such as Keisha King in Duval County, Fla., who argued, “Telling my child or any child that they are in a permanent oppressed status in America because they are black is racist.”
Illinois father Ty Smith went viral for saying, “How do I have two medical degrees if I’m sitting here oppressed? . . . How’d I get where I am right now if some white man kept me down?”
It’s true that CRT isn’t a curriculum, it’s a framework. Christopher Rufo, the nation’s preeminent critic of CRT, defines it as “an academic discipline that holds that the United States is a nation founded on white supremacy and oppression, and that these forces are still at the root of our society.”
In this framework, all the academic subjects are taught through the lens of race.
Math, for example, long considered a strictly egalitarian subject, is now racist. That isn’t a bad joke — it’s America’s grim reality. The Oregon Department of Education sent a toolkit to middle-school teachers in February alleging that the focus on getting the right answer, and making students show their work, was “white-supremacy culture.” California took things a step further in May, introducing a draft framework for teaching math that prioritizes “equity” over, you know, quantitative reasoning.
Then parents in California rose up, forcing the state to drop the equity language in the draft framework.
Parents also fought back in Southlake, Texas, with anti-CRT candidates winning the mayoralty and sweeping the city council and school board. CNN framed them as opposing efforts “to incorporate cultural awareness into the curriculum.” Parents are seeing through this mendacious jargon. Thanks, but no, thanks, on that “cultural awareness,” CNN.
Loudoun County, Va., has been in the national spotlight because of its explosive school-board meetings. Parents there are trying to recall six members of the board who support CRT.
Cherokee County, Ga., banned CRT after a particularly contentious board meeting. So did Cobb County, Ga. (with the Democratic members of the board notably abstaining from the vote). The Gallatin County School District board of education, in Kentucky, voted unanimously to ban CRT. The uprising is spreading.
Why is this happening now? It could be because parents had a front-seat view into what their kids were learning during the pandemic. And why are they responding so ferociously? Adults may stay quiet as they are told they are inherently racist or oppressed based on the color of their skin. But they won’t allow the same fiction to be sold to their 4-year-olds.
CRT advocates and their media defenders are gaslighting parents when they claim parents don’t “get” this curriculum. That’s insulting. Parents are talking to their children, and they aren’t liking what they are hearing. They know what is being taught and, most important, how it’s being absorbed by their children. It’s professors in liberal ivory towers and their media epigones who don’t “get” this.
We get it. And we care about our children more than ourselves. These school-board battles prove it.
Governments are catching up. At Gov. Ron DeSantis’ urging, Florida’s Department of Education has banned CRT in schools. The Georgia State Board of Education also passed a resolution prohibiting CRT in schools. Twenty other states are considering such bans. In Idaho, Gov. Brad Little has signed such a law, as has Iowa’s Gov. Kim Reynolds.
But to really defeat this insidious framework, parents will have to keep paying attention to what their kids are learning in school and continue to speak up and fight the good fight. America’s kids deserve nothing less than our vigilance.
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