Critical race theory, also known as the GOP's new lightning rod, is a concept that has been called critical race theory. What is critical race theory?
It appeared to pop up in political rallies and statehouses seemingly out of nowhere. It has become a rallying cry for political action on the right, from an obscure academic point of discussion on the left over the last few months.
For example, Wednesday's hearing by Congress into the military's approach in addressing racism, extremism and other issues was marred by critical race theory. On Wednesday, Gen. Mark Milley (chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff) vigorously rebutted Republican lawmakers' claims that the effort is causing division and lowering morale.
Even those who oppose or try to ban critical racism in schools struggle to define it. It is difficult to find examples in the real world of students being taught its principles.
What is the CRITICAL RACE THEORY?
Critical race theory refers to a method of looking at America's past through the lense of racism. It was developed by scholars in the 1970s and 1980s to address the lack of progress regarding race after the civil rights legislation of 1960s.
It focuses on the notion that racism is a systemic problem in our nation's institutions, and that these institutions function to perpetuate the dominance by white people in society.
The theory's architects argue that the United States was built on the theft and labor of land and labor, and that federal law has maintained an unequal treatment of individuals based on race. The theory's proponents believe that race is culturally created and not biological.
Kimberle Crenshaw was an early advocate of the African American Policy Forum. It is a social justice think-tank based in New York City. She says it was initially about "telling a better story about who we are."
IS CRITICAL RACE THEORY TAUGHT IN SCHOOLS
Although there is not much evidence that critical racism theory is being taught in K-12 public schools, some of its central ideas, like the lingering effects of slavery, are. Some middle school students in Greenwich, Connecticut were subject to a survey on "white bias" that their parents considered part of the theory.
Republicans in North Carolina point out the Wake County Public Schools System as an example. They claim that teachers took part in a professional learning session on critical race theory. Officials from the county education department cancelled a future session on critical race theory after it was discovered, but they insist that the theory is not part their classroom curriculum.
Lisa Luten spokeswoman for the school district. She stated that "Critical Race Theory is not something we teach students." "It's more a theory in academia over race that adults use for discussing the context of their environments."
WHY IS REPUBLICANS UPSET
Many Republicans see the critical race theory concepts as an attempt to rewrite American history. They want white people to believe that they are intrinsically racist and should feel guilty for their advantages.
However, the theory has also become a common term to describe some racial concepts that conservatives find objectionable such as white privilege and systemic inequalities.
WHERE DIDN'T REPUBLICAN POUSHBACK STARTE?
Republicans frequently cite the 1619 Project. In 2019, the New York Times published a new initiative that sought to tell the full story of America's history. It placed slavery at the heart of America's founding.
When then-President Trump made a scathing attack on it and the 1619 Project in a White House event that focused on America's history, critical race theory was reintroduced to the mainstream. Both were called "a crusade to American history" as well as "ideological poison, which... will destroy the country."
HOW DO STATES DISCUSS IT?
According to an analysis by Education Week, 25 states have so far considered legislation or other steps that would limit the teaching of race and racism. Eight Republican-led states have either banned or restricted the teaching of critical race theory and similar concepts via laws or administrative actions. These bans mostly address what can be taught in the classroom. Some bills mention critical race theory, while others don't.
Texas Governor Greg Abbott signed a bill last week that prohibits public school teachers from making any of the 10 concepts part of their curriculum. Greg Abbott signed a bill that prohibits public school teachers making any of the 10 concepts part their curriculum. This includes the notion that slavery's introduction in the United States is the true founding of the country.
Florida Governor. Ron DeSantis requested that the state's education board approve a resolution last Wednesday that stated that teaching critical-race theory and using instructional materials related to 1619 Project are in violation of state standards. U.S. Senator Rick Scott, R. Florida, and two other GOP senators presented a resolution last month which "condemns teachers being required to receive Critical Race Theory education."
What is the GOP's Response to These Actions?
Teachers' unions, educators, and social studies organizations fear that the limits will whitewash American History by downplaying past injustices. They fear that this will chill classroom discussions.
Critical race theory experts see the GOP-led measures being hijacked by the national conversation on racial inequality, which gained momentum following the murder of George Floyd in Minnesota by a white officer.
Some claim that the Republican way of describing it is not what they are used to. Cheryl Harris, a UCLA professor of law, says it is a myth that critical racism theory indoctrinates hatred against white people. It is meant to perpetuate divisions within American society. She stated that the proposals are designed to achieve a clear political goal: "To ensure that Republicans win in 2022."