Critical race theory (CRT) has been pushed in schools and workplaces across the country in a purported effort to instruct people about inequality and injustice. The opponents of CRT come from all backgrounds — they’re parents and community members who share a concern over the ideas being taught to their children.
CRT holds that America is fundamentally racist, yet teaches individuals to view every social interaction and person in terms of race. Its adherents pursue “antiracism” through the end of merit, objective truth and the adoption of race-based policies.
Schools across the country have implemented the ideas of CRT, often under “equity” policies or similar initiatives. In December, a report showed that Seattle Public Schools allegedly held a training teaching white teachers to “bankrupt their privilege” and understand the “centrality of whiteness” in society. In Philadelphia, students were reportedly told to participate in activities celebrating “black communist” Angela Davis in a Black Power rally simulation.
Kory Yeshua went viral for a video, filmed alongside his young daughter, calling for the end of CRT instruction because it divides people instead of empowering them, regardless of race.
— Laura Ingraham (@IngrahamAngle) June 2, 2021
He explained to the Daily Caller what he believes the message of CRT is.
“I believe it sends the message that no matter what you do, where you go, you won’t be able to overcome racism, so why even try? Why even try to become anything in life? Why even chase your dreams, when you’re going to be held back anyways, you’re going to have your oppressors oppressing you?”
Charles Love, who is the author of three books about race and culture and has a young son enrolled in a New York school, told the Caller that he predicted three years earlier in his book “We Want Equality: How The Fight For Equality Gave Way To Preference” what is happening today.
“I was saying, at some point, people are going to stop saying we want to be treated fairly and going to say they want preference, they’re going to say there needs to be a specific set of rules for certain groups, and here we are,” he said.
He explained that the intentions of racists from the 1950s and those who want to impose measures to purportedly fix racial disparity, for example, may be different. But the action, he says, is the same. He also was concerned the impact CRT could have on his son, who is the only black child in his classroom.
“What they’re saying is, we’re going to have separate water fountains and separate graduations. That guy who is the racist is doing it because he thinks he’s better. I’m doing it because I think there’s systemic racism and I want to make things better. But the problem is, are we focused on just the intent?”
In May, Wellesley Public Schools in Massachusetts reportedly segregated students by race during a “Healing Space for Asian and Asian American students” and Black, Indigenious, People of Color (BIPOC).
The “safe space” was only for students of color, and emphasizes that it is not “for students who identify only as White.” The school later said in a statement that the event was not intended to “prohibit anyone else from attending.” (RELATED: Public School District Allegedly Segregating Students By Race Faces Civil Rights Complaint From Parents Group)
Harry Jackson, a retired naval officer, is the first black president-elect of Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology, located in Fairfax County, Virginia. He told the Caller that he was perturbed by the influence CRT could have for children of all races and ethnicities, and noted how an admission reform policy at the school had appeared to target “with surgical precision” the Asian community.
“Considering the Asian community, which is diverse in itself coming from several countries with unique languages and cultures, calling them adjacent white. It’s very divisive within our community,” he told the Caller.
“It’s even harmful for the psyche of a minority such as myself, whether promoting CRT and antiracism by teaching children they are victims and a victimhood mentality,” he later added.
Admissions policies at multiple elite schools across the country have been reformed, often from merit-based admissions to a lottery system in a purported effort to address racism. Lowell High School in San Francisco, where half of the nearly 3,000 students are Asian, is among the schools to have done so.
Asian-Americans and other minorities have organized against the efforts in California to implement CRT instruction in schools and against measures like Proposition 16, which would have reinstated affirmative action by reversing a 1996 law prohibiting discrimination or preferential treatment by public colleges and employers. The measure failed.
On Thursday, the Chinese American Citizens Alliance Greater New York (CACAGNY) joined 26 other organizations to urge lawmakers to vote down AB 101, a bill that would require high school students to take an “ethnic studies” course to graduate. However, CACAGNY warned that on the surface supporters of the bill were denying connection with CRT, they were actually repackaging it with another name to make the class more palatable.
“We are not fooled by such deceptive marketing,” a statement by the group, provided to the Caller, said. “By any other name, it’s still CRT’s agenda of racist divisiveness, racist struggle, and absolutism, in schools, workplaces, politics, and media.”
Wai Wah Chin, the charter president of CACAGNY, told the Caller that CRT especially harms Asian American students by judging individuals by race instead of merit.
“Since CRT demands equal outcomes, as opposed to equal rights, in education, that means admitting students by race rather than by performance. That means that higher-performing Asians must be rejected, not because they suddenly became lazier or dumber, but just because of race,” Chin said.
Chin explained how Chinese-American parents have been disturbed to learn about what CRT instruction entails because of its similarities to what they or their relatives experienced during the Cultural Revolution. Launched by Chinese Communist Party leader Mao Zedong in 1966, the violent movement urged the Chinese to rid themselves of old customs and ideas, and resulted in approximately 1.5 million dead, according to History.
— The Epoch Times (@EpochTimes) June 6, 2021
“Asians, particularly the immigrants, are making the connection between the critical race struggle and communist class struggle that uprooted hundreds of millions of lives, destroying many of them,” Chin said.
Dr. Wenyuan Wu, the executive director of Californians for Equal Rights Foundation, fought Proposition 16, won, and decided afterward to keep fighting the issue of CRT. She also was involved when a Cupertino Union School District school in California instructed third-grade students to deconstruct their racial and sexual identities during a math class.
Breaking: Voters reject Proposition 16, keeping California’s ban on affirmative action policies. https://t.co/JM8ilko7o3
— Los Angeles Times (@latimes) November 4, 2020
“We aren’t taking on CRT as an academic discipline,” Wu told the Caller. “I think that this theory should be judged by its real-life implications rather than its academic details.”
Many Asian-Americans grew aware of CRT after joining the fight against Proposition 16.
Liang-Fang Chao initially got involved in a campaign against Proposition 16 before learning about the “ethnic studies” curriculum in California. “At the time I didn’t know what CRT was, I just thought that sounds very similar to the things they teach people in the Culture Revolution in China, but instead of class, they are using race to separate people in oppressor and victims, and that’s really divisive.”
Californians for Equal Rights Foundation also filed a civil rights complaint against San Diego Unified School District over mandatory teacher training based on CRT, Wu said.
“Fundamentally I’m concerned about CRT because it promotes essentially race-based perspective or worldview among the most impressionable population in our society, young students.”
“My child is biracial. I don’t want her to step into her early years of education and be taught or spoon-fed a lot of theories taught as accepted universal truth, such as our country is an irredeemably racist nation in our history and at present, and that we have institutions embedded and plagued by systemic racism,” Wu continued.
Marie Fischer, whose children are also biracial, told the Caller she was also concerned about CRT’s notion of collective guilt. “So basically you’re going to tell them, there’s a large number of children who are classified as black, are you going to tell them that their mother, their father, their grandparent, everybody who is white in the family is not a good person?”
Yi Tang, a California resident, mother of three and member of the Californians for Equal Rights Foundation, said that she is very worried for the long-term impact of CRT instruction, and described her parents’ harrowing experience through the Cultural Revolution.
“They destroyed the tradition, so many principles that people hold dear. What is mostly important is they destroyed the relationship and trust among people, between people,” Tang told the Caller about the revolution.
She lamented the destruction of American principles like equality before the law and merit-based achievement, which she said are what inspire immigrants like her to become citizens.
“I think Americans are going to be so divided and they’re going to be ruined. I can see the damage going past just the next generation but several generations to come.”