Thousands of public schools in the United States could lose funding if they teach their students the history of racism in that country, according to Dalia Gonzalez Delgado in Cubadebate. The report solidly explains the structural nature of racism in that country, which I summarize and recommend reading in its entirety.
At least eight states — with majority Republican legislatures — have approved laws restricting the teaching of issues related to racial history and race relations. The target of the attacks, critical race theory, is an approach that has until recently been confined to academic circles, but has gained prominence in recent months.
Essentially, CRT argues that racism in the U.S. goes beyond personal prejudice because it is incorporated into laws and institutions. According to one of its founders, Kimberlé Crenshaw, a professor at the University of California, Los Angeles, School of Law, it is a perspective on the inherited world “after a legacy of segregation, slavery, manifest destiny, genocide. Basically, it links contemporary problems around racial inequality with laws and policies that produced those same inequalities in the past.”*
Donald Trump wrote on the website RealClearPolitics that “students are being subjected to a new curriculum designed to brainwash them,” and characterized critical race theory as “the left’s vile new theory,” “anti-American” and “immoral.” According to Trump, schools should help students learn that the U.S. is the “greatest, most tolerant, and most generous nation in history.”
Recently, Democrat Terry McAuliffe lost the Virginia governor’s race to Republican candidate Glenn Youngkin, who made a campaign promise to prohibit the teaching of critical race theory in Virginia schools. A CBS News poll reported that 62% of Virginia voters thought that “academic curricula involving race and history” was an “important factor” in their vote.*
*Editor’s Note: These quotes, though accurately translated, could not be verified.