States Push Back Against Critical Race Theory

In the state of Idaho, located in the United States, lawmakers have banned the teaching of critical race theory in class. Here is what one person had to say about critical race theory in Idaho education

We need to protect our teachers from being forced to teach this social justice garbage, including critical race theory.

The penalty for violating this law is the withholding of state funding. According to the NPR report,

So last month, lawmakers wrote a bill to withhold state funding from schools if teachers compel students to believe certain viewpoints, which lawmakers say are, quote, “often found in critical race theory.”

Conservatives primarily support this law, and Democrats had some criticism of this law. At least one lawmaker did not see the teaching of critical race theory as a problem as they were a former educator and administrator.

In my 32 years in two different school districts, a public charter school, I never saw any of this happening, and I still don’t see that happening.

Critical race theory has been in the news lately as the beliefs of this philosophy stress that race is the primary motivating factor in the world and has led to the systemic oppression of various races that done have power. As people have come to embrace this worldview, there appears to be a heightened push for social justice ideas by regular Americans and increased coverage of oppression and inequality by the media.

The history of critical race theory harkens back to Marxism and the struggle of the rich and poor. Marx’s ideas of a class struggle were mutated to develop critical race theory, which does not see a financial struggle but instead focuses more on a racial struggle. In other words, critical race theory is the expansion of Marxist ideas beyond economic and material concepts to other areas of culture such as race.

Many of the various movements of today are rooted in Marxist thought as they often pit one group that lacks “power” against another that has the power either through means or numerical advantage. Examples include feminism, postcolonialism (colonizers vs. colonized), and fat studies (overweight vs. not overweight).

Recently, there is a movement in Texas to ban critical race theory in schools there. The bill is currently in committee and has a strong chance of passing. The complaint against critical race theory in Texas is its divisive nature and the depiction of White Americans as implicitly racist and complicit in a system of oppression against minorities.

This struggle over critical race theory has also taken place at the federal level. Donald Trump removed critical race theory training among federal workers with an executive order as president. However, this executive order was overturned by an executive order by Joe Biden when he assumed the presidency.

The outcome of this battle is yet to be determined. People are still deciding if the values of critical theory are in agreement with theirs.

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