CRT: An Existential Threat to Children & Society

(Amy Groves) – As I start this conversation with you, I can’t help but wonder why the same people that advocate for “Critical Race Theory” (CRT) are also, many times, the same individuals that advocate for the removal of historic statues under the misguided notion that  statues contribute to racism and are oppressive.

If it is so vitally important that our children learn the history of racism in the United States, why are we picking and choosing their exposure? An argument can be made that I am not comparing apples to apples, however, I would argue that in CRT the “opinion prism” absolutely impacts the light’s trajectory.

“Those who fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it.” – Sir Winston Churchill

I believe our children should learn not only of the struggles of black people but should also learn about the atrocities that happened to Native Americans, Irish, Italians, Chinese, Japanese, Jews,  and wait for it – women.

While learning about the dark underbelly of the United States history they can also learn of the strides that have been made to eradicating racism and prejudice. Is there still work to be done? Of course! But the objective is to keep moving forward.

Students should also learn how far we have come in eradicating racism and prejudice.

The Civil War itself resulted in hundreds of thousands of Union causalities all for the sake of the elimination of slavery. Defining oneself as a victim is the primary undisputable mainstay the CRT “social philosophy” promotes. It villainizes generations of descendants and continues to victimize the descendants that were oppressed.

So, what about all the years since the abolishment of slavery? Are there any significant or contributing factors that should also be considered when evaluating the totality of the black experience in the United States? Hum, let’s see.

There are major urban cities that are blighted, beleaguered, and crime ridden that have been controlled primarily by one political party resulting it the “same old, same old,“ for years and years.  If you look at some of our major cities, such as Baltimore, Atlanta, St. Louis, and Chicago, there are, in total, over 370 years of the “same old, same old”  leadership failing  to address and improve substandard socioeconomic conditions.

Instead of focusing on assigning blame and labeling generations of people as victims perhaps  we should be teaching integrity, sound decision making, and leadership. Something to give our students the skill set, a road map, and the passion to make a difference and move the needle forward.  Just a thought.

We should also be teaching students that the greatest predictor of poverty is unwed teenage motherhood, regardless of race.

Black families are led by a single parent at 2.3 times their population percentage.  Of those single parents, father-led single parents are 60% below the national average.  These factors cannot be discounted. These factors  may contribute more to the state of the country, the state of education, and  perceived disparity in opportunities than “legacy oppression.”

We should also be teaching our children that racism was and is based in fear, and the ensuing struggle to be “top dog” is primal.  Fear is based on lack of knowledge. Every human being, hell, every creature fears what they do not know and do not understand. Primal. Survival. It’s in the DNA.

Instead of making our children’s’ world a microcosm of ancient history, giving permission to wallow in all the fear, pain, and victimization associated with it, let’s also teach them about many different cultures, beliefs, and traditions. With that knowledge comes understanding, acceptance, and, just like a nightlight in a child’s bedroom, illumination scares off the feared monsters hiding under the bed.

I have a friend who has been fortunate enough to live in several different regions of the country. She lived 4 years in a Northern state and 4 years in the deep South. She said these two experiences rocked her perception of racism in America and were the monument stones in her belief system.

When she moved to the South she anticipated that racism and condescension to, and condemnation of, black citizens would be prevalent.  She did experience a couple of people who were 80+ years old and oozed every stereotypical thing she anticipated. The “N” word was just as likely to come out of their mouth as wishing someone a good morning.

To her surprise, and relief, they were the exception.

During her time in the South, she learned as she interacted with younger people the “inherent” racism we all associate with the South was not present, and if there was negativity, that generation would NEVER express it or be hurtful.  Many times, she was told, ”We just weren’t raised that way. We’d get our butts beat if we were unkind or disrespectful of anyone.”

Generational learning, experience, and a cultural expectation of appropriate behavior appears to be changing the race relations  dynamic. Perhaps we should teach that?

Her experience in the North was mind-blowing. In the city she where she lived, someone handed out a memo that stated it was not only acceptable but required to be vile, aggressive, hostile, and demeaning to all – no race, creed, religion, or gender was excluded. Hate was the four-letter word of the day; every day.

Okay, so there was no memo, but that is how pervasive it was – and how routinely it was accepted, no expected. Should this be taught? Well, duh, of course not. CRT does promote division, hostility, oppression, and victimization. Maybe what CRT propagates is not that far removed from what we just agreed was unacceptable in our schools?

At the end of the day, like it or not, children live what they learn.

I could be 5’7, 115 pounds, with all the money in the world, 10 houses, 6 cars, and a pool-boy…but when I see myself, I still see a pudgy little girl who went to bed hungry on more than one occasion.

The next generations are no different.  Who we become and how we live our life is determined by what we learned.  How else do we know how to behave? There is no handbook or set of instructions. I, for one, want no more  generations of people who feel victimized and marginalized. I want people with the desire, critical thinking skill set, and wherewithal to improve themselves and our society.

We are at a crossroad. We have the responsibility to remove this “theory” from our schools. It is damaging our children and their world view.  It’s the right thing to do for our kids. It’s the only thing.

Children Learn What They Live

If children live with criticism, they learn to condemn.

If children live with hostility, they learn to fight.

If children live with ridicule, they learn to be shy.

If children live with shame, they learn to feel guilty.

If children live with encouragement, they learn confidence.

If children live with tolerance, they learn to be patient.

If children live with praise, they learn to appreciate.

If children live with acceptance, they learn to love.

If children live with approval, they learn to like themselves.

If children live with honesty, they learn truthfulness.

If children live with security, they learn to have faith in themselves and others.

If children live with friendliness, they learn the world is a nice place in which to live.

Dorothy Law, 1955

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