Byline: Blair Krassen
Following months of discussion on the topic, a new law banning “critical race theory” in Texas public schools was officially passed on December 2.
According to CBS Austin, “Critical race theory is a broad academic movement, focusing on how racism throughout history — dating back to slavery — has shaped American law, education, and other aspects of society.”
While most wouldn’t even consider current teachings to fall under the feared term of “critical race theory” at all, under this new bill, subjects such as Native American History, the Civil Rights Movement and Brown vs. the Board of Education will be eliminated from Texas public schools social studies curriculum. Stories about American heroes such as Malcom X and Martin Luther King will even be removed.
Why? This is all based on the concern that teaching such topics makes White children feel “demonized” or “inherently evil.” Despite the GOP’s constant rhetoric about the left being too “sensitive,” they are opting to neglect teaching their children basic American history in order to protect their potentially hurt feelings.
As a White woman myself, I can honestly say that having grown up with a similar curriculum and diving in further throughout my college education, I have never once felt “demonized” or that I myself am “inherently evil” because of my race. Nor did I feel that this curriculum was designed to have such an effect. In fact, I am grateful for the opportunity to be presented with enough facts to broaden my knowledge and allow me to be less ignorant than my ancestors.
These are essential topics in American history. If you’re not going to tell the entire story, then why even tell it all? There is a reason that for the past several decades we’ve considered these lessons an important part of not just our state, but our country’s collective education.
While ignorance is bliss, knowledge is power, and that is why the GOP is trying to stop the children of Texas from learning. It is important that we keep on fighting this bill in order to bring back the power of knowledge to our schools and to our children.