by Christopher Paslay
There’s nothing unifying about Critical Race Theory, Mr. President.
“I’m rescinding the previous administration’s harmful ban on diversity and sensitivity training and abolishing the offensive, counterfactual 1776 commission,” President Biden stated at a recent press conference. “Unity and healing must begin with understanding and truth, not ignorance and lies.”
It’s painful to watch Joe Biden squint at the teleprompter and stumble though a bunch of lines he seems to know nothing about. It’s unclear whether Joe has been duped by his handlers and staffers — those who tell him what to say and what sign — or whether Joe actually believes what he’s saying. The fact is, President Biden’s words to the American people about lifting a supposed ban on “diversity and sensitivity training” are so off-base it almost seems as though he comes from another planet. Either that, or he’s simply gaslighting the country with flat out propaganda.
Those familiar with Critical Race Theory — and its offshoot, anti-racism — know that it has little to do with “diversity and sensitivity,” and even less to do with unity. In fact, Critical Race Theory and anti-racism emerged because things like diversity and sensitivity training — and Martin Luther King’s Civil Rights Movement based in classic liberalism — were moving too slowly for militant activists who wanted a more aggressive and provocative approach to so-called racial equality.
Believers in Critical Race Theory and anti-racism don’t want unity, and freely admit as much. The notion of unity, along with trying to identify universal qualities that bring us together, is a big no-no for anti-racist educators pushing Critical Race Theory. People like Robin DiAngelo, author of White Fragility, and Ibram X. Kendi, author of How to Be an Anti-Racist, insist universal human values don’t exist, literally. Whites are so privileged and steeped in systemic racism, and people of color are so oppressed and victimized, that these two groups can only experience the world relative to their own cultures, and a universal or unifying system of values and communication is impossible; to anti-racists, everything is relative to culture, and processed through the lens of race.
Which is why anti-racists preach that whites could never understand the oppressive lives of people of color, and any attempts to do so are met with accusations of racism or claims of white acculturalization — which is a fancy way of saying that whites who believe traditional values transcend race are pushing white supremacy culture on people of color.
Robin DiAngelo flat out states, “Niceness is not anti-racist.” In fact, suggesting people should be nice to each other is a form of violence, she believes, because being nice isn’t going to stop systemic racism or oppression; being nice simply perpetuates white supremacy. This is why KIPP charter school founder Richard Barth recently announced KIPP was retiring its national slogan, ‘Work hard. Be nice.’ According to Barth, the slogan “ignores the significant effort required to dismantle systemic racism, places value on being compliant and submissive, supports the illusion of meritocracy, and does not align with our vision of students being free to create the future they want.”
So much for the phony notion of unity, at least where Critical Race Theory and anti-racism are concerned. Anti-racism, stated another way, could be called “anti-unity.” Again, the unity model, based in “niceness” and understanding, does not attack so-called systemic racism and white supremacy culture head on, but serves to perpetuate it. What anti-racists who espouse Critical Race Theory want is agitation, provocation, and confrontation — and advocate for the kind of racial unrest we witnessed over the summer. In short, they want to shock white society out of its inherently racist, privileged bubble.
Critical Race Theory aims to target, disrupt, and dismantle “whiteness.” It stereotypes entire groups of people into polarizing identity groups — oppressive whites on one side, oppressed people of color on the other. Trainings based in Critical Race Theory, in public schools and government agencies, require participants to segregate themselves into affinity groups by race, deconstruct their racial identity, and admit their privilege and participation in a racist system.
Despite what President Biden says, none of this has anything to do with sensitivity training or unity. The ban on Critical Race Theory was an attempt to stop the polarization of people by race, the racialization of government agencies and schools, and from using skin color to judge entire groups of people. It was an attempt at universal communication and values, an attempt at unity.
In essence, President Biden is calling for unity by rescinding a ban aimed at bringing unity. He’s rescinding a ban on judging people by the color of their skin, and not the content of their character. He’s rescinding a ban that aimed to forward the Civil Rights legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. His out-of-touch Executive Orders are what’s counterfactual, as is his bizarre notion of “sensitivity training.”
Ironically, it was the 1776 Commission that aimed to counter the misinformation being purported in the New York Times “1619 Project,” misinformation called out by Princeton historian Sean Wilentz, who in November of 2019, began circulating a letter objecting to the project, and of author Nikole Hannah-Jones’s work in particular.
Soon James McPherson, Gordon Wood, Victoria Bynum, and James Oakes — all leading scholars in their field, signed the letter which stated the 1619 Project fabricated facts and that the project reflected “a displacement of historical understanding by ideology.”
The New York Times refused to correct the misinformation about Americas’ founding, and author Hannah-Jones won a Pulitzer Prize. But even Hannah-Jones admitted that the 1619 Project wasn’t necessarily about history, but about journalism. Loose translation: it was first a piece of social justice propaganda, which put activism over history, and politics over facts.
And yet President Biden inverts reality and flips facts on their head. The 1776 Commission was created to correcthistory, not distort it. The ban on Critical Race Theory was made to bring America together, not drive it part.
Unity and healing, Mr. President, indeed start with understanding and truth, not ignorance and lies. Perhaps, as the new leader of the free world, you’d like to get some perspective on both.