By Eric Daugherty
Thursday, the Florida Board of Education approved Florida Republican
Governor Ron DeSantis’ rule to effectively ban critical race theory in Florida
The rule does not officially cite the phrase “critical race theory,” but bans the
instruction of certain concepts regarding race and historical events.
“Instructions on the required topics must be factual and objective and may not
suppress or distort significant historical events, such as the Holocaust, and
may not define American history as something other than the creation of a
new nation based on largely universal principles stated in the Declaration of
Independence,” DeSantis’ touted rule reads.
The governor’s press secretary Christina Pushaw argued at the meeting that
“race essentialism in any form is destructive, especially in a diverse society
where each person should be judged only by the content of their character.”
The new rule faces outcry largely from Democrats and those on the American
left, who believe in the importance of designating white people as
“oppressors” and various other artificially defined racial groups as the
“oppressed.” This is a central element to Critical Race Theory.
Critics of the Theory, typically Republicans and those on the American right,
point out that it runs contrary to the principles the United States of America
was founded upon in the late 1700s. The Declaration of Independence
stressed the importance of “all men are created equal.” Dividing people into
racial groups and attributing positive or negative traits to them, critics argue,
runs contrary to these principles and the American Civil Rights Movement.
Broadly assigning traits to racial groups was a tactic used by Democrats
through and after the American Civil War. The beliefs and practices of the
historical Ku Klux Klan is a well-known exemplification of the tactic in use.
DeSantis’ new policy is part of a greater effort of a strong movement in the
Republican Party of opposing Critical Race Theory in American institutions,
broadly championed by Democrats and progressives.
Republicans argue the importance of staying true to equality of Americans
regardless of immutable characteristics like race.
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