Last month, a petition was started on the Zinn Education Project titled “Pledge to Teach the Truth: Despite New State Bills Against It.” It has achieved more than 5,000 public signatures.
The petition comes in a response to lawmakers in more than 21 states passing legislation banning the teaching of critical race theory or its principles. The authors argue “how can one teach honestly about the nature of our society without examining how today’s racial inequality is a systemic legacy of this country’s history?”
Florida is among the states to ban the teaching of critical race theory in public schools. Republicans typically champion this kind of legislation, arguing in favor of historical objectivism rather than insertion of left-wing political opinion.
The petition’s proponents believe critical race theory is the “truth.” Thus, they claim these laws effectively prohibit the teaching of “truth.”
“From police violence, to the prison system, to the wealth gap, to maternal mortality rates, to housing, to education and beyond, the major institutions and systems of our country are deeply infected with anti-Blackness and its intersection with other forms of oppression,” it continues.
Critics argue that systemic racism is already taught in current U.S. History classes. Blockbusting, redlining, slavery, Jim Crow laws, the Civil War, and the triangle slave trade are some of many instances where “systemic racism” is taught.
Curriculums follow the factual historical timeline into the Civil Rights Era where systemic racism is ended.
Parents are concerned that even if official curriculums do not contain critical race theory, teachers can circumvent local laws by inserting their left-wing political opinions in informal class discussion with impressionable children.
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