Why we need to combat Critical Race Theory
Across America, a radical ideology is taking hold. Critical Race Theory argues that the United States is founded on racial supremacy and oppression.
Instead of viewing each American as an individual, Critical Race Theory teaches people to regard one another as either an oppressor or one of the oppressed. A form of Marxism, Critical Race Theory categorizes society not by class, but by race. It is an inherently divisive ideology.
It is also extreme. Critical race theorists seek to overthrow the existing economic and political order that has helped make America one of the most successful nations in history.
Indeed, critical race theorists would take issue with the idea of America as a success story, preferring instead to see America as always in the wrong.
For a long time, these ideas were confined to a few academics on liberal college campuses. But the problem is that they have spread out from college campuses into the workplace, government and even the military.
Listening to speakers at the Neshoba County Fair this year, I was struck by how many spoke out against Critical Race Theory. “Something”, they all demanded, “must be done!”
But what? You cannot simply issue a decree to do away with an idea you do not like.
That is why the Mississippi Center for Public Policy has this week published a report with an action plan on the steps we need to take.
Our report considers the evidence and shows that – despite assurances to the contrary – this ideology is being promoted at schools and universities in our state at public expense.
Some of what our report reveals is shocking. For example, several departments at public universities explicitly espouse Critical Race Theory. One, for example, refers to the way that “systemic racism” perpetuates “white supremacy”. Another teaches courses that explore “how whiteness is constructed” and looks at the relationship between white identity and “white nationalism, white supremacy, white privilege and whiteness.”
I believe it is also a cause for concern that the Mississippi Department of Education recommends teachers use professional development resources provided by organizations that clearly promote Critical Race Theory, such as the Zinn Education Project, which has called for the abolition of Christopher Columbus Day.
Our report sets out a positive agenda to help combat these divisive ideas. We publish a bill to tackle critical race theory in the classroom and on campus. We have recommendations to review the curriculum and take steps to ensure that public universities teach students a range of ideas and differing viewpoints.
A new arrival to the United States, I believe that America is the greatest republic in human history. Why? Because the USA was founded on the principle that everyone possesses their own ‘inalienable rights.’ That principle, however imperfectly applied, helped to define the United States as a country that respected people as individuals.
Critical race theory stands that ideal on its head, insisting instead that we define ourselves according to immutable characteristics. This ideology is profoundly un-American and anti-American.
Douglas Carswell is the President & CEO of the Mississippi Center for Public Policy, our state’s leading free market advocacy organization.