Critical Race Theory – a viewpoint – By Debra M Johnson
Critical Race Theory is seeping more and more into American institutions in the last decade but the slide has started much earlier in history. What is this trend and where did it come from? What are the goals and/or consequences and why is it so controversial?
Many people associate this trend with the far left and consequently feel it’s something in the cities and certainly not on a tight knit conservative community like Floyd. But with the new requirements on transgender policies soon to be adopted in Floyd, it’s becoming apparent this may be either a precursor or a distraction to the real threat creeping into even sleepy Floyd County which is Critical Race Theory.
What is Critical Race Theory?
This trend has origins in the Frankfurt School in Germany in the early 1900’s in the Western MARXIST tradition. It was called Critical Theory. The descriptions are as obtuse as the practice itself (my observation). “Freeing” oppressed people from “domination” by controlling narratives and dominating select groups depending on the target. In current practice this has focused on Race and “Gender”, hence Critical Race Theory. If you read articles on Critical Race Theory paying close attention to their “beliefs” and then wonder how they reach the conclusions they have you are not alone!
The connections of Critical Theory to Marxism is undeniable. Historical Marxism has been spread through many countries(all failures) by creating broad class divisions such as creating a revolution of the working class against the “capitalists”. The government takes over the means of production and provides “equity” of the resources to the working class. The result is that the producers have no incentive so mass shortages, starvation, violence and chaos ensues and systems collapse. Many people die.
But Marxism was a revolution of the working class – this is different right??? Wrong!
Chris Rufo writes in Critical Race Theory: What It Is and How to Fight It – Imprimis (hillsdale.edu) that the typical revolution of the working class is difficult to achieve in America. The principals of the American Dream are very strong. Consequently the divisions currently being observed are along the lines of Race, Ethnicity and Sexual Orientation. The target is no longer the capitalist but the straight white Christian male. The movement leverages deliberately ambiguous terminology, guilt, oppression and victimization. Facts are distorted or largely absent.
The movement started in the Academic arena and has spread through government, corporate human resources, and secondary education.
What do the proponents of Critical Race Theory believe?
James Linsday in Eight Big Reasons Critical Race Theory Is Terrible for Dealing with Racism – New Discourses lists the following about Critical Race Theory beliefs:
- believes racism is present in every aspect of life, every relationship, and every interaction and therefore has its advocates look for it everywhere
- relies upon “interest convergence” (white people only give black people opportunities and freedoms when it is also in their own interests) and therefore doesn’t trust any attempt to make racism better
- is against free societies and wants to dismantle them and replace them with something its advocates control
- only treats race issues as “socially constructed groups,” so there are no individuals in Critical Race Theory
- believes science, reason, and evidence are a “white” way of knowing and that storytelling and lived experience are a “black” alternative, which hurts everyone, especially black people
- rejects all potential alternatives, like colorblindness, as forms of racism, making itself the only allowable game in town (which is totalitarian)
- acts like anyone who disagrees with it must do so for racist and white supremacist reasons, even if those people are black (which is also totalitarian)
- cannot be satisfied, so it becomes a kind of activist black hole that threatens to destroy everything it is introduced into
How did America get here and what can be done?
Christopher Rufo has four thoughts:
First Conservatives are afraid to speak up! The torrent of abuse that people who dissent get on social media, work environment, even personal threats are too intimidating for most. This group is in the minority but they have the majority of sensible people intimidated.
Second, critical race theorists have constructed their argument like a mousetrap. Disagreement meets with terms like “white fragility,” “unconscious bias,” or “internalized white supremacy.” Outrageous claims—such as “all whites are intrinsically oppressors” or “white teachers are guilty of spirit murdering black children” are made. When one disagrees, they adopt a patronizing tone and explain that participants who feel “defensiveness” or “anger” are reacting out of guilt and shame. Dissenters are instructed to remain silent, “lean into the discomfort,” and accept their “complicity in white supremacy.”
Third, Americans across the political spectrum have failed to separate the premise of critical race theory from its conclusion. Its premise—that American history includes slavery and other injustices, and that we should examine and learn from that history—is undeniable. But its revolutionary conclusion—that America was founded on and defined by racism and that our founding principles, our Constitution, and our way of life should be overthrown—does not rightly, much less necessarily, follow.
Fourth and finally, the writers and activists who have had the courage to speak out against critical race theory have tended to address it on the theoretical level, pointing out the theory’s logical contradictions and dishonest account of history. These criticisms are worthy and good, but they move the debate into the academic realm, which is friendly terrain for proponents of critical race theory. They fail to force defenders of this revolutionary ideology to defend the practical consequences of their ideas in the realm of politics.
To be continued!
Language of Marxism – Debra M Johnson
“The day we see the truth and cease to speak is the day we begin to die”. – Martin Luther King
Recognizing the slippery slide to Marxism is “tricky”. What was considered unthinkable 60 years ago has gradually been normalized. The gradual removal of Christianity and patriotism from schools. The subtle changes in language and social norms. Suddenly people wake up and find they are trying to stop a charging bull in their midst. It’s likely that the “lockdown” of 2020 caused more parents to see what their children were learning in on line schools which has generated even more questions. Critical Race Theory has become a threat to be addressed but it’s been around in some form for far more than a century! More on that later.
To understand what is happening first requires a bit of foundation to recognize the connections which are happening right now in our government and public institutions. This article with address some of the language of this movement and how censorship and manipulation are influencing this movement to Marxism.
Understanding the language
An excellent primer for the language of critical race theory can be found at: https://americarenewing.com/issues/list-critical-race-theory-buzzwords/
If you look at this long list you will see words that have crept into institutions everywhere. You will see the language even in the evaluation measures for teachers in Floyd County Schools. You may have been forced into training at the workplace. Words like equity(vs equality), anti-racism, cultural competency, conscious and unconscious bias, Diversity Equity and Inclusion (as in new HR departments and training), culturally responsive teaching and many many more! These are examples of the less conspicuous language that can be slipped into policy with little to no push back. Who wouldn’t want to be culturally competent? Who would notice the vast difference between the words equity and equality?
The twisting of language facilitates the “mousetrap arguments” put forth by the far left progressives. But there is even more training in this form of debate in Saul Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals which identifies 13 steps for radicalization. Alinsky is considered the father of the modern Democratic Party. He died 50 years ago so you can see this effort has been around a very long time! More on the 13 steps later!
Part of the success of this movement has been rooted in the cooperation of avenues of communication. This can be seen locally in local board meetings that are held during the day and working people are not able to attend. The good news is that this will change for the school board in Floyd starting August 9th!! Part of the exposure to the general public during the lockdowns was that meetings were public on zoom because they had to be open to the public, even though people were locked away. People could see the decisions being made. Why not open all meetings up to on line? It was accomplished last year with little difficulty. At least the Floyd County school board responded to a more reasonable time for open meetings so get involved! Go to the meetings and speak your mind! Decisions otherwise become a rubber stamp for bureaucrats who do not have the will of the people in mind.
But censorship is much deeper! Virtually all main stream media is complicit in distorting reality. How can you tell? Look for several ways this is accomplished. First is to simply not address events contrary to the political agenda. Second is to distort information to cause fear or outrage and Third is to simply spread false information. VP Harris going really nowhere near the border and declaring that great progress has been made. Mayor Lightfoot in Chicago declaring that crime as been reduced in Chicago! Sound bites for the main stream media. One must dig for information contrary to the accepted narrative. Big tech cooperates by banning, flagging, deleting information not supporting the accepted narrative. Many voters never even heard about Hunter Biden’s laptop as information was shut down completely. Theraputics for COVID that the WHO now supports as of late January are still blocked on social media. The reach of truthful information is limited. Even search engines censor! As an example search Saul Alinksy in google and see many articles on his great social contributions. Then use duckduckgo to get a real listing of the 13 steps for radicals. Unpleasant details are suppressed. Youtube deletes and bans videos of Trump speeches, Shouldn’t people be able to view all viewpoints and make their own decisions? Why is such an effort made to control the narrative? Look at statistics behind the claims made in media. For example if gun control will reduce gun violence look at the statistics – what happens in areas with strict gun control. If certain guns are banned how many shootings will that prevent? How many deaths were avoided by good people with guns? Will the laws proposed actually prevent crime?
Manipulation and Control
Hand in hand with censorship happening today is the practice of manipulation. In going to duckduckgo to search on this topic you can find that articles on manipulation and coercion come up and the steps used by government parallel the steps used by abusive partners! Yuri Bezmenov, a soviet journalist and KGB informant described it as Demoralization, Destabilization, Crisis, Normalization. Terms such as “Climate Crisis” and “new normal” come to mind. Do you recognize the phases of vaccine compliance (regardless of whether you are for or against!!!) Voluntary (out of fear?), Guilt (you’ll kill grandma), Incentives (win a lottery), Punishments (can’t travel, work, go to school). Next in these phases are Criminal Fines or Jail (implemented in mask mandates) and lastly hopefully not Kinetic (Military?)
Hopefully this sparks a bit of curiosity about what is going on in the country and the will to seek out alternative sources for information. Then make your own decisions.
To be continued!