It Is Called History

Bit of a different chirp today. I looked up the definition of Critical Race Theory (CRT) and of course got a number of different very confusing definitions and explanations as to what it is. One of the simplest I saw was the following.”

“…critical race theory states that U.S. social institutions (e.g., the criminal justice system, education system, labor market, housing market, and healthcare system) are laced with racism embedded in laws, regulations, rules, and procedures that lead to differential outcomes by race.”

Where am I going with this? CRT is a hot topic in the US right now. States, mostly in the South, have banned the teaching of CRT. It is a theory. It is a complex theory at that. But a number of these states have gone further than banning the teaching of a concept. Certain states have ensured that realities such as slavery be given little or no place in teachings. A general rationale for this is “You don’t want little Johnny to be traumatized and feel bad about things like this”. Okayyyy. Well, what if little Johnny was Black and lived in the US from the 1600’s on. He must have felt pretty bad about being a slave, not being able to vote, having to ride in the back of a bus or having to use separate washrooms. Kind of traumatizing.

Yet, the people supporting the banning of CRT are the same people upset at the taking down of statues of confederate figures and of confederate flags. “You are eliminating history” No. It can still be taught in schools. Oh wait. You want to ban that. Well the ugly parts anyway. Like slavery and discrimination, in part, through laws “Got to sit in the back of the bus”.

I could go on with the fact that Germany has no statues of Nazi figures or Nazi flags (except in museums), but every school kid has to visit a concentration camp. But why bother.

Canada has its own ugly history, namely, Residential Schools. I know when I was a kid I was not taught about it. But Canadians, for the most part, have embraced the teaching of such in our grade schools. For example the teaching, of Residential School history is mandatory, starting in Grade four in Ontario, grade five in BC and grade six in Saskatchewan.

One last comment on this chirp rant. I saw this on a FaceBook post this morning which sums it up.

“Why are people about about Critical Race Theory? It is called history.”

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