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Bill blocking accurate teaching of Tulsa Race Massacre sits on Governor’s Desk

by Nate Morris
Published: Last Updated on

A bill that would hinder full and accurate teaching of the Tulsa Race Massacre is awaiting Governor Stitt’s signature.

HB 1775, which passed with the support of 77 House Republicans, aims to limit teaching of racism and discrimination in schools. The bill prohibits teaching students about the dangers of a white supremacist culture and allows for teachers who violate it to face disciplinary action.

In May of 1921, a white supremacist mob from midtown and south Tulsa charged into Historic Greenwood. The terrorists burned businesses, looted homes and murdered hundreds of Black men, women and children. Almost all of Greenwood’s nearly 40 blocks were reduced to smoldering rubble when all was said and done. It was among the most destructive acts of racial terror in the history of the nation.

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The attack was hidden from Oklahoma’s curriculum for nearly 95 years; a statewide set of teaching guidelines was not introduced until last February.

How HB 1775 would prevent accurate teaching of the massacre

If signed into law, HB 1775 would complicate a teacher’s ability to cover the full history of the massacre. The bill prohibits teachers from educating students that:

  • “an individual, by virtue of his or her race or sex, bears responsibility for actions committed in the past by other members of the same race or sex,” or that
  • “meritocracy or traits such as a hard work ethic are racist or sexist or were created by members of a particular race to oppress members of another race.”

The bill effectively prohibits teachers from engaging students in dialogue around systemic racism and white supremacy. The bill also contains an emergency clause to make its implementation automatic after the Governor’s signature. The clause states that the bill’s enactment is “immediately necessary for the preservation of the public peace, health or safety.”

The political agenda of Oklahoma’s Republican legislators

One of the bill’s lead supporters, Republican state representative Justin Humphrey, made the political motives behind the bill clear. In a floor debate earlier this week, Humphrey claimed that he was voting in favor of the bill because he viewed Black Lives Matter as a terrorist organization. Humphrey went on to compare the peaceful movement for racial justice to the Ku Klux Klan.

Others in favor of the bill have latched onto the rhetoric of former President Trump.  These proponents have worked to denounce concepts like “Critical Race Theory” and the 1619 Project. Lawmakers and conservative activists alike have balked at anti-racist education, claiming it’s being “forced upon” White teachers and students. 

In reality, Critical Race Theory is simply the notion that race is a social construct and that systems of government have been created in a way that favors White Americans. The 1619 Project, a powerful accounting of the start of the US slave trade, details the history of racism in the country since America’s founding.

HB 1775 also discriminates against LGBTQ+ youth

In addition to hindering discussions about race in Oklahoma’s classrooms, the bill also prohibits sexual diversity training. These trainings would support teachers in making classrooms inclusive spaces for all LGBTQ+ students. The bill is another assault against gay and trans youth after lawmakers passed SB2. That bill barred trans students from competing in sport aligned with their gender. 

Groups urge Governor Stitt to veto the bill

When HB 1775 made its way through the House this week, no Republican lawmaker from Tulsa challenged it. One hundred years after the mass murder of Black Tulsans, the state is poised to attempt to cover-up the history of Greenwood once again. Groups across the state, including the Tulsa Race Massacre Commission, are urging the governor to veto the bill.

On May 31, 1921, the epicenter of Black American wealth was destroyed when white supremacists burned Greenwood to the ground. A century later, that same system of racism and white supremacy is at work in the legislature. This time, it is attempting to hide history altogether.

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36 comments

Letter to the editor: Gov. Stitt should veto HB 1775 because it upholds white supremacy May 7, 2021 - 6:01 pm

[…] and it loosens those in positions of power from the responsibility of making amends for the former actions of their government. They’re actions which are still wreaking havoc in communities of color […]

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gregbreakpointgmailcom May 7, 2021 - 7:23 pm

Who teaches that hard work and merit are racist? Oh, that’s right black people are lazy and shiftless and only racist white people would force them to work hard. This is written in the language of the bill and is blatantly racist language on it’s face perpetrating the image white supremacists teach about black people. So teaching racism is a good thing by the OK legislature is just fine but mention it in class and you’re fired? Lord have Mercy on their souls. I fear these “representatives” are headed due South to Hades.

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Editorial: Remove Governor Stitt from Tulsa Race Massacre Commission for signing HB 1775 May 7, 2021 - 7:42 pm

[…] just weeks until the centennial of the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre, this bill has re-opened deep wounds in Tulsa’s Black community. Many believe the law will make […]

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The Value Gap: ‘We need economic justice’: 100 years after the Tulsa Race Massacre, a descendant fights for reparations and racial equity – Main Street Alerts June 1, 2021 - 12:06 pm

[…] of the bill, however, say it is trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist and would hinder accurate teaching about the 1921 massacre, which was left out of the state’s school curriculum for […]

Reply
The Value Gap: ‘We need economic justice’: 100 years after the Tulsa Race Massacre, a descendant fights for reparations and racial equity – Daily Buzz June 1, 2021 - 12:07 pm

[…] of the bill, however, say it is trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist and would hinder accurate teaching about the 1921 massacre, which was left out of the state’s school curriculum for […]

Reply
‘We need economic justice’: 100 years after the Tulsa Race Massacre, a descendant fights for reparations and racial equity - Idman news June 1, 2021 - 12:08 pm

[…] of the bill, however, say it is trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist and would hinder accurate teaching about the 1921 massacre, which was left out of the state’s school curriculum for […]

Reply
‘We need economic justice’: 100 years after the Tulsa Race Massacre, a descendant fights for reparations and racial equity | International News June 1, 2021 - 12:09 pm

[…] of the bill, however, say it is trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist and would hinder accurate teaching about the 1921 massacre, which was left out of the state’s school curriculum for […]

Reply
The Value Gap: ‘We need economic justice’: 100 years after the Tulsa Race Massacre, a descendant fights for reparations and racial equity – Jameson Research June 1, 2021 - 12:13 pm

[…] of the bill, however, say it is trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist and would hinder accurate teaching about the 1921 massacre, which was left out of the state’s school curriculum for […]

Reply
The Value Gap: ‘We need economic justice’: 100 years after the Tulsa Race Massacre, a descendant fights for reparations and racial equity – Big Board Insider June 1, 2021 - 12:15 pm

[…] of the bill, however, say it is trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist and would hinder accurate teaching about the 1921 massacre, which was left out of the state’s school curriculum for […]

Reply
The Value Gap: ‘We need economic justice’: 100 years after the Tulsa Race Massacre, a descendant fights for reparations and racial equity – CheckRSS June 1, 2021 - 12:18 pm

[…] of the bill, however, say it is trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist and would hinder accurate teaching about the 1921 massacre, which was left out of the state’s school curriculum for […]

Reply
The Value Gap: ‘We need economic justice’: 100 years after the Tulsa Race Massacre, a descendant fights for reparations and racial equity - Mega Stock Alert June 1, 2021 - 12:23 pm

[…] of the bill, however, say it is trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist and would hinder accurate teaching about the 1921 massacre, which was left out of the state’s school curriculum for […]

Reply
The Value Gap: ‘We need economic justice’: 100 years after the Tulsa Race Massacre, a descendant fights for reparations and racial equity – Profit Point Studio June 1, 2021 - 12:24 pm

[…] of the bill, however, say it is trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist and would hinder accurate teaching about the 1921 massacre, which was left out of the state’s school curriculum for […]

Reply
The Value Gap: ‘We need economic justice’: 100 years after the Tulsa Race Massacre, a descendant fights for reparations and racial equity – Financial Market Minds June 1, 2021 - 12:25 pm

[…] of the bill, however, say it is trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist and would hinder accurate teaching about the 1921 massacre, which was left out of the state’s school curriculum for […]

Reply
‘We need economic justice’: 100 years after the Tulsa Race Massacre, a descendant fights for reparations and racial equity – Voice Press June 1, 2021 - 12:31 pm

[…] of the bill, however, say it is trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist and would hinder accurate teaching about the 1921 massacre, which was left out of the state’s school curriculum for […]

Reply
The Value Gap: ‘We need economic justice’: 100 years after the Tulsa Race Massacre, a descendant fights for reparations and racial equity – UpTrendAlerts June 1, 2021 - 12:39 pm

[…] of the bill, however, say it is trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist and would hinder accurate teaching about the 1921 massacre, which was left out of the state’s school curriculum for […]

Reply
The Value Gap: ‘We need economic justice’: 100 years after the Tulsa Race Massacre, a descendant fights for reparations and racial equity – Daily Market 411 June 1, 2021 - 1:05 pm

[…] of the bill, however, say it is trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist and would hinder accurate teaching about the 1921 massacre, which was left out of the state’s school curriculum for […]

Reply
The Value Gap: ‘We need economic justice’: 100 years after the Tulsa Race Massacre, a descendant fights for reparations and racial equity – Investing Chatter June 1, 2021 - 1:07 pm

[…] of the bill, however, say it is trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist and would hinder accurate teaching about the 1921 massacre, which was left out of the state’s school curriculum for […]

Reply
The Tulsa Race Massacre destroyed generations of Black wealth. This descendant is seeking ‘economic justice’ – Knocking Live June 1, 2021 - 4:48 pm

[…] of the bill, however, say it is trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist and would hinder accurate teaching about the 1921 massacre, which was left out of the state’s school curriculum for […]

Reply
The Tulsa Race Bloodbath destroyed generations of Black wealth. This descendant is searching for ‘financial justice’ - Latest News Today June 1, 2021 - 4:51 pm

[…] of the bill, however, say it is trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist and would hinder accurate teaching about the 1921 massacre, which was left out of the state’s school curriculum for […]

Reply
The Tulsa Race Massacre destroyed generations of Black wealth. This descendant is seeking ‘economic justice’ - www.blackstockstube.com June 1, 2021 - 4:51 pm

[…] of the bill, however, say it is trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist and would hinder accurate teaching about the 1921 massacre, which was left out of the state’s school curriculum for […]

Reply
The Tulsa Race Massacre destroyed generations of Black wealth. This descendant is seeking ‘economic justice’ – Stay Current News June 1, 2021 - 4:53 pm

[…] of the bill, however, say it is trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist and would hinder accurate teaching about the 1921 massacre, which was left out of the state’s school curriculum for […]

Reply
The Tulsa Race Massacre destroyed generations of Black wealth. This descendant is seeking ‘economic justice’ | Thaifrx.com June 1, 2021 - 5:02 pm

[…] of the bill, however, say it is trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist and would hinder accurate teaching about the 1921 massacre, which was left out of the state’s school curriculum for […]

Reply
The Value Gap: The Tulsa Race Massacre destroyed generations of Black wealth. This descendant is seeking ‘economic justice’ – AxeDaily June 1, 2021 - 5:09 pm

[…] of the bill, however, say it is trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist and would hinder accurate teaching about the 1921 massacre, which was left out of the state’s school curriculum for […]

Reply
The Value Gap: The Tulsa Race Massacre destroyed generations of Black wealth. This descendant is seeking ‘economic justice’ - Mega Stock Alert June 1, 2021 - 5:24 pm

[…] of the bill, however, say it is trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist and would hinder accurate teaching about the 1921 massacre, which was left out of the state’s school curriculum for […]

Reply
The Value Gap: The Tulsa Race Massacre destroyed generations of Black wealth. This descendant is seeking ‘economic justice’ – Profit Point Studio June 1, 2021 - 5:25 pm

[…] of the bill, however, say it is trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist and would hinder accurate teaching about the 1921 massacre, which was left out of the state’s school curriculum for […]

Reply
The Tulsa Race Massacre destroyed generations of Black wealth. This descendant is seeking ‘economic justice’ | Techy News June 1, 2021 - 5:25 pm

[…] of the bill, however, say it is trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist and would hinder accurate teaching about the 1921 massacre, which was left out of the state’s school curriculum for […]

Reply
The Tulsa Race Massacre destroyed generations of Black wealth. This descendant is seeking ‘economic justice’ – Future Wealth Daily June 1, 2021 - 5:29 pm

[…] of the bill, however, say it is trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist and would hinder accurate teaching about the 1921 massacre, which was left out of the state’s school curriculum for […]

Reply
The Tulsa Race Massacre destroyed generations of Black wealth. This descendant is seeking ‘economic justice’ – Wealth Creation Investing June 1, 2021 - 5:30 pm

[…] of the bill, however, say it is trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist and would hinder accurate teaching about the 1921 massacre, which was left out of the state’s school curriculum for […]

Reply
The Value Gap: The Tulsa Race Massacre destroyed generations of Black wealth. This descendant is seeking ‘economic justice’ – Financial Market Minds June 1, 2021 - 5:32 pm

[…] of the bill, however, say it is trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist and would hinder accurate teaching about the 1921 massacre, which was left out of the state’s school curriculum for […]

Reply
The Tulsa Race Massacre destroyed generations of Black wealth. This descendant is seeking ‘economic justice’ – Wealth Newsletter Daily June 1, 2021 - 5:38 pm

[…] of the bill, however, say it is trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist and would hinder accurate teaching about the 1921 massacre, which was left out of the state’s school curriculum for […]

Reply
The Value Gap: The Tulsa Race Massacre destroyed generations of Black wealth. This descendant is seeking ‘economic justice’ – Big Board Insider June 1, 2021 - 5:48 pm

[…] of the bill, however, say it is trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist and would hinder accurate teaching about the 1921 massacre, which was left out of the state’s school curriculum for […]

Reply
The Value Gap: The Tulsa Race Massacre destroyed generations of Black wealth. This descendant is seeking ‘economic justice’ – investordummies June 1, 2021 - 6:05 pm

[…] of the bill, however, say it is trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist and would hinder accurate teaching about the 1921 massacre, which was left out of the state’s school curriculum for […]

Reply
The Value Gap: The Tulsa Race Massacre destroyed generations of Black wealth. This descendant is seeking ‘economic justice’ – The Wealth Creator June 1, 2021 - 6:26 pm

[…] of the bill, however, say it is trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist and would hinder accurate teaching about the 1921 massacre, which was left out of the state’s school curriculum for […]

Reply
The Value Gap: The Tulsa Race Massacre destroyed generations of Black wealth. This descendant is seeking ‘economic justice’ – My American Dreamer June 2, 2021 - 8:30 am

[…] of the bill, however, say it is trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist and would hinder accurate teaching about the 1921 massacre, which was left out of the state’s school curriculum for […]

Reply
The Tulsa Race Massacre destroyed generations of Black wealth. This descendant is seeking ‘economic justice’ June 2, 2021 - 8:31 am

[…] of the bill, however, say it is trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist and would hinder accurate teaching about the 1921 massacre, which was left out of the state’s school curriculum for […]

Reply
Behind the failed attempt to undermine the Tulsa schools bond vote June 10, 2021 - 1:07 pm

[…] both the county GOP and Parent Voice Oklahoma have also been vocal advocates for the controversial HB 1775.  That bill penalizes teachers for engaging in critical conversations about race in the classroom. […]

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