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In yet another conservative move to restrict the teachings of authentic Black experiences, the GOP continues to implement a culture war and has become increasingly more punitive against those who teach the reality of systemic racism.
Senate Bill 2113 says it would prohibit “critical race theory.” However, the main text of the legislation does not mention or define the theory, and many supporters of the bill also have said they cannot define it. This is in large part because none of them were taught Critical Race Theory in grade school, just as it isn’t being taught in grade schools today.
Critical race theory is a graduate-level academic framework that examines how racism has shaped public policy and institutions such as the legal system, and how those have perpetuated the dominance of Caucasian society. Mississippi Superintendent of Education Carey Wright said critical race theory is not taught in the state’s schools. The University of Mississippi law school offers an elective class on the theory.
Yet, this fundamental truth hasn’t stopped Gov. Reeves, who said in a video posted on social media, “Contrary to what some critics may claim, this bill in no way, in no shape, and in no form prohibits the teaching of history. Any claim that this bill will somehow stop Mississippi kids from learning about American history is just flat-out wrong.”
White people hate being uncomfortable. We do, too.
The new law says no school, community college, or university could teach that any “sex, race, ethnicity, religion or national origin is inherently superior or inferior.”
The Mississippi Republican-controlled House voted 75-43 to pass the bill on March 3 after a six-hour debate in which several Black lawmakers argued strongly against the inevitable law. They said the legislation could squelch honest discussion about the harmful effects of racism because parents could complain if history lessons make white children uncomfortable.
When the bill passed the Republican-controlled Senate in January, all of the Black senators withheld their votes and walked out in protest.
Mississippi joins other conservative states in banning CRT
While walking out sends a message, the louder and more resounding impact of a generation not knowing of American systems designed to oppress some and uplift others will surely be felt for years to come. Misinformation, disinformation, propaganda, and fake news have existed for years.