Teachers Learn the Wrong Lesson

July 9, 2021

America's largest teachers' unions must be competing to see who can most offend parents with their woke ideology. "How to Be an Antiracist" author Ibram X. Kendi delivered the keynote address at the American Federation of Teachers' (AFT) annual meeting Wednesday. Kendi's book says, "There is no in-between safe space of 'not racist.' The claim of 'not racist' neutrality is a mask for racism." Only last week, the National Education Association (NEA) made it clear: "we oppose attempts to ban critical race theory and/or The 1619 Project," celebrating CRT in dozens of resolutions. The NEA and AFT combined have over 4.5 million members.

Rep. Dan Bishop (R-N.C.) says it's no accident that both major teachers' unions endorsed CRT within a week. "The Left is in disarray about this," he pointed out, so "they are changing their answers almost on a daily basis.... They know they're losing, and they're trying to find some solid ground to plant a flag on." First, they said CRT opponents didn't know what it was. "Then they [said] it's just an academic doctrine, and then they [said] it's not being taught." Now the unions have not only admitted to teaching it, but have promised to "litigate to defend teachers who teach it in defiance of bans by state legislatures."

The Left's search for solid ground continues. In the same speech that she subtly promised to defend teachers for teaching CRT history, AFT President Randi Weingarten also said, "Let's be clear. Critical race theory is not taught in elementary schools or middle schools or high schools." The AFT initially published the keynote address by "antiracist" academic Kendi to YouTube, but after backlash they made the video private. In an eerie parallel last week, the NEA published the resolutions endorsing CRT to their website before removing them.

Teachers' unions have criticized state efforts against CRT as restricting free speech. Bishop disagreed. "This is a question of prescribing curriculum for public schools," he explained. States have directed that "all honest history should be taught." The woke Left is "not really explaining critical race theory. What they're doing is practicing critical race theory." They are slipping in CRT by the backdoor, and that's dishonest. Teaching history warts and all is the only way to guard against past mistakes. But the Left is determined America is nothing but warts. They insist that America is irredeemably racist, that children should be judged based on their skin color. On Independence Day, the Utah chapter of BLM called the American flag "a symbol of hatred." This is unacceptable in America's public schools.

The teachers' unions are resorting to duplicity because they fear parents. "They are seeing moms and dads across the country coming at them with everything they got," said Bishop. In a June poll 61 percent of registered voters agreed children should not be taught "that America is structurally racist and dominated by white supremacy." In a brand new poll, 52 percent of likely voters said it is "very important" for schools to "teach the traditional values of western civilization," and another 26 percent believe it is "somewhat important." The first half of 2021 saw more school board recalls than any year since 2006. All across America, parents are standing up and taking action. "Do not pass up this opportunity. This is the time to double down and make yourself heard," Bishop told parents. "This is a spiritual war," he warned. Our children's souls are at stake.