What Is Critical Race Theory And Why Does MAGA Want To Stop Training Federal Employees With It?

What Is Critical Race Theory And Why Does MAGA Want To Stop Training Federal Employees With It?

critical race theory
What Is critical race theory and why does the MAGA administration want to stop training federal employees with it? Photo: President Donald Trump at a rally for Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith, R-Miss., at the Mississippi Coast Coliseum, Nov. 26, 2018, in Biloxi, Miss. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

According to the critical race theory (CRT), the law and legal institutions are inherently racist and that race itself “is a socially constructed concept that is used by white people to further their economic and political interests at the expense of people of color,” as defined by Britannica.

It’s a school of thought that Trump calls propaganda and he wants to stop training federal employees with it. 

The president is seeking to cut funding for racial sensitivity training based on critical race theory in federal agencies. POTUS called CRT racial sensitivity training “un-American” and “divisive,” according to a newly discovered White House memorandum obtained by The Washington Post. 

The memo, which was issued by White House Office of Management and Budget Director Russell Vought, said Trump wants to stop funding for the training sessions, labeling them “propaganda,” The Grio reported. The memo also said Trump felt the workplace programs “undercut our core values as Americans and drive division within our workforce.”

“The president has directed me to ensure that federal agencies cease and desist from using taxpayer dollars to fund these divisive, un-American propaganda training sessions,” the two-page memo read. 

The memo also directed federal agencies to compile a list of contracts and spending on training that involve topics such as critical race theory, white privilege and others “that it said taint the country and people as ‘inherently racist or evil.'”

The memo said that the OMB will instruct federal agencies and departments to “cancel any such contracts” and take away the money used for the sessions that propagate critical race theory.

CRT developed as a reaction to the idea that in the two decades since the Civil Rights Movement and subsequent legislation, racial inequality had been solved, affirmative action was no longer necessary and that the U.S. had become a color-blind society. The term was coined by legal scholar Kimberlé Crenshaw in the late 1980s. CRT highlights the ways that supposedly color-blind laws have permitted racial oppression and inequality to continue, ThoughtCo. reported. 

Legal scholars such as Crenshaw, Derrick Bell — who is often thought of as the forefather of CRT — and Richard Delgado are considered among the top CRT scholars. They have used CRT to critique whiteness and the ways it is socially constructed throughout history. 

“For example, various European groups—such as Irish and Jewish immigrants—were originally racialized as non-white when they began arriving in large numbers in the United States. These groups were eventually able to assimilate into whiteness or ‘become’ white, largely by distancing themselves from African Americans and adopting the Anglo mainstream’s racist attitudes toward them,” ThoughtCo. reported. 

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Critical race theory scholarship analyzes racism in the U.S. through the country’s legacy of slavery, the Civil Rights Movement and recent events while drawing from work by writers such as Sojourner Truth, Frederick Douglass, W.E.B. Du Bois, Martin Luther King, Jr. and others, Purdue University’s Online Writing Lab reported. 

Most critical race theory scholarship not only looks at how racism is pervasive throughout dominant society but how it also works to deny individuals many of the constitutional freedoms.