The GOP's 'Critical Race Theory' Fixation, Explained - The Atlantic

  
Via:  CB  •  7 months ago  •  80 comments

By:   Adam Harris (The Atlantic)

The GOP's 'Critical Race Theory' Fixation, Explained - The Atlantic
How conservative politicians and pundits became fixated on an academic approach

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Researchers have now accumulated ample evidence that racial covenants in property deeds and redlining by the Federal Housing Authority—banned more than 60 years ago—remain a major contributor to the gulf in homeownership, and thus wealth, between Black and white people. 
By Adam Harris

S E E D E D   C O N T E N T



How conservative politicians and pundits became fixated on an academic approach

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May 7, 2021

On January 12, Keith Ammon, a Republican member of the New Hampshire House of Representatives, introduced a bill that would bar schools as well as organizations that have entered into a contract or subcontract with the state from endorsing "divisive concepts." Specifically, the measure would forbid "race or sex scapegoating," questioning the value of meritocracy, and suggesting that New Hampshire—or the United States—is "fundamentally racist."

Ammon's bill is one of a dozen that Republicans have recently introduced in state legislatures and the United States Congress that contain similar prohibitions. In Arkansas, lawmakers have approved a measure that would ban state contractors from offering training that promotes "division between, resentment of, or social justice for" groups based on race, gender, or political affiliation. The Idaho legislature just passed a bill that would bar institutions of public education from compelling "students to personally affirm, adopt, or adhere" to specific beliefs about race, sex, or religion. The Louisiana legislature is weighing a nearly identical measure.

The language of these bills is anodyne and fuzzy— compel , for instance, is never defined in the Idaho legislation—and that ambiguity appears to be deliberate. According to Ammon, "using taxpayer funds to promote ideas such as 'one race is inherently superior to another race or sex' … only exacerbates our differences." But critics of these efforts warn that the bills would effectively prevent public schools and universities from holding discussions about racism; the New Hampshire measure in particular would ban companies that do business with government entities from conducting diversity, equity, and inclusion programs. "The vagueness of the language is really the point," Leah Cohen, an organizer with Granite State Progress, a liberal nonprofit based in Concord, told me. "With this really broad brushstroke, we anticipate that that will be used more to censor conversations about race and equity."

Most legal scholars say that these bills impinge on the right to free speech and will likely be dismissed in court. "Of the legislative language so far, none of the bills are fully constitutional," Joe Cohn, the legislative and policy director of the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, told me, "and if it isn't fully constitutional, there's a word for that: It means it's unconstitutional." This does not appear to concern the bills' sponsors, though. The larger purpose, it seems, is to rally the Republican base—to push back against the recent reexaminations of the role that slavery and segregation have played in American history and the attempts to redress those historical offenses. The shorthand for the Republicans' bogeyman is an idea that has until now mostly lived in academia: critical race theory.

The late Harvard Law professor Derrick Bell is credited as the father of critical race theory. He began conceptualizing the idea in the 1970s as a way to understand how race and American law interact, and developed a course on the subject. In 1980, Bell resigned his position at Harvard because of what he viewed as the institution's discriminatory hiring practices, especially its failure to hire an Asian American woman he'd recommended.

Black students—including the future legal scholar Kimberle Crenshaw, who enrolled at Harvard Law in 1981—felt the void created by his departure. Bell had been the only Black law professor among the faculty, and in his absence, the school no longer offered a course explicitly addressing race. When students asked administrators what could be done, Crenshaw says they received a terse response. "What is it that is so special about race and law that you have to have a course that examines it?" Crenshaw has recalled administrators asking. The administration's inability to see the importance of understanding race and the law, she says, "got us thinking about how do we articulate that this is important and that law schools should include" the subject in their curricula.

Crenshaw and her classmates asked 12 scholars of color to come to campus and lead discussions about Bell's book Race, Racism, and American Law . With that, critical race theory began in earnest. The approach "is often disruptive because its commitment to anti-racism goes well beyond civil rights, integration, affirmative action, and other liberal measures," Bell explained in 1995. The theory's proponents argue that the nation's sordid history of slavery, segregation, and discrimination is embedded in our laws, and continues to play a central role in preventing Black Americans and other marginalized groups from living lives untouched by racism.

For some, the theory was a revelatory way to understand inequality. Take housing, for example. Researchers have now accumulated ample evidence that racial covenants in property deeds and redlining by the Federal Housing Authority—banned more than 60 years ago—remain a major contributor to the gulf in homeownership, and thus wealth, between Black and white people. Others, perhaps most prominently Randall Kennedy, who joined the Harvard Law faculty a few years after Bell left, questioned how widely the theory could be applied. In a paper titled "Racial Critiques of Legal Academia," Kennedy argued that white racism was not the only reason so few "minority scholars" were members of law-school faculties. Conservative scholars argued that critical race theory is reductive—that it treats race as the only factor in social identity.

As with other academic frameworks before it, the nuances of critical race theory—and the debate around it—were obscured when it escaped the ivory tower. It first entered public discourse in the early 1990s, when President Bill Clinton nominated the University of Pennsylvania Law School professor Lani Guinier to run the Justice Department's Civil Rights Division. Republicans mounted an aggressive and ultimately successful campaign to prevent her appointment, tagging her the "Quota Queen." Among the many reasons her adversaries said she was wrong for the job was that she had been "championing a radical school of thought called 'critical race theory.'" The theory soon stood in for anything resembling an examination of America's history with race. Conservatives would boil it down further: Critical race theory taught Americans to hate America. Today, across the country, school curricula and workplace trainings include materials that defenders and opponents alike insist are inspired by critical race theory but that academic critical race theorists do not characterize as such.

. . . .

If a single person bears the most responsibility for the surge in conservative interest in critical race theory, it is probably Christopher Rufo.

Last summer, Rufo, a 36-year-old senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute, a libertarian think tank, received a tip from a municipal employee in Seattle. (Rufo had lived in the city and, in 2018, ran unsuccessfully for city council.) According to the whistleblower, the city was conducting "internalized racial superiority" training sessions for its employees. Rufo submitted a Freedom of Information Act request and wrote about his findings for the institute's public-policy magazine.

"In conceptual terms," Rufo wrote, "the city frames the discussion around the idea that black Americans are reducible to the essential quality of 'blackness' and white Americans are reducible to the essential quality of 'whiteness'—that is, the new metaphysics of good and evil." The training was rampant, he wrote, infecting every part of the city's municipal system. "It is part of a nationwide movement to make this kind of identity politics the foundation of our public discourse. It may be coming soon to a city or town near you." His article—which did not include the phrase critical race theory —inspired a rush of whistleblowers from school districts and federal agencies, who reached out to him complaining about diversity training they had been invited to attend or had heard about.

A month later, Rufo employed the term for the first time in an article. "Critical race theory—the academic discourse centered on the concepts of 'whiteness,' 'white fragility,' and 'white privilege'—is spreading rapidly through the federal government," he wrote. He related anecdotes about training influenced by critical race theory at the Environmental Protection Agency, the FBI, and the Treasury Department, among others. In early September, Tucker Carlson invited him on his Fox News show during which Rufo warned viewers that critical race theory had pervaded every institution of the federal government and was being "weaponized" against Americans. He called on President Donald Trump to ban such training in all federal departments.

"Luckily, the president was watching the show and instructed his Chief of Staff to contact me the next morning," Rufo wrote to me. (He would agree to be interviewed only by email.) Within three weeks, Trump had signed an executive order banning the use of critical race theory by federal departments and contractors in diversity training. "And thus," he wrote to me, "the real fight against critical race theory began."

Trump's executive order was immediately challenged in court. Nonprofit organizations that provide these training sessions argued that the order violated their free-speech rights and hampered their ability to conduct their business. In December, a federal judge agreed; President Joe Biden rescinded the order the day he took office. But by then, critical race theory was already a part of the conservative lexicon. Since Trump's executive order, Rufo told me, he has provided his analysis "to a half-dozen state legislatures, the United States House of Representatives, and the United States Senate." One such state legislature was New Hampshire's; on February 18, the lower chamber held a hearing to discuss Keith Ammon's bill. Rufo was among those who testified in support of it.

. . . .

Although free-speech advocates are confident that bills like Ammon's will not survive challenges in court, they believe the real point is to scare off companies, schools, and government agencies from discussing systemic racism. "What these bills are designed to do is prevent conversations about how racism exists at a systemic level in that we all have implicit biases that lead to decisions that, accumulated, lead to significant racial disparities," Gilles Bissonnette, the legal director of the ACLU of New Hampshire, told me. "The proponents of this bill want none of those discussions to happen. They want to suppress that type of speech."

. . . .

For Republicans, the end goal of all these bills is clear: initiating another battle in the culture wars and holding on to some threadbare mythology of the nation that has been challenged in recent years. What's less clear is whether average voters care much about the debate. In a recent Atlantic /Leger poll, 52 percent of respondents who identified as Republicans said that states should pass laws banning schools from teaching critical race theory, but just 30 percent of self-identified independents were willing to say the same. Meanwhile, a strong majority of Americans, 78 percent, either had not heard of critical race theory or were unsure whether they had.


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CB
Professor Principal
1  seeder  CB     7 months ago
[A]fter President Biden’s first joint address to Congress—and as Idaho was preparing to pass its bill—Senator Tim Scott stood in front of United States and South Carolina flags to deliver the Republican response. “From colleges to corporations to our culture, people are making money and gaining power by pretending we haven’t made any progress,” Scott said. “You know this stuff is wrong. Hear me clearly: America is not a racist country.” Rufo immediately knew what he meant. “Senator Tim Scott denounces critical race theory in his response to Biden’s speech tonight,” he tweeted. “We have turned critical race theory into a national issue and conservative political leaders are starting to fight.”

In your opinion, have conservatives succeeded in turning CRT (Critical Race Theory) taboo?

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
2  JohnRussell    7 months ago

This article probably goes into too much depth on the topic to catch on on Newstalkers, but it is a nice summary. 

Christopher Rufo was an out of work travel documentary filmmaker who needed a way to make some cash. Grifting on the critical race theory theme gave him name recognition and a chance to cash in a little. To this day he still has a pinned tweet at the top of his twitter feed asking people to send him money every month so he can continue to fight the evil of CRT. 

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
2.1  seeder  CB   replied to  JohnRussell @2    7 months ago

I hope this article gives some depth to this topic (and there is more on the "Seeded content" link), because some conservatives are using the phrase CRT to shut down inquiry and to churn up murkiness around blackness and whiteness. That is, instead of inviting listening to one another which is what is needed, these people want people to ignore, talk pass, or shout at one another. Result: No depth to the discussion.

I will be attempting to pull and quote some information from the late Harvard Law professor Derrick Bell, who is credited as the father of critical race theory.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
Professor Principal
3  Nerm_L    7 months ago

 A core tenet of critical race theory is that race (not racism) is an artificial social construct.  The theory is that racial identity is like gender identity; an artificial and arbitrary distinction established by social convention and stereotypes.  CRT was intended to do away with racial identity.  

CRT cannot be taught using concepts of 'whiteness' or 'blackness'.  The goal of CRT is to eliminate 'whiteness' and 'blackness' from society.  For CRT to succeed it would be necessary to remove all racial identity from society.  That is the measure of social equity.  The Black community cannot achieve equity without eliminating the racial identity of 'Black community'.

Critical Race Theory, as it is being taught in primary schools, is an outgrowth of a philosophy of education called Constructivism.   

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
3.1  seeder  CB   replied to  Nerm_L @3    7 months ago

Well Nerm, it will be interesting for me to attempt to 'flesh' all this out in the coming days and weeks. Here's to our efforts!

 
 
 
Nerm_L
Professor Principal
3.1.1  Nerm_L  replied to  CB @3.1    7 months ago
Well Nerm, it will be interesting for me to attempt to 'flesh' all this out in the coming days and weeks. Here's to our efforts!

The issue of racial identity is exactly the same as the issue of gender identity in the context of education.  We've seen the academic efforts to establish gender neutral language.  Those academic efforts will also extend to establishing race neutral language.

We've seen the academic declarations that gender identity is determined by the individual and not determined by society.  The same is true of racial identity.

I've seen complaints that there is a concerted effort to destroy the unity of the Black community and eliminate Black identity.  That is correct.  According to constructivism, the concept of 'Black community' and 'Black identity' are artificial constructs imposed onto individuals by society.  A societal distinction of 'Black community' and 'Black identity' must be eliminated in the same manner as societal distinctions of 'gender identity'.

So, fleshing out the fundamental approach adopted by academia must incorporate racially neutral language.  As an example, the history of slavery must be taught in a racially neutral manner.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
3.1.2  seeder  CB   replied to  Nerm_L @3.1.1    7 months ago

The thing is we all should want diversity and fair-treatment, but devious politics and politicians are forces to be reckoned with! When everything can be done with 'decency and good order' we will have finally matured somewhat as a nation; as many becoming one. Here's to better positive outcomes.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
Professor Principal
3.1.3  Nerm_L  replied to  CB @3.1.2    7 months ago
The thing is we all should want diversity and fair-treatment, but devious politics and politicians are forces to be reckoned with! When everything can be done with 'decency and good order' we will have finally matured somewhat as a nation; as many becoming one. Here's to better positive outcomes.

Does that mean a diversity of individuals or a diversity of societal distinctions?  Within the context of constructivism, one precludes the other; within that context it's not possible to have both.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
3.1.4  seeder  CB   replied to  Nerm_L @3.1.3    7 months ago

Mature people can handle diversity in all its myriad forms. I mean really. It is shocking and at the same time a realization that people who can't 'create peace' and 'maintain  peace' with other peaceful people without looking for envy, jealousy, or hatred as distinctions that make for reactions are for all their other good points and accomplishments and embellishments immature people.

Nerm, racism, sexism, all the negative 'isms are sicknesses that corrupt and fatigue the health of our wholly, local, state, federal, and world 'body.'

 
 
 
Drinker of the Wry
Freshman Principal
3.1.5  Drinker of the Wry  replied to  CB @3.1.4    7 months ago
Mature people can handle diversity in all its myriad forms

Ok.

It is shocking and at the same time a realization that people who can't 'create peace' and 'maintain  peace' with other peaceful people without looking for envy, jealousy, or hatred as distinctions that make for reactions are for all their other good points and accomplishments and embellishments immature people.

What does this 49 word sentence mean?

racism, sexism, all the negative 'isms are sicknesses that corrupt and fatigue the health of our wholly, 

Wholly?

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
3.1.6  seeder  CB   replied to  Drinker of the Wry @3.1.5    7 months ago

The "49-er" means we can do better. "Be best" some lady recently stated. Sat aside the BS and just be frank and nice to other citizens. We all want the same thing here at heart. Peace. More Peace. And Calm.

"Wholly" yes. Whole. At whatever maximum, at what ever connective points along the road of life we need to get well and stay well to make the rest of our 'systems' up to and including the Earth. Negative 'isms' continue to make us dis-eased.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
Professor Principal
3.1.7  Nerm_L  replied to  CB @3.1.4    7 months ago
Mature people can handle diversity in all its myriad forms. I mean really. It is shocking and at the same time a realization that people who can't 'create peace' and 'maintain  peace' with other peaceful people without looking for envy, jealousy, or hatred as distinctions that make for reactions are for all their other good points and accomplishments and embellishments immature people.

That avoids the central issue by attempting to divert attention onto blaming others.

The central issue is whether 'diversity' means individual diversity or a diversity of societal distinctions?  There isn't a wrong answer to that question.  But it must be understood that choosing one will establish constraints, limitations, and requirements that excludes the other.

Individual diversity and a diversity of societal distinctions are mutually exclusionary.  It's impossible to have both.

Mature people do handle diversity fairly well on an individual basis.  But when a group (or tribe) is established then the diversity of individuality is lost.  The group is formed based upon some identifiable distinction and all members of the group shared that identifiable distinction; the group itself is not diverse and cannot be made diverse.

A group has advantages by creating the power of numbers.  But establishing the group loses individual diversity.  The group acts as a group to maintain the power of numbers and not as a collection of diverse individuals.  Individual diversity gives up the power of numbers.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
3.1.8  seeder  CB   replied to  Nerm_L @3.1.7    7 months ago
The central issue is whether 'diversity' means individual diversity or a diversity of societal distinctions?  There isn't a wrong answer to that question.  But it must be understood that choosing one will establish constraints, limitations, and requirements that excludes the other.

Of course. Compromise is a good constraint. Especially in community/ies. We give up some individuality to form a better union with a 'sea' of others in our country. For every group that won't accept a, or several constraints, it bucks and creates friction 'zones' in that area. I know people won't like the tone of that last paragraph, but this nation has a responsibility to serve all of its citizens and not to separate and lift one group higher than another.

As long as people are being "good" citizens we all have a responsibility to allow, whatever behavior and conduct, that good comes packaged. This nation struggles with its inherent diversity all the time and its maddening!

 
 
 
Nerm_L
Professor Principal
3.1.9  Nerm_L  replied to  CB @3.1.8    7 months ago
Of course. Compromise is a good constraint. Especially in community/ies. We give up some individuality to form a better union with a 'sea' of others in our country. For every group that won't accept a, or several constraints, it bucks and creates friction 'zones' in that area. I know people won't like the tone of that last paragraph, but this nation has a responsibility to serve all of its citizens and not to separate and lift one group higher than another.

Yes, the group requires compromise.  But the nature of the compromise is that the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few.  The common good for the group doesn't translate to a good for all individuals in the group.  Individual diversity within the group must be subordinated to the group as a whole.  Equity becomes a measure of common good for the group as a whole and instances of individual harm within the group doesn't represent inequity.

As long as people are being "good" citizens we all have a responsibility to allow, whatever behavior and conduct, that good comes packaged. This nation struggles with its inherent diversity all the time and its maddening!

But the group becomes responsible for individual behavior and conduct within the group.  The group can claim that an injustice against an individual in the group is an injustice to the group as a whole and use the power of numbers to rectify the injustice.  However, that also means that an injustice committed by an individual in the group becomes the responsibility of the group and the group as a whole must rectify that injustice.

IMO, the nation struggles less with individual diversity than with a diversity of groups.  

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
3.1.10  seeder  CB   replied to  Nerm_L @3.1.9    7 months ago
The group can claim that an injustice against an individual in the group is an injustice to the group as a whole and use the power of numbers to rectify the injustice.  However, that also means that an injustice committed by an individual in the group becomes the responsibility of the group and the group as a whole must rectify that injustice.

The group/community does, using a court of law by jury.

IMO, the nation struggles less with individual diversity than with a diversity of groups.

Therein resides 'our' problem. We cannot 'fix' the individual while its 'next level up' is leaking vileness. It is time to talk about fixing what is broken in our communications and activities together. Starting with taking each other's points of view seriously (when factual and reasonable).

 
 
 
Nerm_L
Professor Principal
3.1.11  Nerm_L  replied to  CB @3.1.10    7 months ago
Therein resides 'our' problem. We cannot 'fix' the individual while its 'next level up' is leaking vileness. It is time to talk about fixing what is broken in our communications and activities together. Starting with taking each other's points of view seriously (when factual and reasonable).

I do not understand how communication fits into the discussion.  Is that communication as an individual or is that communication as a member of a group?  It would seem that the perception of the listener might play a role, too.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
3.1.12  seeder  CB   replied to  Nerm_L @3.1.11    7 months ago
Starting with taking each other's points of view seriously

Let's do this. And stop dividing ad nauseam. It will leave room for differently but almost certainly help heal the breaches that creates divides! 

Let's talk openly and honestly about our differences, what we feel, what hurts us, and importantly, what gives us as individuals joy.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
Professor Principal
3.1.13  Nerm_L  replied to  CB @3.1.12    7 months ago
Let's do this. And stop dividing ad nauseam. It will leave room for differently but almost certainly help heal the breaches that creates divides!  Let's talk openly and honestly about our differences, what we feel, what hurts us, and importantly, what gives us as individuals joy.

Feelings are highly subjective and individual.  And feelings are generally transitory unless they are reinforced. To honestly talk about differences based on feelings would require stepping away from the protection of the power of numbers in a group. 

Group dynamics use feelings to retain unity and cohesion by reinforcing feelings in a dishonest manner.  Feelings become part of the structure and organization of a group.  That's the 'who we are as a people' argument.  Feelings of connection, shared experiences, common beliefs, and shared understanding of right/wrong or good/bad are group dynamics and not an honest communication resulting from individual diversity.

If we choose individual diversity then we must give up the power of numbers provided by a group.  If we choose a diversity of groups based on identifiable societal distinctions then we lose individuality.  Individuals may communicate feelings honestly but groups rarely communicate feelings honestly.

So, we need to understand if the communication is by an individual or by a member of a group.  And that depends upon honest perception by the listener.  Communications isn't just speaking; communication involves listening, too.

 
 
 
Thomas
Sophomore Guide
3.1.14  Thomas  replied to  Nerm_L @3.1.7    7 months ago
The central issue is whether 'diversity' means individual diversity or a diversity of societal distinctions?  There isn't a wrong answer to that question.  But it must be understood that choosing one will establish constraints, limitations, and requirements that excludes the other.

Why? The two, individual diversity and group diversity, are different, but why does the recognition of one preclude the recognition of the other? One can (or maybe "should") be an individual and express oneself freely and still belong to a group. For example, one can be against the idea of abortion and still belong to the Democratic party or vice-versa. Belonging to a group and being an individual within that group is not only possible, but really the rule and not the exception.

...identifiable distinction and all members of the group shared that identifiable distinction; the group itself is not diverse and cannot be made diverse.

Please define "identifiable distinction".

The concept that one loses one's individuality when one "joins" a group seems like the birth of stereotype to me. Further, the idea that individuality is related to group through some zero-sum process represents thinking constrained by restrictions that, I would say, do not exist. 

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
3.1.15  seeder  CB   replied to  Nerm_L @3.1.13    7 months ago

All I am suggesting is we (even here on NT) stop dividing for the sake of division. Come together and agree about most topics of discussion, if only by choosing to compromise over contrariness. To relate this back to CRT, we can talk about history and systemic racism without the pretense that it hinders, halts, stalls, or further divides students and adults.

 
 
 
Snuffy
Masters Guide
3.1.16  Snuffy  replied to  CB @3.1.15    7 months ago

What????   Start to discuss and listen rather than preach and shout?  Accept that it's ok to not agree with someone?

How quaint, how old fashioned..      /s

It sure would be a nice change of pace..  there are way too many people who only believe they need to argue every point and must always be right regardless...   And can only denigrate any opinion that does not match up with theirs... 

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
3.1.17  seeder  CB   replied to  Snuffy @3.1.16    7 months ago

Yeah. Let's sat the political spin and agendas aside. And just 'sit on the porch' and talk. "Throw-down" if need be. I think it could be "chicken soup for the soul —NT-style.

 
 
 
Snuffy
Masters Guide
3.1.18  Snuffy  replied to  CB @3.1.17    7 months ago
political spin

Yeah,  we have too many people who's idea of political spin is too much like this...   

256

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
3.1.19  seeder  CB   replied to  Snuffy @3.1.18    7 months ago

HA!

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
3.1.20  seeder  CB   replied to  Snuffy @3.1.18    7 months ago

You know, Snuffy, the worst part above CRT is each succeeding generation is told less and sees and feels even less of inequality treatment from the majority. I don't have any idea how that works from the majority vantage point. But, and it's a big but, when conservatives try to hold back time, or take us back to different time, or make minorities recall the past by denial of it. . . it dredges up 'haunts' from the founding of this nation into the national stream of consciousness.

If we want the past to reside in its appropriate place we have to leave it 'be' and that includes accepting it for what is was with all its ugliness, horror, and insufferabilities but never by trying to pretend or delude anybody into thinking it can be revised to erase itself or mitigate itself. That kind of behavior surely 'ignites' more books on the subject matter of the past (racial divides) to be published.

It's the cool time of the evening and we are just sitting here. . .reflecting. . . What are you (wisdom) thoughts?

 
 
 
Nerm_L
Professor Principal
3.1.21  Nerm_L  replied to  Thomas @3.1.14    7 months ago
Why? The two, individual diversity and group diversity, are different, but why does the recognition of one preclude the recognition of the other? One can (or maybe "should") be an individual and express oneself freely and still belong to a group. For example, one can be against the idea of abortion and still belong to the Democratic party or vice-versa. Belonging to a group and being an individual within that group is not only possible, but really the rule and not the exception.

The grouping loses individuality.  Democrats are all Democrats.  Independents are not Democrats.  Republicans are not Democrats.  A grouping of individuals into Democrats loses individuality and diversity.  They are all Democrats and not something else.

Now you will likely point to diversity of factions within the Democratic Party.  But those factions lose individuality, too.  To be a member of a faction it is necessary to have something in common with all members of the faction.  A group defined by sameness is not diverse.  

Diversity is not defined by sameness or commonality.  And a grouping is defined by sameness or commonality.  Establishing the structure and organization of a diversity of groups loses individual variety.

Please define "identifiable distinction".

An identifiable societal distinction can be anything that is readily identifiable.  The distinctiveness of a group can be defined by race, religion, politics, economic status, social status, and even consumer preferences.  Once the group has been defined by some identifiable societal distinction, the members of the group contribute to the power of numbers for that group.  The members lose individuality and become more like statistics.

The concept that one loses one's individuality when one "joins" a group seems like the birth of stereotype to me. Further, the idea that individuality is related to group through some zero-sum process represents thinking constrained by restrictions that, I would say, do not exist. 

When someone speaks as a Democrat they are not speaking as an individual.  Their speaking represents a grouping of sameness and commonality; not individuality.  The perception of the listener plays a role, too.  The listener can perceive what is being said as representing a grouping of sameness and commonality rather than representing an individual.

To regain individual diversity the speaker and the listener must step out of their respective groups and communicate with each other as individuals representing only themselves.  Individual diversity must give up the power of numbers provided by a group.

 
 
 
Snuffy
Masters Guide
3.1.22  Snuffy  replied to  CB @3.1.20    7 months ago

CB, this is a huge discussion that would require a lot of ice tea (and bourbon) and several evenings...   

each succeeding generation is told less and sees and feels even less of inequality treatment from the majority.

This is just a guess on my part as I'm part of the majority, I'm a white hetro male.  But I think that succeeding generations are told less and see less because overall racism is getting better.  It's slow but it is getting better.  As an example, what do you think the chances are that Tulsa Race Massacre could happen again today?  I would hope that the chance is greatly less than back then, but cannot say never because we still do have racists in the public.  Racism still exists and I doubt if it will ever be completely gone but it is better than it was.  

But I also think that part of the problem is that when something like the 1619 Project comes out there is some pushback because there are some groups that want to deny it, there are some groups that want to blame everybody white and hold them responsible for something that they and their family were not involved in, but just because they are white.  I think it's a good thing to teach honest history but at the same time I think it needs to be an honest retelling and not be used to blame or denigrate anybody simply for what their ancestors may or may not have done.  I'm all for holding individuals responsible for what they have done, but not for something a great great grandparent may have done.  Unless you know the family tree you don't know for sure what that person's ancestors may have done.  This may be a little off-topic but we do hear stories about children coming home upset because they are "oppressor's".  

I'm not sure that, in this instance, we can ever just let the past be.  Racism still exists in this country and IMO will never fully go away.  It's something that we all need to work on. But we have to be careful that in combating racism we don't go overboard and cause harm to the innocent.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
3.1.23  seeder  CB   replied to  Snuffy @3.1.22    7 months ago
[W]hat do you think the chances are that Tulsa Race Massacre could happen again today?  I would hope that the chance is greatly less than back then, but cannot say never because we still do have racists in the public.  Racism still exists and I doubt if it will ever be completely gone but it is better than it was. 

I am glad you mention that massacre. The acknowledgement itself is a unexpectant step into a hearty discussion!

I am encouraged by the diversity I see taking place across our country. And Snuffy, that is all anybody really wants: Recognition and fairness-buttressed against all the issues and problems life is going to throw at the lot of us anyway.

There is a saying: when the majority sneezes, minorities (blacks specifically) catch cold;  when the majority get the flu, minorities die.

Seeing the January 6, 2021 event at the Capitol was a wake up call. Because it bore all the earmarks of a massacre looking for a place to rest. If only it could have gotten its act together. I, was on 'point' to see just how far these people would make it towards pulling off a coup in our country. Because it would signal protests and unrest from coast to coast, worse 'cells' to spot up and unscheduled violence en-mass.

Many minorities would catch 'cold' and in the 'morning after' many blacks would die from the backlash.

It's sad is it, when there are hidden folks among us that simply want to purge good people for being diverse?

I think it is very sad.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
3.1.24  seeder  CB   replied to  Snuffy @3.1.22    7 months ago
This may be a little off-topic but we do hear stories about children coming home upset because they are "oppressor's". 

Not off-topic. I mean, I can. . .see how that could happen. . .as kids try to process 'the messages they receive' -even the unspoken parts, the implications. And, it could be possible that some minority kid/s (grimacing from what he or she learns about their past history) are processing and bullying younger white youths.  But that is the growing phase in action-isn't it? I mean, it really does not become problematic until and unless it does stop. Right?

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
3.1.25  seeder  CB   replied to  Snuffy @3.1.22    7 months ago
But we have to be careful that in combating racism we don't go overboard and cause harm to the innocent.

Agreed. We need to make space for more of what I am seeing through the lens of my television set, more people of all stripes, interacting with and through each other's vision of this country. And that vision one of peace and unity and gosh darn-it (geez) 'the American Way'!

(I really mean it, despite my 'gushing' at the end there.)

 
 
 
Snuffy
Masters Guide
3.1.26  Snuffy  replied to  CB @3.1.24    7 months ago
kids try to process 'the messages they receive' -even the unspoken parts, the implications. And, it could be possible that some minority kid/s (grimacing from what he or she learns about their past history) are processing and bullying younger white youths.  But that is the growing phase in action-isn't it?

Yes, this is part of the growing phase.  But what I was talking about are the antidotal stories we have heard about teachers separating classes by race and telling the white kids they are the oppressors and minority kids they are the oppressed.  From these stories it would appear that some of this is not age appropriate at that.  Not sure what going into the particulars of slavery in that way is going to teach a five year old.  That's where it gets wrong IMO.

As I said, we need to honestly teach history but we need to be sure not to cause harm to the innocent when it's taught.  After all, the odds that a seven year old is a slave owner is a bit of a stretch, so why should they be treated as or called one.

 
 
 
Drinker of the Wry
Freshman Principal
3.1.27  Drinker of the Wry  replied to  CB @3.1.23    7 months ago
I am encouraged by the diversity I see taking place across our country.

Exactly, our country has never been stronger.

It's sad is it, when there are hidden folks among us that simply want to purge good people for being diverse?

Exactly, those hidden folks aren’t part of our diversity, they are part of our uniformity, conformity, stability?

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
3.1.28  seeder  CB   replied to  Snuffy @3.1.26    7 months ago

I would think at best it is a monstrous illustrative 'experience' of performance art-best meant for stage productions! At the worse, it has strong potential to be life-altering-on both sides. Kids will internalize the experience of being master as well as being slave. At the least, again, it will be 'powerful' for the whites and stigmatizing role play for the blacks and others "affected" students. We, did not go that far when I was a young lad in my integrated middle school!

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
3.1.29  seeder  CB   replied to  Drinker of the Wry @3.1.27    7 months ago

It would be helpful if you explain the last sentence in @3.1.27. I don't follow it at all.

 
 
 
Thomas
Sophomore Guide
3.1.30  Thomas  replied to  Nerm_L @3.1.21    7 months ago

While I agree that all Democrats are Democrats, one does not lose individuality by belonging to the group "Democrat". 

In the 2020 election, did not some of the voters cross over from their Republican group to vote for the Democratic candidate for president, while still voting for their local representatives under the Republican group? Were they not Republican?

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
3.1.31  seeder  CB   replied to  Thomas @3.1.30    7 months ago

Of course!

 
 
 
Nerm_L
Professor Principal
3.1.32  Nerm_L  replied to  Thomas @3.1.30    7 months ago
While I agree that all Democrats are Democrats, one does not lose individuality by belonging to the group "Democrat".  In the 2020 election, did not some of the voters cross over from their Republican group to vote for the Democratic candidate for president, while still voting for their local representatives under the Republican group? Were they not Republican?

Were these voters Republicans or were they Democrats?  Or were they just voters?

Did these voters form their own group or did you place them in the group?

By creating the group these voters lose individuality.  They do not define who they are; you have defined who they are by grouping them.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
3.1.33  seeder  CB   replied to  Nerm_L @3.1.32    7 months ago
By creating the group these voters lose individuality.  They do not define who they are; you have defined who they are by grouping them.

You owe us more of explanation of your point here. We should not have to pull it out of you, Nerm. People gather and form community, and people cross lines into other communities all the time. It's free passage. You need to be clear about what you are writing here, especially when you write:

"They do not define who they are"

How do you mean?

 
 
 
Nerm_L
Professor Principal
3.1.34  Nerm_L  replied to  CB @3.1.33    7 months ago
You owe us more of explanation of your point here. We should not have to pull it out of you, Nerm. People gather and form community, and people cross lines into other communities all the time. It's free passage. You need to be clear about what you are writing here, especially when you write:

"They do not define who they are"

How do you mean?

You take away a person's individuality by placing the person in a group.  That's how stereotypes work.  By placing a person in a group you do not need to think of the person as an individual.

A person can give up their individuality by placing themselves in a group; essentially using themselves as a stereotype for a group.  A person would do that to obtain power through numbers.

There are a lot of pragmatic reasons to place people into groups.  But recognize that placing the person in a group takes away some or all of the person's individuality.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
3.1.35  seeder  CB   replied to  Nerm_L @3.1.34    7 months ago
[R]ecognize that placing the person in a group takes away some or all of the person's individuality.

Because groups usually have some form of pact officially or unofficially to distinguish and pride themselves in holding. That is, the reason(s) individuals want to be a part of the group in the first place. However, taking away partially liberty or freedom is not the same as removing all liberties and freedoms. We must be clear about this important element of community and/or groups.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
4  seeder  CB     7 months ago

I have a question: Why do politicians: legislators, senators, and governors think we hire them to lead us away from reality? Isn't truth always better than error? Even when it stings or brings sadness?

 
 
 
Nerm_L
Professor Principal
4.1  Nerm_L  replied to  CB @4    7 months ago
I have a question: Why do politicians: legislators, senators, and governors think we hire them to lead us away from reality? Isn't truth always better than error? Even when it stings or brings sadness?

The power of numbers.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
4.1.1  seeder  CB   replied to  Nerm_L @4.1    7 months ago

Do tell. The power of numbers. Isn't truth more powerful to uphold? I mean truth sustains itself once properly established.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
Professor Principal
4.1.2  Nerm_L  replied to  CB @4.1.1    7 months ago
Do tell. The power of numbers. Isn't truth more powerful to uphold? I mean truth sustains itself once properly established.

It's not about truth.  It's about power.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
4.1.3  seeder  CB   replied to  Nerm_L @4.1.2    7 months ago

Which force is more meaningful to the welfare of a diverse society: Truth or Power?

 
 
 
Nerm_L
Professor Principal
4.1.4  Nerm_L  replied to  CB @4.1.3    7 months ago
Which force is more meaningful to the welfare of a diverse society: Truth or Power?

IMO in a society organized according to identifiable societal distinctions the more meaningful measure is power.  In a democratic society the majority rules and its easier to obtain the power of numbers through compelling half-truths.  Obtaining power does require dividing the majority into smaller, distinct groups.

Democracy, at least as practiced in the United States, has incentivized establishing a diversity of groups which diminishes individual diversity.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
4.1.5  seeder  CB   replied to  Nerm_L @4.1.4    7 months ago

How can lies hold a society together?! How? Did major lying and deceptions make our country 'great' and give it better cohesion among diverse people? I don't understand what you mean, exactly.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
Professor Principal
4.1.6  Nerm_L  replied to  CB @4.1.5    7 months ago
How can lies hold a society together?! How? Did major lying and deceptions make our country 'great' and give it better cohesion among diverse people? I don't understand what you mean, exactly.

They're lies from your point of view.  The listener determines what is a lie and what is a truth.  Half-truths are lies from one point of view and truths from another point of view.  Does someone tell a lie, misspeak, or make a gaffe?  That is not determined by the speaker; that is determined by the listener.

The seed article is about Critical Race Theory as it is being applied in primary education.  We've been told that CRT is an academic discipline that only addresses what is considered systemic racial biases in law, which is technically accurate, and CRT is not being taught in primary schools.  But that is a half-truth.  Something is being taught in primary schools that focuses attention on what is considered systemic racial biases in society just as the technically accurate CRT focuses attention on what is considered racial biases in law.

What is considered a systemic racial bias depends upon a point of view.  Half-truths are selected facts that reinforce that point of view while ignoring facts that do not support that point of view.  The selection of facts for half-truths are influenced by pre-existing biases imposed by group structure.  Individual experiences are twisted to conform to pre-existing biases of the group; each individual experience becomes a statistic that contributes to the power of numbers.

The CRT being taught in primary schools leads back to a discussion of constructivism in education.  

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
4.1.7  seeder  CB   replied to  Nerm_L @4.1.6    7 months ago
Something is being taught in primary schools that focuses attention on what is considered systemic racial biases in society just as the technically accurate CRT focuses attention on what is considered racial biases in law.

Can you determinate 'what' that something is that is being taught in primary schools that is triggering you? That is, if your senses are triggered and you act  on it - how are you clear when you have ended the problem? Give me something.

I can not agree with you that listeners determine what is a lie and what is true. Facts are facts. Although it is true that several points of view can, in certain situations benefit multiple perspectives and that is okay. As all is still to a favorable degree factual.

But a lie is unworkable. A lie is the opposite of truth on a spectrum scale. That is, as you cross over the lie in degrees the depth of a lie deepens accordingly. But itself is flirting with untruth all along the way.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
4.1.8  seeder  CB   replied to  Nerm_L @4.1.6    7 months ago
What is considered a systemic racial bias depends upon a point of view. 

If you are unjustifiably mistreating anybody based on factors of what they are beyond their ability to control such bias is simply put - wrong. There is no way for me to square an attitude that declares I am better than you and as a consequence it is okay in my book to stifle or end your livelihood and/or other advancements.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
Professor Principal
4.1.9  Nerm_L  replied to  CB @4.1.7    7 months ago
Can you determinate 'what' that something is that is being taught in primary schools that is triggering you? That is, if your senses are triggered and you act  on it - how are you clear when you have ended the problem? Give me something.

I'm not triggered.  But I do recognize that what is being taught is not the whole truth and nothing but the truth. 

Constructivism in education is premised upon the idea that an individual's knowledge consists of what the individual experiences and assimilates.  By controlling what the individual is allowed to experience and assimilate then theoretically it is possible to control the knowledge an individual possesses.  If the individual is only allowed to experience and assimilate half-truths then the individual can only obtain a portion of available knowledge.  The individual receives an incomplete education.

I can not agree with you that listeners determine what is a lie and what is true. Facts are facts. Although it is true that several points of view can, in certain situations benefit multiple perspectives and that is okay. As all is still to a favorable degree factual.

A set of facts carefully selected to reinforce a point of view is a half-truth.  Single facts are correct but truth requires more than single facts.

But a lie is unworkable. A lie is the opposite of truth on a spectrum scale. That is, as you cross over the lie in degrees the depth of a lie deepens accordingly. But itself is flirting with untruth all along the way.

And what is a lie?  Who determines what is a lie?  According to constructivism as applied to education, knowledge is highly subjective.  Knowledge is acquired through subjective experiences and assimilation by an individual.  

Half-truths do not refute whole truth.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
Professor Principal
4.1.10  Nerm_L  replied to  CB @4.1.8    7 months ago
If you are unjustifiably mistreating anybody based on factors of what they are beyond their ability to control such bias is simply put - wrong. There is no way for me to square an attitude that declares I am better than you and as a consequence it is okay in my book to stifle or end your livelihood and/or other advancements.

Let's test that assertion with a real world hypothetical.

A person says something that you perceive as a lie based upon what you know.  You have determined the person is a liar.  The person cannot change who they are because you have determined who they are.  And according to you, mistreating that person for being a liar is acceptable.

Now let's expand that test with another real world hypothetical (that isn't very hypothetical).

A person says something or does something that your group has determined to be racist.  Your group has determined the person is a racist.  The person cannot change who they are because your group has determined who they are.  And according to you, mistreating that person for being a racist by stifling or ending their livelihood is acceptable.

Let's go even further and look at what might be a problem with CRT.

A person is a member of a group that your group has determined to be racist.  The person is a racist by being part of a group that your group has determined to be racist.  The person cannot change who they are because they are not part of a group by choice and your group has determined the person's group is racist.  (Guilt by association.)  And according to you, it is acceptable to mistreat that person because they are part of group that your group determines is racist.

Idealist mumbo jumbo begins to fall apart in the real world.  And the rationalization of that idealism is accomplished by using half-truths.  It's acceptable to mistreat a person for who they are - because - they deserve to be mistreated for who you have determined they are.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
4.1.11  seeder  CB   replied to  Nerm_L @4.1.10    7 months ago

Nerm, it's my break time. I'm handing you the reins. . . steer well! Back soon!

 
 
 
Jack_TX
Masters Quiet
4.1.12  Jack_TX  replied to  CB @4.1.8    7 months ago
If you are unjustifiably mistreating anybody

How do you define "unjustifiably mistreating" someone?

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
4.1.13  seeder  CB   replied to  Jack_TX @4.1.12    7 months ago

I mean for it to come out as: someone being abusive . However, you may have a point and I should have stated it this way:

Poorly treating anybody based on factors of what they are beyond their ability to control is simply put - wrong .

Thank you, Jack-Tx. It was a long hard morning and an even harder day for me. I appreciate this assist. (I hope you feel good about it too! ) jrSmiley_41_smiley_image.gif

 
 
 
Jack_TX
Masters Quiet
4.1.14  Jack_TX  replied to  CB @4.1.13    7 months ago
Poorly treating anybody based on factors of what they are beyond their ability to control is simply put - wrong .

OK, how do you define "poor treatment"?

I don't mean that as some sort of combative question.  You may look at a scenario and think someone has been treated poorly while I may look at the same scenario and think they haven't.  Or vice versa.

 

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
4.1.15  seeder  CB   replied to  Jack_TX @4.1.14    7 months ago

In context of @ 4.1.8 I jrSmiley_115_smiley_image.png I could define, "poor treatment":

 A n attitude that declares I am better than you and as a consequence it is okay in my book to stifle or end your livelihood and/or other opportunities for advancement.

Maybe we can all agree, that's bad per se.

 
 
 
Jack_TX
Masters Quiet
4.1.16  Jack_TX  replied to  CB @4.1.15    7 months ago
A n attitude that declares I am better than you and as a consequence it is okay in my book to stifle or end your livelihood and/or other opportunities for advancement.

I'm not sure an attitude can constitute poor treatment on its own.  I think it's also incredibly problematic to equate attitude and accomplishments.  You can be treated poorly by people who mean well and aided by people who act out of selfish reasons.

Maybe we can all agree, that's bad per se.

Probably, I just don't think we'll agree about whether or not it applies in any given situation.

 
 
 
Jack_TX
Masters Quiet
4.2  Jack_TX  replied to  CB @4    7 months ago
I have a question: Why do politicians: legislators, senators, and governors think we hire them to lead us away from reality?
Isn't truth always better than error? Even when it stings or brings sadness?

Because contrary to whatever else we may think, the job of a sitting legislator is to win re-election.  In today's world of people who believe almost anything that confirms their bias, getting those people to acknowledge actual truth is akin to getting a 7-year-old to eat double helpings of Brussel sprouts.

So telling people what they want to hear is much better for your career than telling them the truth.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
4.2.1  seeder  CB   replied to  Jack_TX @4.2    7 months ago
Because contrary to whatever else we may think, the job of a sitting legislator is to win re-election. 

This question is pointed at the statement and not at you Jack! What about the 'spirit of 1776'? They, the founders, had big hopes for getting this 'right'?

Why do we accept and allow the 'spirit' of politics today to be so 'wrong'?

Morover: Isn't truth always better than error? Even when it stings or brings sadness?

The politics of 'right now' is 'reverting' to some monstrosity that is threatening to do us all-the whole country-a grave disservice.

 
 
 
Jack_TX
Masters Quiet
4.2.2  Jack_TX  replied to  CB @4.2.1    7 months ago
What about the 'spirit of 1776'? They, the founders, had big hopes for getting this 'right'? Why do we accept and allow the 'spirit' of politics today to be so 'wrong'?

I think the fact that we've survived this long, become the most powerful, prosperous nation on earth, and have survived some of the presidents we've had is proof enough that the founders got almost all of it right.

The system has plenty of flaws, but they're necessary to protect the rights of a free people to govern themselves.

The problems you see today are in many ways a product of vast amounts of information hitting citizens who are so poorly educated they can't begin to understand it.  As the electorate has ever increasingly moved away from the concepts of wisdom or common sense, re-election campaigns have increasingly rewarded those who can impress the ignorant and gullible.

But how would you "fix" that?  We certainly don't intend to insert an education requirement to vote, so what do we do?  Well...honestly....there isn't much.  We have to live with it, and hope the prevailing majority is reasonable and sane.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
4.2.3  seeder  CB   replied to  Jack_TX @4.2.2    7 months ago

I think this country of ours is the model for this world, because it is home for the greatest mixture of human potential alive. At nearly every juncture on the road to great nation state, we-all of us-made the decisions necessary to keep future citizens interested in bringing their talents to our 'home' and calling it their home. Our achievements lies in all of us, the rank and file laborers and the elites who steer the ship of state through the passages and paths of time. We'll great because of all of us.

Therefore, we should treat each good and honest citizen of this country no matter how limited with great fanfare, because even the smallest 'gift' or 'token' talent can help benefit the whole in unimaginable ways.

 
 
 
Snuffy
Masters Guide
4.3  Snuffy  replied to  CB @4    7 months ago
I have a question: Why do politicians: legislators, senators, and governors think we hire them to lead us away from reality? Isn't truth always better than error? Even when it stings or brings sadness?

IMO,  party politics.  It's a well known fact that fear is more effective in politics than honey and both political parties are more interested in staying in power then in bettering the lives of the citizens. So long as we continue to vote for them,  they really don't care if we have truth or a bucket of shit.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
4.3.1  seeder  CB   replied to  Snuffy @4.3    7 months ago

Truth. So we're gotten ourselves and our politicians caught up in the 'game' - at last. Even good people don't fair well in high places anymore, is that it? I can only wonder if these politicians feel themselves to be in episodic 'soap opera-driven scenes every day they are come to work. That they are never touching real people and feelings anymore, just 'performance artists' themselves and their constituents who bother to call or drop by, and everybody is lost in the maze. 

Hmmm. They need real contact from grounded people.

 
 
 
Snuffy
Masters Guide
4.3.2  Snuffy  replied to  CB @4.3.1    7 months ago
They need real contact from grounded people.

Don't hate me but...

I kind of feel that was part of what Jan 6th was supposed to be about.  Problem is the extremists did what they always do and pushed too far and screwed it all up.  We have too many stupid people in this world who cannot see tomorrow for the clouded vision they have of today and they continue to fuck up their world.  Had they just stayed outside the Capital Building and just shouted the end result probably would still have been the same with the confirmation of the election of Biden, but at least all those people would have been able to go home.  Instead there are people who's lives are upended and some are spending some quality time getting to reflect on their choices.

But who knows what potential thought processes might be changed by our elected officials had the protest remained outside and peaceful...

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
4.3.3  seeder  CB   replied to  Snuffy @4.3.2    7 months ago

Snuffy, I agree with you. However, little in the law would, could, be changed on that day. Lives lost, injuries, fractures, and resentments created would not have taken place, nevertheless. And now we have these long-running investigations. Worse of all, many foreign populations have less hope in the "American Way," now. In this one regard, the "extremists" damaged our renown the most.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
5  seeder  CB     7 months ago
On January 12, Keith Ammon, a Republican member of the New Hampshire House of Representatives, introduced a bill that would bar schools as well as organizations that have entered into a contract or subcontract with the state from endorsing "divisive concepts." Specifically, the measure would forbid "race or sex scapegoating," questioning the value of meritocracy, and suggesting that New Hampshire—or the United States—is "fundamentally racist."

Discussion question: Can anybody loving a challenge point to the period in our national history when the United States ceased to be fundamentally racist?

 
 
 
Nerm_L
Professor Principal
5.1  Nerm_L  replied to  CB @5    7 months ago
Discussion question: Can anybody loving a challenge point to the period in our national history when the United States ceased to be fundamentally racist?

The United State has only been racist from your point of view.  If you are only speaking for yourself then that point of view can be discussed honestly.  If you are speaking on behalf of an oppressed group then the discussion cannot be honest.

The facts are that the United States of individuals has not been uniformly racist.  Throughout the history of the British Colonies and the United States there have been individuals motivated by racism and there have been individuals not motivated by racism.  And most of what has been called the racist past of oppression in the United States has been motivated by many other things than racism.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
5.1.1  seeder  CB   replied to  Nerm_L @5.1    7 months ago

Let me 'chew' on that for a moment. . . .

 
 
 
Snuffy
Masters Guide
5.2  Snuffy  replied to  CB @5    7 months ago
Discussion question: Can anybody loving a challenge point to the period in our national history when the United States ceased to be fundamentally racist?

Some people would say when the Jim Crow laws were overruled by the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

Some people would say that a country itself cannot be racist, only people can be racist.  

I don't know if such a global distinction can really be made, because so much of this is very personal on how any individual looks at it.  My take on it is that the country itself is not fundamentally racist but there are individuals in power who are racist and as good politicians they are able to write laws that carefully craft words to allow their racist views traction.  When the issues are found out (the whole we have to pass it to know what's in it problem) then the laws are modified or revoked but that takes time as well.  It's a never ending issue IMO.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
5.2.1  seeder  CB   replied to  Snuffy @5.2    7 months ago

So it's "pop-up" presidents like Lincoln, Roosevelt, Truman, Kennedy, Johnson, Clinton, and Obama who significantly altered the attitudes and environment against racism in our country?I can accept that.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
6  seeder  CB     7 months ago

If a country is focused on its majority to the neglect or exclusion of perspectives from its minority/ies, is it reasonable to expect minorities will name the problem (racism being one such label)?

 
 
 
Snuffy
Masters Guide
6.1  Snuffy  replied to  CB @6    7 months ago

If a country is focused on its majority to the neglect or exclusion of perspectives from its minority/ies, is it reasonable to expect minorities will name the problem (racism being one such label)?

Not only reasonable but expected. It's even enshrined in our First Amendment   (bold is mine)

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

To use racism as an example, this problem was named and been in discussion for how many generations now.  And the problem is getting better, slowly but better.  The problem of racism is not gone, not solved and I don't believe that it will ever be fully solved.  But this world is a better place than it was fifty years ago, how much will change in the next fifty?  

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
6.1.1  seeder  CB   replied to  Snuffy @6.1    7 months ago

Racism is a disease. It does not have a right to exist. Kill the thing and immediately bury it right where it falls.

I agree wholeheartedly that we are better than fifty years ago. I see the diversity starting to breakout-through various media platforms that let me, us, peer out of our state and into the other forty nine states. When the 'most' stir and blend in well the 'least of these' our concoction can only serve itself up better.

 
 
 
Jack_TX
Masters Quiet
7  Jack_TX    7 months ago

Here is the section of the NH statute:

I. No pupil in any public school in this state shall be taught, instructed, inculcated or compelled to express belief in, or support for, any one or more of the following:

(a) That one's age, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, race, creed, color, marital status, familial status, mental or physical disability, religion or national origin is inherently superior to people of another age, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, race, creed, color, marital status, familial status, mental or physical disability, religion, or national origin;

(b) That an individual, by virtue of his or her age, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, race, creed, color, marital status, familial status, mental or physical disability, religion, or national origin, is inherently racist, sexist, or oppressive, whether consciously or unconsciously;

(c) That an individual should be discriminated against or receive adverse treatment solely or partly because of his or her age, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, race, creed, color, marital status, familial status, mental or physical disability, religion, or national origin; or

(d) That people of one age, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, race, creed, color, marital status, familial status, mental or physical disability, religion, or national origin cannot and should not attempt to treat others without regard to age, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, race, creed, color, marital status, familial status, mental or physical disability, religion, or national origin.

II. Nothing in this section shall be construed to prohibit discussing, as part of a larger course of academic instruction, the historical existence of ideas and subjects identified in this section.

III. Any person claiming to be aggrieved by a violation of this section, including the attorney general, may initiate a civil action against a school or school district in superior court for legal or equitable relief, or with the New Hampshire commission for human rights as provided in RSA 354-A:34.

IV. Violation of this section by an educator shall be considered a violation of the educator code of conduct that justifies disciplinary sanction by the state board of education.

V. For the purposes of this section, "educator" means a professional employee of any school district whose position requires certification by the state board pursuant to RSA 189:39. Administrators, specialists, and teachers are included within the definition of this term.

So I'm curious which part of this is objectionable and why?

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
7.1  seeder  CB   replied to  Jack_TX @7    7 months ago

Frankly, I see this statue as a 'shield' to not bring to the front anything about themselves in public school.  How can that proceed when school is where ideally kids test a great many ideals and concepts about the world, both good and bad. And to not have the counsel of a professional (parents are not "professionals" in this) to assist them in formulation of ideas is impractical. What say you?

I reserve opinion to state for later that this statue is impractical. I will hear others on it before I do.

 
 
 
Jack_TX
Masters Quiet
7.1.1  Jack_TX  replied to  CB @7.1    7 months ago
What say you?

I say that had this law been passed while he was alive, MLK would have wept tears of joy, and rightfully so.  Objection to basic ideas like "one race is not inherently superior to another" belongs in the 1820s, not the 2020s.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
7.1.2  seeder  CB   replied to  Jack_TX @7.1.1    7 months ago

I appreciate the law, but it is impractical to apply. For example, a student has two mommies or two daddies and a fight breaks out in the classroom over the topic,  (because children can't be scripted) what is the role of the school in restoring order in the classroom-especially if the intent is to not have fighting occur again?

I think Dr. King, difficult as it is to speak for him out of step with the times he lived, would test all things in light of what is hoped and expected to be achieved by its involvement in the lives of students and adults alike.

I want racial harmony and diversity, but I would not conceive of colorblindness as a 'purity test' to screen out undesirables.

 
 
 
Jack_TX
Masters Quiet
7.1.3  Jack_TX  replied to  CB @7.1.2    7 months ago
I appreciate the law, but it is impractical to apply. For example, a student has two mommies or two daddies and a fight breaks out in the classroom over the topic,  (because children can't be scripted) what is the role of the school in restoring order in the classroom-especially if the intent is to not have fighting occur again?

Why would that be different than a fight over any other topic?  

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
8  seeder  CB     7 months ago

I need a break to reflect and recharge. Snuffy, can you cover for me? Be yourself, gosh darn it! Back later. jrSmiley_13_smiley_image.gif

 
 

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