A group House Republican House unveiled a pair of bills Wednesday designed to stop the teaching of critical race theory in schools, federal agencies and the military, calling the increasingly popular educational model “a radical, far-Left fringe ideology.”
Rep. Dan Bishop of North Carolina led the group pushing the two bills attempting to rein in critical race theory, which teaches that White people are inherently oppressive and a period of reverse discrimination is required to right past wrongs of slavery and discrimination against Black people.
“Critical Race Theory is a divisive ideology that threatens to poison the American psyche,” Mr. Bishop said. “All who love freedom and revere the foundational principles of our Constitutional Republic have a duty to inform themselves of the origins and thought underlying this dangerous ideology and to oppose it, openly and robustly.”
The moves on Capitol Hill come as Republican-run legislatures in several states push bills to block critical race theory from being added to K-12 school curriculums.
Mr. Bishop’s two bills, which are unlikely to find traction in the Democratic-run Congress, would codify an executive order by former President Trump that blocked critical race theory workshops and seminars for federal workers.
President Biden lifted the ban with an executive order upon taking office in January.
The “Stop CRT Act” would ban federal funding that promotes or teaches critical race theory.
The “Combatting Racist Training in the Military Act” prohibits the training at the Pentagon. A companion bill was introduced by Sen. Tom Cotton, Arkansas Republican.
Critical race theory is rapidly spreading through schools and workplaces across the country.
“Critical Race Theory espouses that America is an irredeemably racist society in its origins and in its present condition,” Mr. Bishop said. “The roots of this ideology are unmistakable. Just as Karl Marx advocated a social critical ethic of societal classicism, oppressor vs. oppressed, this is neo-Marxist ideology. Cultural Marxism, masquerading as history and designed to mislead.”
Supporters of the educational model say it exposes pupils to how White supremacist thinking framed the American experiment. They say schools and workplaces should instill the knowledge of how privilege that adheres to people regardless of their thoughts and actions influences life in everyday America, and, in so doing, shed light on the disadvantages Blacks in particular suffer.
In practice, critics say, the theory results in leftist indoctrination.
“According to the radical, far-left ideology known as ‘critical race theory’ our country is flawed, hopeless and evil,” said Rep. Ted Budd, North Carolina Republican. “Now, we’re standing here today because corporate America, big tech and Hollywood are pushing critical race theory in institutions across the country.”
The ideology has proved especially polarizing in education. Idaho has passed a law banning critical race theory in its K-12 schools, and similar bills have been sent to the governors of Kansas and Tennessee. Florida Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis has banned critical race theory instruction there through an executive order.
The Congress members sponsoring the legislation drew a contrast between the bland way critical race theory proponents describe their ideology as a more “inclusive” type of training and the many examples of how it works in practice, which has spawned lawsuits and furious pushback from parents in many states.
The tribal nature of critical race theory that divides students and workers into deplorable or noble pools based on immutable characteristics like skin color and sexual preference has sparked several lawsuits, and more than a dozen state legislatures are grappling with bills that would ban the process critics say is racist and divisive.
At the press conference to announce the bills were supporters including Russ Vought, former head of the Office of Management and Budget and president of Citizens for Renewing America, a non-profit fighting against critical race theory.
Listed as sponsors of the legislation were Republican Reps. Chip Roy of Texas, Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia, Lauren Boebert of Colorado, Andy Biggs of Arizona and Ralph Norman of South Carolina.
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