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Mom in Va. who lived through Cultural Revolution addresses school board regarding Critical Race Theory


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5 hours ago, Plum said:

I’m still struggling to see why it’s so important to force kids to see color and separate themselves out by power and privilege.

I think the answer is that there is a silent "white" in front of "kids" in your sentence.  BIPOC kids see color all the time, and are taught from a young age how to navigate the world to try to stay safe.  White kids don't have to see color to be safe from racially-based violence.   

Separating is not my preferred strategy.  Presenting concrete, workable ways out of the current (400 + years) situation should be the goal while helping all kids see where they are within the system only as a means to ending it.  Leaving kids with just the present facts is to leave them in despair. 

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16 hours ago, Sneezyone said:

Florida Governor signs yet another law intended to chill speech in education, this time targeting colleges and universities. It’s hard not to see this as an attempt to threaten state-funded HBCUs like FAMU. This was sent to me by a mom of teens in FL who was recommending against FL schools. https://www.businessinsider.com/desantis-signs-law-to-punish-student-indoctrination-at-florida-universities-2021-6?fbclid=IwAR16CV4nNIKpzJJwMVeZJtK_JeGh3wTdF50A0RmBS4ACjjhp22Ca1wL1ss8

I'd be interested in seeing statements from FAMU (and any other state HBCUs) on this. I follow the local HBCU awareness group, but so far haven't seen anything. 

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2 hours ago, Harpymom said:

I think the answer is that there is a silent "white" in front of "kids" in your sentence.  BIPOC kids see color all the time, and are taught from a young age how to navigate the world to try to stay safe.  White kids don't have to see color to be safe from racially-based violence.   

Separating is not my preferred strategy.  Presenting concrete, workable ways out of the current (400 + years) situation should be the goal while helping all kids see where they are within the system only as a means to ending it.  Leaving kids with just the present facts is to leave them in despair. 

When L was in preschool, the teacher read a cute little book about Martin Luther King. That afternoon in the car, I got asked "Did you know Darryl and Faith are Black?". I realized, then, that I'd missed something. Because having taught Head Start, I knew that by age 3, my Black students were very, very aware of what being Black meant. And that was a lesson all my attempts to have friends of multiple races and pick toys and media that did not default to White being normal had missed. I had missed the lesson that, as a white kid, you need to be ready to support your BIPOC friends and classmates when, not if, inequity happens. Because too often, it's the black kid, even as early as preschool, who gets blamed or treated more severely, and being able to say "no, ma'am/sir, this is what I saw" to a teacher or playground monitor (or down the roadm to a police officer) might save someone undeserved pain and suffering. That when Faith's mom has different rules, it's for a good reason, and that goes double for Darryl's mom, because Darryl is even more likely to be treated badly than Faith is.

 

 

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34 minutes ago, Dmmetler said:

I'd be interested in seeing statements from FAMU (and any other state HBCUs) on this. I follow the local HBCU awareness group, but so far haven't seen anything. 

Same. I think the kids are smart enough to see this for what it is. We are touring schools with DD right now and most of the campuses are dead so it may take a minute to hear a response but, as a prospective parent, I want to know how much meddling state officials intend to do and how the school plans to respond. I’m not sending my kid there to fight. She’s going to an HBCU because she doesn’t want to fight anymore. It will absolutely affect our decision-making.

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40 minutes ago, Sneezyone said:

Same. I think the kids are smart enough to see this for what it is. We are touring schools with DD right now and most of the campuses are dead so it may take a minute to hear a response but, as a prospective parent, I want to know how much meddling state officials intend to do and how the school plans to respond. I’m not sending my kid there to fight. She’s going to an HBCU because she doesn’t want to fight anymore. It will absolutely affect our decision-making.

I think a lot of kids are tired of fighting. I'm sure that's part of the reason why Agnes Scott appealed so much. 

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re "forcing" kids to "see color"

9 hours ago, Plum said:

...I’m still struggling to see why it’s so important to force kids to see color and separate themselves out by power and privilege. My best friend in 2nd grade was black. I didn’t care what color she was. She liked Barbie and had a townhouse. I played at her house all the time. We lived in similar houses in the same neighborhood. I didn’t see her as different or better or worse. That thought never entered my mind. I don’t see how this new anti-bias antiracist training is better than what we had...

As others have already said more eloquently and with more lived experience than I, a very great % of POC have race thrust upon them whether they like it or not. 

School aged *white kids* may never once have thought about race. The vast majority of *black kids* have already gotten the memo by the time they arrive.

1 hour ago, Dmmetler said:

When L was in preschool, the teacher read a cute little book about Martin Luther King. That afternoon in the car, I got asked "Did you know Darryl and Faith are Black?". I realized, then, that I'd missed something. Because having taught Head Start, I knew that by age 3, my Black students were very, very aware of what being Black meant. And that was a lesson all my attempts to have friends of multiple races and pick toys and media that did not default to White being normal had missed. I had missed the lesson that, as a white kid, you need to be ready to support your BIPOC friends and classmates when, not if, inequity happens. Because too often, it's the black kid, even as early as preschool, who gets blamed or treated more severely, and being able to say "no, ma'am/sir, this is what I saw" to a teacher or playground monitor (or down the roadm to a police officer) might save someone undeserved pain and suffering. That when Faith's mom has different rules, it's for a good reason, and that goes double for Darryl's mom, because Darryl is even more likely to be treated badly than Faith is.

 

re I Have a Dream

9 hours ago, Plum said:

...Whatever happened to the ideal of Star Trek where race, sex, difference didn’t matter? Isn’t that the ideal? A future where we can all see past the outside and appreciate what’s inside...

The invocation of the ideal did not magically catapult us into a place where that ideal was already met. 

Certainly at the time of MLK's speech he categorically did NOT see our society as having met that standard.

It's obviously impossible to know, but if we imagine him alive today, scanning law enforcement/ judicial / sentencing / incarceration patterns, or the re-segregation of schools via different structures like charters and vouchers, or districting maps, or the recent wave of state laws to restrict voter access immediately following record black turnout, or the Confederate flags and N-word hurling towards Capitol Police on Jaunary 6... well. Do we believe MLK would judge our society today as having arrived at that shimmering place where all the little children are solely judged by the content of their respective characters?

 

Because if we *haven't* arrived at that shimmering ideal place, the insistence on "colorblind" has a weird, doubtless unintended, effect: If you don't even notice race, you don't see racism.

That isn't an option for folks on the other side of the telescope. 

Among the several points that Milley makes in that short clip are the ideas that

  • the US military draws on the *whole* of the American population, and its leadership needs to understand the lived experience of *all* its members in order to lead effectively; and
  • part of that is the historical legacy from 3/5 to antebellum to Civil War to Civil Rights; and
  • part of that is also the current "white rage" (his words) that propelled the 1/6 assault on legislators and democracy itself

Those dynamics, the (Trump-appointed) Chairman of the JCS is saying, underpin our national security. They cannot be waved away by invoking Martin's Big Dream.

 

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There’s a certain amount of chicken/egg happening here too, as if asking students to share their perceptions of race/racism CREATES those perceptions rather than reflecting them. By the time I was in fifth grade, I was reading James Baldwin and my mom’s law books on the sly to try to make sense of what I was seeing and feeling and hearing. No one ever asked me what I thought; it didn’t mean that I hadn’t already formed thoughts.

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10 hours ago, Plum said:

 

5th grade social studies class - it sound like they spent their whole year on this  

 

A few comments about the linked video. First, someone mentioned on this thread (sorry - don't remember who that was) that elementary school kids are going to forget the content they are taught. But you seem to be criticizing the school for spending a year on anti-racism. It seems like the school can't win. 

I think that kind of constant criticism of the schools is part of the problem here. No matter what they do, some parent will complain. And so will the contrarians. What are we supposed do? Nothing. This is why so much of this debate (I don't mean on this forum - I mean in general) strikes me as being in bad faith. 

Second, these kids were already separating based on race with no prompting from the teacher. (Granted, we have only snippets of the conversation.) My daughter is the same age as these kids and I don't need to tell her that race exists. It's a cliche that kids notice everything and that's probably overstating it but kids do notice. 

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On 6/13/2021 at 7:06 PM, Sneezyone said:

There is nothing inherently problematic with the word privilege. It’s a privilege for me to parent the children I have, a privilege to be able to pay my bills every month without worry, a privilege to have been home with them, largely isolated, for the last 15 months. I am privileged in many ways. The demonization of the word used in this context is something that can, in fact, be rejected. Seeing privilege as a personal attack is also a choice.

Still reading this thread. It’s fascinating,  but this comment made me scratch my head. I wouldn’t consider any of these you listed as privilege. You know what I would consider a privilege?  Being a child of a famous politician and as a result taking up spots of qualified people while you yourself aren’t qualified (a very real thing that happened to one of my kids). 

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27 minutes ago, Roadrunner said:

Still reading this thread. It’s fascinating,  but this comment made me scratch my head. I wouldn’t consider any of these you listed as privilege. You know what I would consider a privilege?  Being a child of a famous politician and as a result taking up spots of qualified people while you yourself aren’t qualified (a very real thing that happened to one of my kids). 

DH and I spent tens of thousands of dollars to have each of our children and, in the end, someone entrusted us with their child. I consider it a privilege that we had benefits to help offset those costs and that we were even given the opportunity. To me, it’s a privilege to be able to conceive and birth your own independently. I didn’t do anything to be able to stay home with my kids. My DH made a series of career moves that made that possible. Am I supposed to disagree that wealth/power confers unearned privilege on some? I don’t.

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4 minutes ago, Sneezyone said:

DH and I spent tens of thousands of dollars to have each of our children. I consider it a privilege that we had benefits to help offset those costs. I didn’t do anything to be able to stay home with my kids. My DH made a series of career moves that made that possible. Am I supposed to disagree that wealth/power confers unearned privilege on some? I don’t.

We made a ton of sacrifices here as well. And nothing about my situation I consider a privilege. In fact I think I have irreversibly damaged my life because of those decisions. 

What I am saying is language doesn’t mean the same thing to all of us. Take this word - privilege. I would never use it in your context. So you and I can look at the same thing and have an op positive take on it. wonder how often people even agree on those definitions, have same understanding of what we are talking about. Privilege to me is very much an unearned thing that gives you a massive advantage. I have seen it happen in life sadly. 
So I could understand how being white, especially a good looking and wealthy one can be a privilege, but would never put other things in that category. 

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2 minutes ago, Roadrunner said:

We made a ton of sacrifices here as well. And nothing about my situation I consider a privilege. In fact I think I have irreversibly damaged my life because of those decisions. 

What I am saying is language doesn’t mean the same thing to all of us. Take this word - privilege. I would never use it in your context. So you and I can look at the same thing and have an op positive take on it. wonder how often people even agree on those definitions, have same understanding of what we are talking about. Privilege to me is very much an unearned thing that gives you a massive advantage. I have seen it happen in life sadly. 
So I could understand how being white, especially a good looking and wealthy one can be a privilege, but would never put other things in that category. 

Well, birthing your own offspring saves thousands of dollars and a lot of heartache so, yeah, that’s a privilege. The thing about privilege is that it’s easy to see others’ and sometimes very hard to see our own.

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I agree with @Roadrunner that we do bring different understanding of what the word itself means, which makes dialogue harder.

But there's also much to the idea that unearned gifts are easier to see at a distance, than up close:

12 minutes ago, Sneezyone said:

Well, birthing your own offspring saves thousands of dollars and a lot of heartache so, yeah, that’s a privilege. The thing about privilege is that it’s easy to see others’ and sometimes very hard to see our own.

It's pretty natural, for anyone who's worked hard and/or made choices that entailed tradeoffs and/or faced adversity and struggle, to attribute the good parts [solely] to those efforts and choices. 

And to discount the role that random chance or good fortune -- being born to the rights of citizenship, being born to parents who loved and cared, having good health/ fertility, NOT having parents or siblings or spouse prematurely snatched to cancer or accident, etc... plays.

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About young kids seeing color, the first time it ever came up with my kids was when an AA girl in their preschool told them I couldn't be their mom because I was white.

I'm not sure what to think about that, but it's not for me to say what other people teach their kids at home.

The argument that black kids are more likely to face violence from whites vs the opposite is just not true.  It may be what they believe, but the numbers don't support this.  By that logic, should white people teach their kids to see color because someday a POC might harm them?  I would never do that.  You can say that's my "privilege" if you want to.

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7 hours ago, Dmmetler said:

I think a lot of kids are tired of fighting. I'm sure that's part of the reason why Agnes Scott appealed so much. 

BTW- we threw Agnes Scott into our tour lineup based on your review and DD really liked it.

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11 hours ago, Harpymom said:

I think the answer is that there is a silent "white" in front of "kids" in your sentence.  BIPOC kids see color all the time, and are taught from a young age how to navigate the world to try to stay safe.  White kids don't have to see color to be safe from racially-based violence.   

Separating is not my preferred strategy.  Presenting concrete, workable ways out of the current (400 + years) situation should be the goal while helping all kids see where they are within the system only as a means to ending it.  Leaving kids with just the present facts is to leave them in despair. 

Kids (K-8) can do nothing to end the system. 

And what does 'end the system' mean? In specific, material terms?

 

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16 hours ago, Plum said:

I also think it’s important that we are open-minded and widely read. The Military Academy is a University. (Not K-12) He mentions he reads Mao and Marx, though it’s not clear if it is on his own time or as required reading. I think it’s important for military personnel to understand our history, our own government and politic as well as others so they fully understand what they are fighting for. However, I should point out again that military university is not K-12. Once you are old enough to be attending a military university, you are old enough to make up your own mind. Perhaps you’ve even had some life experiences so you can read Ibram X Kendi with context. As an adult, you can read Marx and Mao with background information that kids just don’t have.

 

I’m still struggling to see why it’s so important to force kids to see color and separate themselves out by power and privilege. My best friend in 2nd grade was black. I didn’t care what color she was. She liked Barbie and had a townhouse. I played at her house all the time. We lived in similar houses in the same neighborhood. I didn’t see her as different or better or worse. That thought never entered my mind. I don’t see how this new anti-bias antiracist training is better than what we had. 

Whatever happened to the ideal of Star Trek where race, sex, difference didn’t matter? Isn’t that the ideal? A future where we can all see past the outside and appreciate what’s inside.

 

5th grade social studies class - it sound like they spent their whole year on this  

 

It would be very interesting if your friend could participate in this discussion.  It's not remotely unusual that YOU saw things a being colorless and equal.  It's not unusual that YOU were made to feel comfortable.  The whole problem is getting people who are used to comfort to tolerate even a moment of discomfort.  There are whole communities that care more about their family's comfort than they do about injustices that their neighbors may be experiencing.  The sad thing is that nobody is asking anyone to experience these injustices for themselves.  They just want to have the conversation so that everyone understands that racism is real and affecting people's lives today.  A conversation is too much to ask.  Mild discomfort is too much to ask.  

 

4 hours ago, SKL said:

About young kids seeing color, the first time it ever came up with my kids was when an AA girl in their preschool told them I couldn't be their mom because I was white.

I'm not sure what to think about that, but it's not for me to say what other people teach their kids at home.

The argument that black kids are more likely to face violence from whites vs the opposite is just not true.  It may be what they believe, but the numbers don't support this.  By that logic, should white people teach their kids to see color because someday a POC might harm them?  I would never do that.  You can say that's my "privilege" if you want to.

Most people face violence from people they know who are close to them.  Violence from strangers isn't the most pressing threat.  This isn't about crime statistics sorted by race.  This is about violence and discrimination from police, school systems, financial institutions, medical facilities, and government entities that should be fair to everyone.  I'm not surprised that as more and more people finally catch on to the statistically undeniable unfairness of it all that there is a strong backlash from those benefiting from this unfairness.  Why else would entire communities want to ban even the discussion of race in schools?  It's just weird and dark and it feels like moving backwards.

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16 minutes ago, KungFuPanda said:

 

It would be very interesting if your friend could participate in this discussion.  It's not remotely unusual that YOU saw things a being colorless and equal.  It's not unusual that YOU were made to feel comfortable.  The whole problem is getting people who are used to comfort to tolerate even a moment of discomfort.  There are whole communities that care more about their family's comfort than they do about injustices that their neighbors may be experiencing.  The sad thing is that nobody is asking anyone to experience these injustices for themselves.  They just want to have the conversation so that everyone understands that racism is real and affecting people's lives today.  A conversation is too much to ask.  Mild discomfort is too much to ask.  

 

Most people face violence from people they know who are close to them.  Violence from strangers isn't the most pressing threat.  This isn't about crime statistics sorted by race.  This is about violence and discrimination from police, school systems, financial institutions, medical facilities, and government entities that should be fair to everyone.  I'm not surprised that as more and more people finally catch on to the statistically undeniable unfairness of it all that there is a strong backlash from those benefiting from this unfairness.  Why else would entire communities want to ban even the discussion of race in schools?  It's just weird and dark and it feels like moving backwards.

That’s not my reading of the situation.

race can and will be discussed, but not through the lens of CRT.

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5 hours ago, SKL said:

About young kids seeing color, the first time it ever came up with my kids was when an AA girl in their preschool told them I couldn't be their mom because I was white.

I'm not sure what to think about that, but it's not for me to say what other people teach their kids at home.

The argument that black kids are more likely to face violence from whites vs the opposite is just not true.  It may be what they believe, but the numbers don't support this.  By that logic, should white people teach their kids to see color because someday a POC might harm them?  I would never do that.  You can say that's my "privilege" if you want to.

That probably comes from the same place as the elementary students who told my child they couldn’t possibly be adopted because they are brown like DH and I.

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31 minutes ago, Melissa Louise said:

Kids (K-8) can do nothing to end the system. 

I agree, I'm talking about educators, school admins, curriculum directors, gatekeepers.

 

32 minutes ago, Melissa Louise said:

And what does 'end the system' mean? In specific, material terms?

It took us 400 years to get here, it will take a while to get out.  An equitable society will need to encompass both ending personal bigotry and structural, generational oppression.  Reparations, a re-working of the economy away from capitalism, ending for-profit health care, replacing the current prison system are specifics.

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Does anyone remember Free Willy, the movie, and the big earth day push in the 80s? I remember my sister coming home, absolutely RABID, about the need to cut the plastic around soda cans and reduce plastic bag use. Funny how exposure to those things sticks with you sometimes. We still reuse plastic bags and cut the plastic on plastic bottle six packs, etc. As a big sister, I thought she was nuts. You can’t fix a systemic problem that you can’t or won’t see and sometimes the lessons of youth really DO make a difference in how we approach problems as adults.

ETA: I think the people advancing these CRT bans know that exposing kids to all kinds of unpleasantries DOES make a difference in how the kids see and approach problems later. They know that giving kids something tangible to do, like writing letters and lobbying legislatures also makes a difference. Thus, the proponents of these laws hope to break the chain between youth awareness and adult activism.

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7 hours ago, Sneezyone said:

Well, birthing your own offspring saves thousands of dollars and a lot of heartache so, yeah, that’s a privilege. The thing about privilege is that it’s easy to see others’ and sometimes very hard to see our own.

Being able to give birth is a privilege? Now I guess one can have a very loose definition of the word,  but in my world privilege implies “right held as a prerogative of status or rank, and exercised to the exclusion or detriment of others.” 

so in my mind, there is a flip side to privilege - discrimination. 
I would say if my kid can gain advantage because of his status as a child of a famous person, or if he can buy a house because the seller picks him on the basis of his race, or he gains any advantage because he belongs to a certain racial and/or ethnic class, that’s privilege. The flip side being my privilege is a discrimination to another human. 

 

If we all hold such different understanding of the word that is at the heart of this debate, how can we even debate? 

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1 hour ago, Harpymom said:

I agree, I'm talking about educators, school admins, curriculum directors, gatekeepers.

 

It took us 400 years to get here, it will take a while to get out.  An equitable society will need to encompass both ending personal bigotry and structural, generational oppression.  Reparations, a re-working of the economy away from capitalism, ending for-profit health care, replacing the current prison system are specifics.

So, the idea is that a general infusing of the curriculum with racial justice studies will lead to...a generation both in favour of the above and with the power to enact the above? 

Because schools themselves, as institutions, cannot enact these outcomes. 

So, if the idea is to influence students in favour of particular political and ideological policies and positions, I can see why people are objecting, regardless of whether they are views I do or don't support. 

I think K-8 education is about skills, not overthrowing capitalism ( and I'm a social democrat). 

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1 hour ago, Roadrunner said:

Being able to give birth is a privilege? Now I guess one can have a very loose definition of the word,  but in my world privilege implies “right held as a prerogative of status or rank, and exercised to the exclusion or detriment of others.” 

so in my mind, there is a flip side to privilege - discrimination. 
I would say if my kid can gain advantage because of his status as a child of a famous person, or if he can buy a house because the seller picks him on the basis of his race, or he gains any advantage because he belongs to a certain racial and/or ethnic class, that’s privilege. The flip side being my privilege is a discrimination to another human. 

 

If we all hold such different understanding of the word that is at the heart of this debate, how can we even debate? 

Your definition includes the word exclusion. Does your definition of that differ from mine? Exclusion happens both intentionally and unintentionally. Being fertile is a status. It’s exercise to the exclusion of others is a privilege. Even if we don’t agree on that, yes, it could be seen as discriminatory that adults who have suboptimal fertility do not receive medical coverage to restore or preserve their reproductive health where pregnancy is fully covered for all. Privilege and discrimination aren’t opposites.

 

1 hour ago, Melissa Louise said:

So, the idea is that a general infusing of the curriculum with racial justice studies will lead to...a generation both in favour of the above and with the power to enact the above? 

Because schools themselves, as institutions, cannot enact these outcomes. 

So, if the idea is to influence students in favour of particular political and ideological policies and positions, I can see why people are objecting, regardless of whether they are views I do or don't support. 

I think K-8 education is about skills, not overthrowing capitalism ( and I'm a social democrat). 

No, the idea is to TELL THE TRUTH about the origins of our current state. That truth necessitates some evaluation of the impact, past and present, of racism. That understanding is likely to lead more individuals to support changes in how and why we do the things we do and have the laws we have. It’s not a guarantee. It’s just a consequence of having more/better information about our shared story. That’s not overthrow either. It’s growth. Evolution.

ETA: CRT, as currently defined on the US right, is any assertion that current outcomes/conditions are the result of racist intentions or acts from the past. CRT includes any assertion that wealth, race, or other immutable characteristic confers unearned benefits. CRT is anything even tangentially related to history that suggests America is (not just was) flawed and that living people have been harmed by those flaws. The ‘patriotism’ instructional mandates (literally, there are forced speech laws that require teachers to promote ‘patriotism’ and reveal the ‘evils’ of other governing models) are an outgrowth. The irony is that the people mandating a simplistic, one-dimensional (always up!) ‘patriotic’ education could really benefit from understanding the much more nuanced and complicated patriotism of indigenous and other minority groups who have fought, died, and bled for this country without receiving the benefits, honors, and respect they were/are owed. THAT is true patriotism.

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2 minutes ago, Sneezyone said:

Your definition includes the word, exclusion. Does your definition of that differ from mine? Privilege and discrimination aren’t opposites.

 

No, the idea is to TELL THE TRUTH about the origins of our current state. That truth necessitates some evaluation of the impact past, and present, of racism. That understanding is likely to lead more individuals to support changes in how and why we do the things we do and have the laws we have. That’s not overthrow. It’s growth. Evolution.

To me they go hand in hand. So yes, we see this differently. 

This board had me watching videos on Kosher cooking earlier this week and now this privilege business 🙂 

Still on page 10 of this thread. 

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3 hours ago, pinball said:

That’s not my reading of the situation.

race can and will be discussed, but not through the lens of CRT.

Isn't that a bit like saying you can teach kids about the Boston Tea Party but you can't mention the part about the Tea Act or say "Taxation Without Representation" because that makes it seem like the government is complicit and that's too inflammatory? 

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58 minutes ago, Plum said:

How can schools be the ones to approach this when they have repeatedly and demonstrably failed their minority students? The abysmal test scores, the school to prison pipeline, the difference in punishment, and the schools that are falling apart to start. If we are to see an end to this, shouldn't they start there? 

This video on Amanpour and Company interviewing Black activist parents about the 500% increase in homeschooling was a really good conversation about what is going on there. They discussed why POC are choosing to keep their kids home. They don't think schools are designed for their kids. Schools set them up to fail. They don't feel supported at all. They think their kids are targeted. Public education has devastated generations of their kids. They wanted to take the power over their children's education because they realized they have that power. These women are still activists. They have become education refugees because they believe the system has failed their kids. 

 

 

I'd like to introduce them to John Taylor Gatto if they haven't already read him. 

An entire year on anti-racist training at a school for minorities in Brooklyn seems excessive. Like you pointed out, they already live this. Their test scores are not that great. Criticism goes both ways though. Teachers don't like it when parents are overly involved just as much as they don't like absentee parents. This pandemic has forced parents to have some skin in the game. They have had to facilitate, advocate, educate their kids more than any parent group in decades. That's going to naturally change the dynamic. Parents want to be able to entrust their children to the schools and they are not feeling that right now. 

First off, you don’t know it was an entire year of explicit anti-racist teaching. As you said earlier ‘it sounds like’ …to YOU.  That’s your own speculation. Second of all, black parents are and have been homeschooling in increasing numbers to protect their kids from racist SYSTEMS that you object to students learning about or discussing in school. CRT bans in teacher education and training explicitly prohibit the consideration of disparate treatment and outcomes so teachers can remain ignorant of the ways in which they criminalize and pathologize differences.

What these parents are complaining about are paternalistic attitudes that presume violence, stupidity, and parental apathy. It’s the same paternalism you’re using to presume that these complaints mean black parents haven’t already had skin in the game and/or don’t value the CRT lens. Oh, contraire, they’re largely using CRT at home to inform and empower their students, to build them up with stories about black success and white efforts to thwart it, how the country is run as one big game built for others, what the rules are, and how they can play to win. All of that is in ADDITION to reading, writing, and arithmetic. This isn’t evidence of the drawbacks of CRT. It’s evidence of the way that lens fortifies students against the onslaught of daily life and the ongoing ignorance and blindness of a primarily white teacher corps that doesn’t understand the kids they teach or the families they come from.

The curriculum and study choices black homeschooling parents make are often focused on affirmation and support, encouragement, dignity, history (the parts that don’t show the US in the best light), and triumph over adversity. That focus is exactly what is being banned. Add in the forced ‘patriotism’ crap and there will be even more of an exodus.

And lest anyone think I’m saying this to be mean or just for shits and giggles…

https://www.google.com/amp/s/theconversation.com/amp/black-americans-homeschool-for-different-reasons-than-whites-137554

https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.newyorker.com/magazine/2021/06/21/the-rise-of-black-homeschooling/amp

https://www.google.com/amp/s/amp.theatlantic.com/amp/article/385543/

https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.pbs.org/newshour/amp/show/black-families-increasingly-choose-to-homeschool-kids

More ignorance on the part of teachers and administrators is sure to help. Yep. Surely.

Black parents homeschool to protect their kids from racism. To strengthen them before subjecting them to it, not to ignore it, but to confront it fully armed with facts. Using this increase to suggest that we should double down on the ignorance that got us to this point is really rich.

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21 minutes ago, Plum said:

How can schools be the ones to approach this when they have repeatedly and demonstrably failed their minority students? The abysmal test scores, the school to prison pipeline, the difference in punishment, and the schools that are falling apart to start. If we are to see an end to this, shouldn't they start there? 

This video on Amanpour and Company interviewing Black activist parents about the 500% increase in homeschooling was a really good conversation about what is going on there. They discussed why POC are choosing to keep their kids home. They don't think schools are designed for their kids. Schools set them up to fail. They don't feel supported at all. They think their kids are targeted. Public education has devastated generations of their kids. They wanted to take the power over their children's education because they realized they have that power. These women are still activists. They have become education refugees because they believe the system has failed their kids. 

 

 

I'd like to introduce them to John Taylor Gatto if they haven't already read him. 

An entire year on anti-racist training at a school for minorities in Brooklyn seems excessive. Like you pointed out, they already live this. Their test scores are not that great. Criticism goes both ways though. Teachers don't like it when parents are overly involved just as much as they don't like absentee parents. This pandemic has forced parents to have some skin in the game. They have had to facilitate, advocate, educate their kids more than any parent group in decades. That's going to naturally change the dynamic. Parents want to be able to entrust their children to the schools and they are not feeling that right now. 

Do you actually believe that parents did not have "skin in the game" when they sent their kids to school? Or that they didn't have to facilitate, advocate or educate their kids before the pandemic? 

It seems to me that you're doing exactly what I discussed in my post. You keep looking for reasons, any reason, to disagree. Nothing these schools do will ever be sufficient. You keep moving the goalposts. 

You say we should focus on the schools' other failings but here's what's pretty obvious to me. If the schools focused on those things, you wouldn't approve of it either. Some parent would gripe about it in school board meeting and Fox would focus on it. 

And what's your suggestion for focusing on those issues? Besides homeschooling which isn't an option for most families. 

Do you advocate for increasing funding for schools? Are you willing to pay more taxes so that schools aren't falling apart? 

And how do address the school to prison pipeline without discussing systemic racism? Why are African American students subjected to more discipline than white students? How do you address that without acknowledging racism? 

Why do those parents think the schools aren't designed for them and that they are set up to fail their kids? Maybe it's because whenever we discuss racism, white people lose their minds? Maybe those parents would feel better about their schools if the schools addressed systemic racism? 

 

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37 minutes ago, Plum said:

How can schools be the ones to approach this when they have repeatedly and demonstrably failed their minority students? The abysmal test scores, the school to prison pipeline, the difference in punishment, and the schools that are falling apart to start. If we are to see an end to this, shouldn't they start there? 

Right. Honestly, I would think that getting these kids the education they deserve ought to be the surest way to promote true equality. 

(And lest anyone is confused, I emphatically disagree with the bans. But I'm not sure requiring school time on these subjects is worthwhile, either.) 

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1 hour ago, Not_a_Number said:

Right. Honestly, I would think that getting these kids the education they deserve ought to be the surest way to promote true equality. 

(And lest anyone is confused, I emphatically disagree with the bans. But I'm not sure requiring school time on these subjects is worthwhile, either.) 

You’re not sure whether class time should include it but you’re not willing to listen to or consider the preferences of the parents whose children are most affected by racism? They’re literally saying, in each of the articles linked, that they want and do MORE with history and racial matters, not less. Again, paternalism. They must not know what works. 

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37 minutes ago, Plum said:

I really don’t want to have to watch the whole video again but I remember this course took the place of social studies and she mentions doing the work all year. 

I didn’t need to read those articles. I was already aware of the increase before the pandemic. I do actually follow homeschool news.  

I am a homeschooler through and through. Of course I’m going to say the answer to this is to homeschool. I’m not going to apologize for that. I think it’s great that they are taking their kids education into their own hands.  

I’m still reading up and watching debates about this. I’m not for the bans as I’ve said many many times. I’m for free speech. I’m tired of defending myself for questioning this. That doesn’t make me a racist. 

Are you telling me that you didn’t see a huge increase in PTA groups? Parents  constantly complaining about their kids virtual school? How terrible they were at “homeschooling”? How the virtual school schedules made no sense whatsoever? And they couldn’t wait to get their kid back into school? I had a kid in so fromK-4. There are severely uninvolved parents who had no skin in the game. Never showed up to parent teacher, never volunteered, never made sure their kid turned in homework, never had their kid read a book, etc. 

I don’t claim to have the answers. I do have questions. 

And you all keep moving the goal post. You don’t know the definition of CRT. They aren’t teaching it in schools. Prove it. Well that’s not it and if it is so what. That’s anti-bias training. Or antiracist training. Well that’s just a clunky attempt at teaching it. If you don’t want them teaching CRT in K-8 or K-12 you must not want any discussion of racism at all. How can we teach it if we can’t talk about it? You are too white and privileged to understand. It’s all blown out of proportion. You’re falling for Fox News talking points. 

I’m actually a pretty open-minded person. I think I’ve been fair but challenging on this.  

Here’s what I’d approve of.

  • A dialogue with parents to decide what will be in their history and classes, not decisions handed down or hidden. 
  • Give parents the choice to opt out of topics, just as they would books.
  • Most school districts have to provide a copy of their school curriculum that’s used or the scope and sequence, something that informs the parents what to expect.
  • A thorough review of history and civics curriculum with carefully chosen topics to create a well-rounded well-informed student. 
  • K-5 should be multicultural studies, state history and US history
  • CRT centered history could be an elective in high school along with anti bias antiracist education  
  • The school system should “do the work” and change their policies.
  • They should start with anti-bias training for the teachers.
  • They should get rid of zero tolerance.
  • They should add more guidance counselors and after school tutoring.
  • They should read more whole books and discuss.
  • They should test less. That would save money.  

Im sure I’ll think of more or want to change them but that’s just off the top of my head. 

Do you believe the solution in every family is to homeschool? Should schools be abolished? Should a family where the parents work all of the time homeschool? I'm sure that you do not actually believe that the answer is always homeschooling. 

Why are so certain that you're not a racist? You're an American white person as am I. I'm a racist. Most American white people are racist. It's baked into our culture. It doesn't make us terrible people. It's not like racism is an either/or thing with the only options being Klansman or non-racist. I'm a white person so I know the things white people say to each other when we don't think anyone else is listening. 

Let's go through some of your ideas:

A dialogue with parents to decide what will be in their history and classes, not decisions handed down or hidden. - How is this at all practical? Should parents decide what is taught in history? Can creationist parents decide that the school can't teach that the Earth is older than 6K years? What about parents who want the school to teach that the Civil War wasn't about slavery? Sometimes people are simply wrong. Besides, how do think it actually works in public school? 

Give parents the choice to opt out of topics, just as they would books. - Can I opt my kid out of math or science because I don't think girls should learn that? Can I opt her out of the Civil War chapter in American history because I think that the Civil War was about state's rights and not slavery? Can you imagine the chaos in the classroom if every parent decided what their kids could learn? Besides, the public schools are not a stand in for the parents. They serve a societal goal of educating our young people to live in a democracy. 

A thorough review of history and civics curriculum with carefully chosen topics to create a well-rounded well-informed student. Sure and aren't schools already doing this? Do you really think that schools don't have a curriculum with carefully chosen topics? Besides, who is going to do this "thorough review?" And wasn't this one of the goals of the Common Core? Remember that panic for 10 years ago? 

K-5 should be multicultural studies, state history and US history - TWTM does ancient history in 5th grade. So does Waldorf. But do you think you should dictate this? (Common Core flashbacks here)

They should add more guidance counselors and after school tutoring. - Yeah and...where's the money for this coming from? 

They should test less. That would save money.  How much money do think would be saved by dumping standardized testing? 

 

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59 minutes ago, Ordinary Shoes said:

I'm a white person so I know the things white people say to each other when we don't think anyone else is listening. 

I actually totally don’t know what you’re referring to. In your experience, do most white people say racist things when they think no one is listening?

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35 minutes ago, KSera said:

I actually totally don’t know what you’re referring to. In your experience, do most white people say racist things when they think no one is listening?

I don't know if most white people do it, but I've definitely been in conversations where white people have said racist things with a wink or a smirk.  Kinda like "You know how it is, with those people, *wink*wink*".  

More subtle racism has been where they keep mentioning the race of the other person when it has utterly nothing to do with the conversation.  It's a way of feeling-out how the other white person feels about race without being direct and outing yourself as a blatant racist. 

There is a local pastor's wife that does this when she first gets to know people.   She'd tell stories of when her kid was in school, and how the kid was treated by the "Mexican teacher", or how they met this really nice "Black lady" at the farmer's market.  If it happened once, you might brush it off as being oddly detailed in with descriptions. But it happened over and over, to a degree that it felt like she was trying to indirectly make a point.  Because she was.  😠

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2 minutes ago, MissLemon said:

More subtle racism has been where they keep mentioning the race of the other person when it has utterly nothing to do with the conversation.  It's a way of feeling-out how the other white person feels about race without being direct and outing yourself as a blatant racist. 

Definitely have heard people do this. And I’ve heard other similar things where someone says something really awkward that comes across as subtly racist. I guess I just didn’t have an impression that most white people do this. I expect there are probably areas where it’s more or less common. I was surprised to hear OS phrase it like she and every other white person does that when no one is listening. 

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1 minute ago, KSera said:

Definitely have heard people do this. And I’ve heard other similar things where someone says something really awkward that comes across as subtly racist. I guess I just didn’t have an impression that most white people do this. I expect there are probably areas where it’s more or less common. I was surprised to hear OS phrase it like she and every other white person does that when no one is listening. 

I've seen it happen enough that I'm pretty sure it happens with a majority of white people.  Maybe not all white people I know, but definitely more than 50%.  

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If you're a white person and you're hearing other white people in your circle being racist on the regular, can I suggest changing your social circle? 

It's not normal behaviour, and hasn't been for a long time. 

Proclaiming one's intrinsic racism just sounds to me like religious language - we're all sinners etc. 

 

 

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1 hour ago, KSera said:

I actually totally don’t know what you’re referring to. In your experience, do most white people say racist things when they think no one is listening?

Yes. This can't be unique. I've experienced it in all parts of the country and with liberals and conservatives. 

Granted, my definition of racism is broader than that of most people. 

There's a kind of subtle racism that is very common in the USA. I'm an American and can only speak about Americans. 

Things like, "President Obama is very articulate." Haven't most of us been cautioned to avoid certain neighborhoods. Why? Were they actually more unsafe? Haven't we all heard people describe certain schools as inferior? Were they really inferior or did we assume they were because most of the children were not white? We lived in a gentrifying neighborhood in Chicago and parents talked about schools all of the time. There was a kind of code in how we talked about it. No one would come out and say that they were trying to keep their kids out of a school that was majority minority. These were North Side Chicago liberals who voted for Obama, Clinton, and Biden. 

Quote

Since so many people don’t know what racism is or how they are racist, here are three racist things that northern White liberals do: 

  1. Engage in “White flight”—when poor Black folks move close to White folks, they flee and move to racially segregated, high-income communities. Today, White flight can also take on subtler forms, especially involving schooling—it can be the decision to apply for a magnet school with more white students than a family’s neighborhood school.
  2. Live in high-income, racially-segregated communities that are not accessible to poor Black folks. 
  3. Enroll their children in racially-segregated, high-income schools that are not accessible to poor Black folks. 

White People: Here's Why Moving to a "Good School" in a "Good Neighborhood" is Racist

If none of us are actually racist and never discuss racist things when we're together, then why is there so much consistency in how we act? I think back on my experience in Chicago. I remember how I went to an open house at a building that was being turned into condos. A realtor came to talk to me and steered me to a different building. He didn't come out say, "only black people live on this block and you're white so you need to find another building." 

I read this article when we still lived in Chicago. We used to joke about how people would move to the suburbs when their kids were ready for high school. 

Quote

So roughly half of all white children who could go to CPS do, while the other half gets their education somewhere else. By comparison, the number of African-American school-age children who attend CPS is higher than 80 percent.

 

Quote

We know Chicago is almost equal parts black, Latino and white, but that’s not the case when it comes to the city’s youth. So while roughly a third of Chicago’s total population is white, most of those numbers skew older. That means there aren’t that many white school-age children to begin with.

Why So Few White Kids Land in CPS - And Why It Matters

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3 hours ago, Plum said:

It would be helpful if instead of shooting down every one of my ideas, you came up with your own. Obviously you’ve given this a lot of thought. Suggestions? 

I don't think it's your place or mine to come up with ideas right now. Why not just listen to the perspective of other communities? Why the need to push back so hard about this? 

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16 minutes ago, Melissa Louise said:

You’re not even the least bit troubled by the fact that discussions about systemic inequity have literally been banned in some of our largest states, are you? It doesn’t get more illiberal than that. UP is DOWN. LEFT is RIGHT and nothing is true. SMH. Arguing with a straw man is so much easier than arguing unpleasant facts. https://www.salon.com/2021/06/23/desantis-signs-bill-requiring-florida-students-professors-to-register-political-views-with-state/

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5 hours ago, KSera said:

I actually totally don’t know what you’re referring to. In your experience, do most white people say racist things when they think no one is listening?

I live in the south.  Yes, yes they do.
 

  ETA: 

Especially the ones who swear they aren’t racist because they are friends with one black person. But they don’t want too many black kids in their schools, their neighborhoods, their churches.  They start talking about moving when the grocery store starts having too many.  
 

It’s not a”change your social circle” issue either because it’s prevalent in all of the social circles.  I don’t hear it as much now that I’ve”come out” as a *gasp* liberal. They save it for when they think everyone around agrees with them.
 

 What someone said up thread about the subtly is dead on.  It’s usually subtle, able to deny that they meant “that”.  They didn’t mean that they want to move because 2 black families have moved in on the street, only that the character of the neighborhood had changed and they’re worried about property values. 
 

Im honestly surprised white people are saying they don’t hear this.  

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7 minutes ago, Plum said:

Coming off of George W Bush? Yes he was! What I wouldn’t give for an articulate president that can string together several coherent sentences in a row. 

I have been. I’ve posted about the perspectives of a few communities right here in this thread. 

Thanks for giving me the benefit of the doubt there. Homeschooling is not for everyone, just as online school isn’t for everyone nor is public school for everyone. We need alternatives. A lot more people could homeschool and I mean homeschool really well than think they can. They haven’t had enough of a reason to do so. 

Surprisingly, the city just north of me opened up a pandemic virtual microschool and is planning on keeping it open because they saw so much improvement through the pandemic. The city doesn’t want to run its own charter school, but they cannot deny the results. These were all kids that had extremely low test scores. The key was small classes of 20 kids max, personalized online school with support from a teacher. I like what works. 
 

How is this different from the daily worries among conservative professors and other university staff that they may be targeted, held back in their careers or even fired for their beliefs? Conservative professors have been forced to stay quiet or get cancelled. Or conservative students that get cancelled/ lose their student body position because of their politics? How is this different than states requiring private business to have a determined level of diversity on their boards or what % more the CEO can make than its employees or be fined? Why in the world has it become necessary to create a political diversity policy in universities when the country is split 50/50? 

 

The difference is the force of law, backed by the threat of government sanctions. One is a perceived threat, individual in nature, the other has been realized and is government sanctioned. I fear armed people of all kinds. I am especially fearful of armed LEOs who carry the force of law. Their power to hurt me is exponentially greater and there are fewer opportunities for redress.
 

It’s especially chilling when the state has a designated HBCU that was founded when black students could not attend its other universities. The student and academic staff there is, by choice and self-selection, unlikely to meet as yet undefined diversity tests. What happened to Nikole Hannah Jones is TAME compared to what Republicans could do to the top-rated public HBCU in the nation. Their hostility is out, open, and obvious. They are using the power of the state to require these institutions to allow white supremacists to incite violence on campus. It’s dangerous.

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1 hour ago, HeartString said:

I live in the south.  Yes, yes they do.
 

  ETA: 

Especially the ones who swear they aren’t racist because they are friends with one black person. But they don’t want too many black kids in their schools, their neighborhoods, their churches.  They start talking about moving when the grocery store starts having too many.  
 

It’s not a”change your social circle” issue either because it’s prevalent in all of the social circles.  I don’t hear it as much now that I’ve”come out” as a *gasp* liberal. They save it for when they think everyone around agrees with them.
 

 What someone said up thread about the subtly is dead on.  It’s usually subtle, able to deny that they meant “that”.  They didn’t mean that they want to move because 2 black families have moved in on the street, only that the character of the neighborhood had changed and they’re worried about property values. 
 

Im honestly surprised white people are saying they don’t hear this.  

They aren't listening, most of them. And then some of them silently agree, but won't actually admit it. Some live in such segregated neighborhoods that they never really have to listen to it because no one "needs" to say it. Everyone is white in their land unless they go to the mall in the city or something. Whole swaths of rural America are very, very, very white if not exclusively white. 

People are often so used to it, they don't recognize it even if they hear it.

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9 hours ago, Plum said:

I really don’t want to have to watch the whole video again but I remember this course took the place of social studies and she mentions doing the work all year. 

What the teacher said was that she used inquiry based learning in social studies all year. This was an example of how she used inquiry based learning to discuss anti racism and was done several months into the school year. It was actually an interesting way to get into the Colonial period for a diverse student population. So no, anti racism didn’t take the place of social studies. 

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15 minutes ago, Plum said:

Perceived threat? It’s CA law. 

The FL bill might just allow for more freedom of expression and honest discussion. College should be a place to explore and challenge different ideas, not suppress it. 

Are you assuming that having at least one or more URMs is going to lead to viewpoint diversity on a board of directors? I think the law’s writers are. I don’t. It’ll probably make for more colorful photos, that’s about it, but it’s not forcing anyone to disclose their political beliefs at risk of penalty. I, personally, prefer more of a carrot approach to encouraging diversity.

College students self-select for all kinds of reasons—interests, climate, race/ethnicity, whatever. You can’t mandate students to think like you or to spread themselves into evenly divided tribes of competing thought. The Florida law’s proponents explicitly state that their goal is to advance white Christian ideals. One of the bills chief lobbyists said:

I think that those of us who have diverse thinking and look at both sides of the issue, see that the way the cards are stacked in the education system, is toward the left and toward the liberal ideology and also secularism — and those were not the values that our country was founded on,” Bishop said. “And those are the values that we need to get our country back to.”

State Rep. Rodrigues is also on record saying this legislation will prohibit universities from prohibiting or restricting extremist groups from gathering on state campuses, regardless of the security threat. That’s not about free speech in classrooms. It’s an attempt to make sure black students can be intimidated and threatened anytime the Proud Boys get a hankering to gather.

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1 hour ago, Plum said:


 

How is this different from the daily worries among conservative professors and other university staff that they may be targeted, held back in their careers or even fired for their beliefs? Conservative professors have been forced to stay quiet or get cancelled. Or conservative students that get cancelled/ lose their student body position because of their politics? How is this different than states requiring private business to have a determined level of diversity on their boards or what % more the CEO can make than its employees or be fined? Why in the world has it become necessary to create a political diversity policy in universities when the country is split 50/50? 

 

I'm pretty sure opinions are not a protected class. Race, ethnicity, religion, gender, disability- all protected classes with historic patterns of discrimination. Political opinions and beliefs are not. The only precedent I can see is with McCarthyism and the Red Scare and I don't think we want to go back to that.

I think the law will be a joke. If I was a student I would never, ever answer those questions regardless of my affiliation. I may say I was undecided, independent, or a member of the pajama party. I don't see people cooperating with this and don't see how any kind of enforcement would be constitutional. 

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15 minutes ago, Paige said:

 

I think the law will be a joke. If I was a student I would never, ever answer those questions regardless of my affiliation. I may say I was undecided, independent, or a member of the pajama party. I don't see people cooperating with this and don't see how any kind of enforcement would be constitutional. 

Agreed. Although, IMHO, the entire point of the law is to position the Governor well with the base, in preparation for a 2024 Presidential run, so whether the law is good or sh*t or effective or not is irrelevant.

It just needs to look like he's "done something" about the hysteria-du-jour.

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22 minutes ago, Paige said:

I'm pretty sure opinions are not a protected class. Race, ethnicity, religion, gender, disability- all protected classes with historic patterns of discrimination. Political opinions and beliefs are not. The only precedent I can see is with McCarthyism and the Red Scare and I don't think we want to go back to that.

I think the law will be a joke. If I was a student I would never, ever answer those questions regardless of my affiliation. I may say I was undecided, independent, or a member of the pajama party. I don't see people cooperating with this and don't see how any kind of enforcement would be constitutional. 

If I were a student, that would certainly be my approach. It’s still galling that in the name of ‘free speech’ they’re requiring campuses to allow extremists access to students’ homes, places of residence. You know who WON’T be affected by that? Students who live off campus in massive, privately owned Greek houses.

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1 minute ago, Plum said:

Ah I must have been combining what she said and what  I read in the Best Practices of the program she used. 

Anti-bias, antiracist instruction  should happen year-round, not only during themed months or after news coverage of acts of racism and injustice. Embed an ABAR mindset into classroom culture and daily practices and routines.

This work is too critical to be an add-on or afterthought
https://www.fbmarketplace.org/empowering-educators

Which is still very different from replacing social studies with it. She’s using that lens. It’s being embedded. So when talking about Colonial America, she doesn’t just talk about the founding fathers and how wonderful they were. She also approaches it from the point of view of other people.

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