DAVE ROSS

Ross: Is it the guilt that has people upset about critical race theory?

Jul 13, 2021, 5:48 AM | Updated: 9:57 am

I’ve been trying to a get a handle on what’s got people so upset about critical race theory.

This is the proposed curriculum that focuses on race as a central theme in American history going back to the earliest European settlements.

There this idea going around that the whole purpose is to make white people feel guilty.

I guess because I grew up Catholic, I just don’t find it a big deal to feel guilty. I was taught that we’re all sinners and so we all need forgiveness. However, if there IS anyone listening who has never felt guilty, you owe it to the rest of us to start your own religion so we can worship you.

Anyway, while we’re waiting for that, let’s look at the current state history standards expected of our students.

Here’s a question in the state high school standards: “How are the historical events in the United States’ past linked to its present? What is the enduring legacy of marginalization of Native Americans, people of color, and of slavery?”

That’s in the standards right now.

Well, to answer that question, you’d have to know the history of the various groups that settled this area.

We already have a special curriculum on the Holocaust, and a special curriculum on Tribal sovereignty. And on the internment of Japanese-Americans. But the word “Reconstruction” is mentioned only once in the state standards, and I saw no mention of Jim Crow laws, no mention of the race-based massacres that followed the Civil War, no mention of redlining. So there’s a gap there.

I can see why historians might want to fill that gap.

So to me, the issue about critical race theory is not who might feel guilty, but why it was successfully suppressed for so long? Or did that question just answer itself?

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Ross: Is it the guilt that has people upset about critical race theory?