Critical Race Theory has become a flashpoint for America, especially in education, as its proponents claim all of the U.S. is racist, whites are oppressors and blacks are victims.
The result is that in many states lawmakers have decided that there’s no need for such material in their education systems, and they have banned it. Leftists, of course, are suing over those decisions.
But those who oppose the ideology now have been given a huge new weapon in their fight – and it comes from the Biden administration. It is constitutional expert Jonathan Turley who explained online that the argument was delivered during a recent Supreme Court hearing on religious schools in the state of Maine.
“In the federal system, President Biden rescinded an order used to block teaching of CRT and other systemic racism theories. However, the Education Department dropped references recently to CRT material in a proposal but stressed ‘those decisions are – and will continue to be – made at the local level.’ The administration previously linked to a handbook advocating CRT lesson plans,” Turley explained.
“That’s why [Chief Deputy Attorney General Christopher] Taub’s answer is so interesting. The Biden administration before the Supreme Court is arguing that legislatures can always ban CRT and other subjects if they view them to be inimical to education. It will be interesting if that statement is cited in the briefs in any of these pending cases.”
Turley explained the issue arose in Supreme Court arguments over a Maine program to provide vouchers to students to use in private schools when access to public schools is limited. The state, however, bans the use of the vouchers in Christian schools, and is being sued over that.
“A majority of conservative justices seemed to be leaning toward supporting the challengers in demanding that the state remain strictly neutral in such tuition programs. However, the moment that most struck me was an exchange between Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito and Chief Deputy Attorney General Christopher Taub where Taub appeared to acknowledge that legislatures have every right to ban critical race theory (CRT) from being taught.”
He said, “The exchange occurred as Taub was being questioned on the meaning of ‘sectarian’ under the law. Taub was arguing that a state has a right to demand ‘religious neutrality.’ Alito pushed Taub to the edges on whether it was then permissible for a school to push a curriculum that ‘inculcates a purely materialistic view of life.’ Taub responded that ‘it’s possible that, you know, down the road some school might pop up that is teaching something else, not religion but something else, say, Marxism or Leninism or, you know, white supremacy. Clearly, those kinds of schools would be doing something completely inconsistent with a public education.'”
Alito then asked: “Would you say the same thing about a school that teaches Critical Race Theory?”
Taub said, “So I think that that is something that the legislature would have to look at. I mean, that one’s closer because, frankly, I don’t — I don’t really know exactly what it means to teach Critical Race Theory. So I think — I think the Maine legislature would have to look at what that actually means. But — but I — I will say this, that — that if — that — that if teaching Critical Race Theory is — is — is antithetical to a public education, then the legislature would likely address that.”
Turley explained it’s already established that legislatures can dictate educational standards, but said the statement “is not likely to please many in the teachers unions. Almost a dozen states (including Idaho, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Texas, Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina, Arizona, and North Dakota) have passed legislation to bar CRT and roughly a dozen more are considering such legislation.”
In court already is a claim from the American Civil Liberties Union and others that the Oklahoma ban on teaching CRT violates the free speech of students and teachers.
And the National Education Association is suing a mother over her attempt to gain access to CRT teaching records.
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This article was originally published by the WND News Center.