If one were in search of a picture-perfect modern example of how white supremacy works, they needn’t look any further than the Republican war on Critical Race Theory.
I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it a million more times: White people have no idea what CRT is.
And because they don’t know, officials have been able to freely spread misinformation on the academic study that examines how race affects the legal system and other structures in America, which they have reduced to an umbrella term for anything that gets white people’s star-spangled underoos all in a bunch.
Based on that misinformation, lawmakers across red state America have been able to pass laws that are specifically designed to placate white people—whether they’re willing to admit that or not—at the expense of students and other people of color who would like, for once, for the history they’re taught in schools to not be intentionally whitewashed to preserve America’s “shining city on a hill” image.
In Texas—a state that, earlier this year, passed a law that ditches requirements for educators to teach, among other things, the works of Martin Luther King Jr., the women’s suffrage movement and that the Ku Klux Klan was “morally wrong”—Republican state Rep. Matt Krause has compiled a list of 850 books he has identified as materials that “might make students feel discomfort, guilt, anguish, or any other form of psychological distress because of their race or sex,” NPR reported.
Not only did Krause take the time to put together a list of nearly a thousand books that he fears are too white male fragility-inducing to be allowed in schools, but, on Monday, he sent out a letter to the Texas Education Agency and superintendents of all school districts requesting that educators across the state report back to him if any of the books on his list are in their school’s libraries. He also asked for “a detailed accounting of where they are and how much money was spent on them,” according to NPR.
Krause didn’t mention in his request what actions would be taken once schools reported having any of the hundreds of books in their possession, but he did mention pushes to ban books about transgender identity, critical race theory and other things that leave white conservatives shaking in their hand-me-down Klan robes from the classroom.
So what books are on Krause’s “If you’re a Nazi and you know it, ban a book” list?
Well, the 16-page-long list of books I guarantee Krause never bothered reading past the title includes The Great American Whatever by Tim Federle; “Pink is a Girl Color”… and other silly things people say, a children’s book by Stacy and Erik Drageset; Let’s Talk About Love by Claire Kann; How Prevalent Is Racism in Society? by Peggy J. Parks; We Are All Born Free: The Universal Declaration of Human Rights in Pictures by Amnesty International and a few books that committed the egregious offense of having the words “Black Lives Matter” in the title.
It’s almost as if Krause just Googled “books that threaten patriarchy, the gender binary and white nationalism, not that I’m sexist, racist or transphobic or anything” and just let his search engine go wild. Literally, one of the books on his list is simply titled The LGBT Community.
Does Krause expect us to believe he’s not simply a bigot who wants bigotry to rule what students are taught? Are we to believe that when he clearly would rather students not be taught how prevalent racism is in society, that we were all born free or that pink is, in fact, not just a color for girls?
Ovidia Molina, the president of the Texas State Teachers Association, said in a statement that “Nothing in state law, not even HB3979 or SB3, gives a legislator the authority to conduct this type of witch hunt.” Molina also called the asinine request “an obvious attack on diversity and an attempt to score political points at the expense of our children’s education.”
Another way to describe Krause’s request—which he gave school officials until November 12 to comply with—is white supremacy gone wild and a perfect example of why Critical Race Theory and other critical studies like it are legitimate and necessary.