A set of values and practices

Politifact has an explainer on Critical Race Theory.

The grandfather of the movement was Harvard Law School professor Derrick Bell, who in the mid-1970s voiced frustration at the limited impact of landmark civil rights laws and U.S. Supreme Court rulings of the previous decade. While those changes aimed to broaden access to high-quality education, jobs and housing, they fell short, he said. Laws remained embedded in a set of values and practices that discriminated against people of color, Bell said.

You know, it was the same way with feminism – revived feminism, aka second wave. It was about vastly more than laws – it was about a set of values and practices that discriminated against women. Better laws are a good thing but they’re far from the only thing.

In plain terms, critical race theory holds that racism is part of a broader pattern in America: It is woven into laws, and it shows up in who gets a job interview, the sort of home loans people are offered, how they are treated by police, and other facets of daily life large and small.

Again, very similar to feminism.

CNN also has an explainer. Just listing the headings help explain what the angry Republicans are trying to shove back behind the curtain.

Land was taken

Slavery was the law

Interracial marriage was banned

Voting was restricted

Jim Crow was accepted

Lynching was tolerated

Immigration was biased

Education was curtailed

Good jobs were elusive

Housing was exclusionary

Health care was inferior

That’s CNN’s list, and it’s not difficult to think of more items. Representation in the culture for instance – movies, tv shows, theater, advertising. Representation in government. Representation by unions. Mass incarceration. It goes on and on. Why would we not talk about it? Why would we not teach about it? Why would we try to pretend it never happened?

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