In the hyperbole stakes, there may be no greater opponent that a progressive racialist with a firm agenda.
Ibram X. Kendi, the hugely popular anti-racism guru whose book titled (appropriately enough) “How to Be an Antiracist” is required reading among college students and K-12 educators across the country, now has declared that opposition to critical race theory is “the second assassination of Martin Luther King Jr.”
This is because anti-CRT folks dare to use the venerated civil rights icon as a means to get across their message. For example, GOP U.S. Senate candidate Josh Mandel recently told a crowd “What the liberals are doing by advancing the cause of critical race theory—they are stomping on the grave of Martin Luther King.”
Folks like Mandel always focus on King’s iconic line that one day his “grandkids would be judged not by the color of their skin but by the content of their character,” Kendi complains.
“The sniper shots aimed at King’s body of work sound this way almost every time,” Kendi says. “These self-professed admirers of King are digging a new grave, and burying King’s body of work within it […] they disregard the lines before and after it, when King lamented that his dream was being thwarted by ‘vicious racists’ in places ‘sweltering with the heat of oppression.'”
The anti-racism “expert” also uses a 1967 MLK quote to indict CRT critics: “It is an aspect of their sense of superiority that the white people of America believe they have so little to learn.”
[T]he second assassination is about King and hardly about King at all. If Mandel is an avatar of the snipers, then King is an avatar of history. The second assassination of King is the latest assassination of history. The war on science, on expertise, on facts, on journalism, on democracy necessitates a concomitant war on history. And the war on history is the war on education—as history is essentially educational. If an anti-racist King can be turned into a color-blind conservator of racism, then anyone and anything from history can be assassinated. Pro-slavery Founding Fathers can be recast as having been “against slavery.” Racist Confederate rebels can be recast as “not racist” heroes deserving of monuments in town squares.
Assassinating the reality of the past assassinates the reality of the present (and creates a new simulated reality). In this simulated reality, critical race theory can be warped into being like Jim Crow. Anti-American insurrectionists who attacked the U.S. Capitol on January 6 can be presented as pro-American patriots. Education can be turned into indoctrination, and indoctrination can be turned into education. Teaching children that there’s nothing special about their skin color can be turned into teaching children to hate their skin color.
All of which proves Kendi isn’t actually concerned about facts and history than with politics … and twisting it to suit his needs. This is why he’s said opposition to CRT is akin to that of the landmark Brown v. Board of Education, referred to the term “legal vote” as “racist,” and called white parents who adopt black children “colonizers.”
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