The Biden administration’s proposal to fund education programs informed by Critical Race Theory (CRT) is “dangerous and pernicious,” according to senior policy analyst at the Independent Women’s Forum, Inez Stepman.
In April, the Department of Education proposed a new rule to prioritize funding education programs that incorporate the New York Times’ 1619 Project and critical race theorist Ibram X. Kendi into their teaching of U.S history and civics.
The Department outlined new priority criteria for a $5.3 million American History and Civics Education grant, as well as exemplary materials for K-12 educators to use.
However, Stepman, who is also a senior contributor at The Federalist, told Epoch TV’s “American Thought Leaders” program that Ibram X. Kendi’s teachings are “incredibly radical” and may instead put the United States on “a very dark path” by teaching children to actively hate each other.
“Just to give you an idea of how radical his scholarship is, one of the things he’s proposed [in his book, Stamped from the Beginning] is to create a department of ‘anti-racism’ in the federal government,” Stepman said.
“So far, that sounds unobjectionable to most people. But he wants that unelected department staffed by trained academics, presumably by him, to have veto power over every municipal state and federal law in the country, if it creates, in his eyes, any kind of disparity between groups. And he wants that body to have veto power over who stands for political office.
“That’s incredibly radical, incredibly contradictory with the American system. But yet the Department of Education is citing this guy as an example of what they want to encourage schools around the country to teach young Americans who then grow up to be voters in this republic.
“I call it woke Stalinism … his position is that a group of unelected academics should have complete veto power over all laws in the United States, and kind of similar to how it works with the mullahs in Iran, to basically select the slate of candidates. The people may vote, but only on the candidates or among the candidates selected by people who think like Ibram X. Kendi.”
Stepman said that Kendi pushes the narrative that in order to undo past discrimination, we need to actively discriminate in favor of marginalized groups today.
“This is literally the U.S. government, according to this proposed rule, this actually becomes a regulation issued by the Biden administration. The federal government of the United States will be giving grants to public schools around the country to teach Kendi. And I think this is incredibly pernicious, especially for a multi-ethnic republic like the United States where we do have citizens of all different backgrounds.
“So I find this whole thing to be dangerous and pernicious and definitely not something that the federal government should be going out of its way to encourage.”
Stepman also noted that the central claim in the 1619 Project that the United States wasn’t founded in 1776 but in 1619 when the first African slave arrived on its shores is “flatly historically false.”
“It has been recognized as false by historians all the way from the socialist left to the conservative, right,” she said.
“And there are many, many inaccuracies besides that one in that project. Again, it’s not something that the federal government should be encouraging teaching in our schools, when it has been blasted across the spectrum, for being not just a radical idea or have radical perspective, but to actually be completely historically inaccurate.”
Stepman added, “We’re not a homogenous society, we never have been. So to actively teach us reasons to hate each other, to me seems to be completely wrongheaded and dangerous and in fact putting the United States on a very dark path.”
CRT has gradually proliferated in recent decades through academia, government structures, school systems, and the corporate world. It redefines human history as a struggle between the “oppressors”—white people—and the “oppressed”—everybody else—similar to Marxism’s reduction of history to a struggle between the “bourgeois” and the “proletariat.” It labels institutions that emerged in majority-white societies as racist and “white supremacist.”
Like Marxism, CRT advocates for the destruction of institutions, such as the Western justice system, free-market economy, and orthodox religions, while demanding that they be replaced with institutions compliant with the theory’s ideology.
Stephan added that “slavery existed for millennia, before the United States,” something she said 30 or 40 percent of people under 40 do not know.
“They think that the United States invented slavery, which is, again, a condemnation of our education system,” she said.
GQ Pan contributed to this report.