On April 29, 2021, the Oklahoma legislature voted in favor of House Bill 1775.
The actual tally was 70 yeas and 19 nays. Eighteen of the 19 who voted against this bill were Democrats. All 70 supporting it were Republicans.
You might rightly ask what it is about this legislation that caused such a partisan divide. Why did absolutely no Democrats support it?
Well, let’s let the bill speak for itself. Here’s what it says.
“HB 1775 is a new law that prohibits [any] teacher, administrator or other employee of a school district, charter school or virtual charter school [from teaching that] one race or sex is inherently superior to another race or sex.”
The bill then goes on to clarify that pursuant to the governor’s signature; it will, henceforth, be illegal in the state of Oklahoma for any educator to promote the idea that any human being “by virtue of his or her race or sex, is inherently racist, sexist or oppressive” or to teach that any person “should be discriminated against or receive adverse treatment solely or partly because of his or her race or sex.”
Finally, HB 1775 unequivocally states that no public education at any level in the state of Oklahoma should include instruction that “moral character is necessarily determined by [a person’s] race or sex,” or that “an individual, by virtue of his or her race or sex, bears responsibility for actions committed in the past by other members of the same race or sex,” or [that any student] be told they should “feel discomfort, guilt, anguish or any other form of psychological distress on account of his or her race or sex.”
So, I ask the question again: Why are Democrats standing nearly alone in opposing this bill? The answer is simple. They are racists. They are sexists. They are bigots. They are segregationists who seek to divide. They are adolescents stuck in a perpetual selfie of “me and mine” and “us versus them.” Their god is not found in the Bible but rather in the mirror. They are intellectually and epistemologically lost. They are Democrats.
In my book, “Grow Up! Life Isn’t Safe, but It’s Good,” I offer the following:
“When your god is diversity, unity will never be tolerated. Diversity is self-centered. At its core, it divides. It is grounded in the premise of me-against-you and us-against-them. It is childish. It is selfish. It is a perpetual whine.
“Children are, by nature, individualistic and insular. They don’t care about much other than themselves. They want what they want. Other people and their needs may never even cross their minds. Adults, to the contrary, see the wisdom of promoting unity rather than division, integration rather than segregation, a United States rather than a ‘divided states.’ Adults care more about the ‘first thing’ of personal righteousness than the ‘second things’ of our personal rights.
“When we reverse the order and focus on second things, we get neither the first nor the second. It is only by dying to self — that is, setting aside our childish individualism — that we discover the first thing about who we truly are and what we are meant to be.
“Our true identity isn’t found in race or gender. It isn’t found in personal grievances or our narcissistic infatuations. We are neither Jew nor Greek, male nor female, black or white. We are human beings, and selfless unity rather than self-centered demands must be our first thing.
“Professors, politicians, pundits, and even preachers do our nation great harm by enabling young people to fixate on those things that are second. As Richard Neuhaus warned, such ontological dyslexia only brings with it the ‘profound bigotry and anti-intellectualism and intolerance and illiberality of liberalism.’
“This enabling of adolescence and its fixation on ‘me and mine’ is growing with each decade. It is stunting the development of our kids and our culture. We are force-feeding our progeny a steady diet of individualism and diversity rather than the higher ideas of sacrifice and unity. Why are we surprised to see a generation of self-centered adults frozen in childish claims of entitlement and demands for their fair share?
“We have set up those who follow us for failure by encouraging them to believe that their safety is more important than their neighbor’s soul. We have taught them that they are entitled to everything rather than obligated to give anything.”
The bottom line is this — Democrats refused to support Oklahoma HB 1775 because they are perpetual children who are more interested in making the mud pies of blame and shame in the back allies than in celebrating a vacation at the beach of selflessness and sacrifice.
Democrats refused to vote for this bill because they refuse to grow up.
• Everett Piper (dreverettpiper.com, @dreverettpiper), a columnist for The Washington Times, is a former university president and radio host. He is the author of “Not a Daycare: The Devastating Consequences of Abandoning Truth” (Regnery) and, most recently, “Grow Up: Life Isn’t Safe, But It’s Good” (Regnery, 2021).