Marxist-based critical race theory is distorting not just the principles upon which the nation was founded, but even the facts of recent events. Unchecked, the revisionist history children are being exposed to is a real-life distortion that harms their development and America.
Many people welcome “fantasy” movies and novels that help us escape and offer a different perspective. The popular 1995 novel “Wicked” is one such fantasy distortion of another fantasy — the Wizard of Oz. “Wicked” novelist Gregory Maguire took L. Frank Baum’s children’s classic and turned it upside down.
The characters of Baum’s Good Witch Glinda and his Wicked Witch of the West, whose real name, in Mr. Maguire’s book, is Elphaba, are refashioned as old university friends who originally disliked each other. Mr. Maguire turned Mr. Baum’s beautiful, benevolent Glinda into a spoiled, but “popular” narcissist, while Elphaba was framed as merely inconveniently green-skinned.
Elphaba, it turns out, is never afraid to stand up for what she believes to be right, and is the one who demonstrates strong values. On a visit to Oz, she and Glinda discover the Wizard is corrupt. Despite this revelation, Mr. Maguire’s Glinda is tempted by the Wizard’s invitation to join his administration, while it is Elphaba who vows to fight the Wizard’s injustice.
So, who’s “wicked” now?
While Mr. Maguire revised a children’s fantasy, CRT is revising facts and replacing them with Marxism and CRT. Themes of racism, “white supremacy” and America as oppressive will ensure children grow resentful of this land amid divisiveness.
In Minnesota, the media and academics are holding up 20-year-old Black man Duante Wright — fatally shot in an apparent accidental discharge by police officer Kimberly Potter — as a civil rights hero, despite being previously charged with a robbery that involved choking a woman.
Recently, the third draft of the 2021 Minnesota K-12 Academic Standards in Social Studies was released. What is found in this third draft of the Minnesota standards?
Katherine Kersten of the American Experiment writes in her analysis: “The bad news is that — though there have been some tweaks — the standards are the same in all essentials. They are driven by the themes of critical race theory: group identity based on race; life as a power struggle between oppressors and victims; and American history as a shameful story of domination, marginalization and injustice. Ideology has replaced the basic factual knowledge students need to be informed citizens.”
Ms. Kersten notes that Std. 23 in Grade 9 “teaches that a student’s personal identity is determined by his or her group status.”
“Apply these understandings to one’s own social identities and other groups living in Minnesota, centering those whose stories and histories have been marginalized, erased or ignored,” the standard reads.
Stds. 24 and 25, Kersten continues, “require students to organize to ‘resist’ America’s ‘systemic’ abuse of power against ‘marginalized,’ ‘oppressed’ groups.”
Minnesota’s third draft distorts the nation’s founding.
While the American Revolution is mentioned, key figures such as George Washington and Paul Revere and places such as Bunker Hill and Lexington and Concord are absent.
“Instead, students ‘analyze dominant and non-dominant narratives,’ ‘examine Black, Indigenous or women’s perspectives,’ etc.,” Kersten explains, and adds:
• The draft is silent on America’s role in WWII, President Franklin Roosevelt, Prime Minister Winston Churchill, Premier Josef Stalin or D-Day.
• It omits the Sept. 11 attacks, but requires students to “identify and evaluate how governmental and non-governmental institutions have responded to foreign and domestic terrorism in the United States, including xenophobia and Islamophobia.” (22.214.171.124)
Like earlier drafts, the third eliminates the basics of world history from Minnesota’s K-12 curriculum. Ancient Egypt, the Roman Empire, the Middle Ages, the French Revolution, Napoleon and the Russian Revolution are also absent.
Significant eras, such as the Renaissance and Scientific Revolution are only named once to instead emphasize the role played by Islam: “Identify the influence of Islamic centers of learning on the European Renaissance, the scientific revolution and society today.” (126.96.36.199)
“The draft is silent on the Soviet Union and its gulags, the Chinese Cultural Revolution, Pol Pot’s Killing Fields and North Korea,” Ms. Kersten also observes. “Instead, it reserves a tone of outrage for U.S. ‘imperialism’ and ‘oppression.’”
Clearly, the left continues to describe America as a dangerous and racist place for African Americans, even though this is the least racist period in the country’s history. The America I grew up in is a very different place than the country my father knew during 1940s-1960s as a young Black man in the South.
Yet, the third draft of the Minnesota Social Studies Standards makes no reference to the cultural genocide of Black America and its impact on the economic and academic disparity in America.
In my lifetime, we have seen the Black community transformed from 80% two-parent families to 80% fatherless homes, without one national initiative to reverse the trend. Nevertheless, many educated Blacks from Africa and the Caribbean Islands, who legally immigrate to the U.S., earn more than native-born Black Americans.
These immigrant Blacks view America as a land of opportunity in contrast to many who have lived here their entire lives and have been indoctrinated in hatred against whites, capitalism and America.
What truly is “wicked” is distorting the facts and indoctrinating our children with lies about America’s founding principles and our nation’s position as a beacon of freedom for all.
• Kendall Qualls is the founder and president of TakeCharge and a former U.S. Congressional GOP Candidate from Minnesota.