Critical Race Theory latest target of those who seek to misinform, stir division
When we talk about just about anything that needs a solution(s) we look at strengths, weaknesses, compromises and then improve it. In the last few months a legal theory that rejects Marxist and Socialist analysis been tagged by a partisan press as both Marxist and Socialist. Crazy contradictory stuff.
In fact Critical Race Theory is simply a type of legal analysis (Frankfurt School) which looks at a law’s effects and examines them to see if they shed light on the law’s original intent, its strengths and its shortcomings to inform the future and do things better.
CRT sheds light, for example, on one consideration that came up when the Constitution was written. Slavery would still be legal if so many slave states had not traitorously left the Union and lost their votes in the Senate. The South lost the 1/3 needed to block abolition; even today, with 50 states, there would not be enough votes in the Senate overturn slavery with the 1/3 blocking right.
To add insult to injury, the south also lost the ability to count non-voting Blacks as citizens which it had counted towards proportional representation in House of Representatives. That is why Democrats in the 1880s passed Jim Crow laws designed to keep Blacks from voting. (Jim Crow-like restrictions that target poor blacks are again an issue. True there are no fees for voting now but there are no collection boxes and few polling places near where Blacks live under these laws now either.)
It’s also important to know that the final fury for the Civil War started because northern states refused to return escaped slaves. In fact just over in Syracuse its citizens would not let the US Army take former slaves back south to their owners. That was one of the major issues the South pointed to when it said it had to succeed to preserve slavery.
Now, we study the ins and outs of pitting the promise of liberty contained in the Declaration of Independence versus the formality of the Constitution. Preserving that balance was part of traditional legal interpretation taught in law schools since 1802 and why some Supreme Court Justices even now always consider the effect, if any, their decision may have on the promise of “Liberty.”
It is relevant to discussions of Constitutional change. For example, in order to pass the 13th Amendment doing away with slavery, a provision making it legal to enslave blacks for crimes had to be included. Then that compromise was dealt with under the 14th amendment which required “due process” to all citizens when liberty is at stake. And the 14th, and then the 15th amendments, gave Congress the power to trump those Jim Crow laws. It did that in the ’66 Civil Rights Law the Dixiecrat arguments then are the Republican argument now. Interesting, eh?
Also it’s relevant now when debating Confederate statutes that when the legal bars on building those monuments were removed at the turn of the last century, hundreds of Confederate-related statutes, roads, and schools were erected in dozens of states with NO ties to the Civil War! Knowing that informs the debate on whether or not there is a legitimate historic tie to the Civil War or to racism when arguing about what to do with them. That is why so many say it’s a community decision about what it wants to say about itself.
Critical Race Theory looks at historic fact to help lawyers, politicians, prosecutors, judges, police, and historians discuss the implication of their jobs. History informs. Even discussing numbers stuff like the compliance rate with reporting hate crimes is affected. For some it’s simply outlook. CRT is one tool for problem identification and solution. You need to know what’s going on to address it.
Misrepresenting Critical Race Theory is pretty low politics. It shows the speaker has not read Wiki to learn what it’s about. Moreover it’s racist to call something that is not racist, racist – it’s a “Woke” rewriting of history.
Who is going to claim we should not try to have accurate facts? Who is going to claim they know all there is to know?
For example the numbers tell us that tax cuts over the last 40 years have created a wealthy class. Is that Marxist or just economics? And we just had a President who the conservative courts uniformly have held violated fundamental Rules of Law. Is discussion of that off limits too? And shouldn’t we be discussing and investigating how Facebook data and other sources show that Republican precinct data ended being used for ad buys by fictitious Russian hackers.
Since facts are important isn’t it interesting to know that the earth’s crust trapped twice that amount of heat from the sun since 2006 or do we ignore the thermometer?
Ignoring data is tearing us apart. Frankly, as a society, we need to deal with the limits of gullibility. Today it’s CRT. Tomorrow will it be the thermometer again?
Non-Civil War states may have to stop claiming their statues are historic. Better answers about putting a higher percent of polling places in white neighborhoods is worth straight answers. Someday it could be how the middle class vanished.
Agree or not but listen and talk respectfully but the current descriptions of CRT are WOKE.
Conrad F. Cropsey