Those fervent conservative Free Speech Warriors have hit on a new strategy to protect our sacred right to say anything we want to anyone we want to: banning the bad words. Wisconsin Republicans have proposed sweeping censorship of words and concepts from the public schools there.
Curiously, they forgot to ban “irony”. Maybe they didn’t know the word exists.
Fortunately, the bill is just posturing by sanctimonious Republicans, and has virtually no chance of passing. If it did, I suppose I’d have to gallop across the border to rescue my granddaughter once she hit school age.
It’s such a strangely blatant defiance of the principles these people usually hide behind, but there’s a reason for it. We can’t make our white children conscious of racism.
The Wisconsin Assembly passed legislation on a party-line vote Tuesday that would bar public schools from teaching critical race theory, the latest Republican-controlled legislative chamber to take action on a culture war issue that erupted in school board meetings around the country this summer.
The measure mirrors efforts in other states to block teachers from instructing students on concepts of racial injustice or inherent bias.
But in testimony before a Wisconsin Assembly committee considering the bill in August, one of the measure’s lead authors went farther than in other states, spelling out specific words that would be barred from the classroom.
“It has come to our attention, and to some of the people who traveled here to Madison today, that a growing number of school districts are teaching material that attempts to redress the injustice of racism and sexism by employing racism and sexism, as well as promoting psychological distress in students based on these immutable characteristics,” state Rep. Chuck Wichgers (R) said of his bill. “No one should have to undergo the humiliation of being told that they are inferior to someone else. We are all members of the human race.”
Nothing in Critical Race Theory is about telling anyone they are inferior — quite the opposite. You can tell what really concerns him, though: the idea that white people might be told they’re inferior. When it was just discrimination against brown people, then it was OK to talk about their imaginary inferiority.
Wichgers, who represents Muskego in the legislature, attached an addendum to his legislation that included a list of “terms and concepts” that would violate the bill if it became law.
Among those words: “Woke,” “whiteness,” “White supremacy,” “structural bias,” “structural racism,” “systemic bias” and “systemic racism.” The bill would also bar “abolitionist teaching,” in a state that sent more than 91,000 soldiers to fight with the Union Army in the Civil War.
The list of barred words or concepts includes “equity,” “inclusivity education,” “multiculturalism” and “patriarchy,” as well as “social justice” and “cultural awareness.”
Whoops, there goes social studies and history.