Here’s an unexpectedly revelatory clip in an interview with one of the many fake “concerned moms” who are flooding local schoolboard meetings to bray about CRT. I call this woman, Patti Hidalgo Menders, a fake because, while she may be a mom who’s concerned about many things, she’s also the president of her county’s Republican Women’s Club. So, she’s not a disinterested parent but rather a political operative.
But that’s not the revelatory part — we’ve known elite GOP operatives invented CRT panic for political gain for months. Nor is the opening segment where Menders weirdly claims that wealth is somehow a racism repellent, so racism can’t be a problem in her wealthy county. (Menders immediately says some racist-ass shit after sharing that factoid, helpfully demonstrating why the status quo is untenable.)
The interesting part occurs around the two-minute mark, after Menders says she thinks schools shouldn’t address anything to do with race since “that should be up to the parents.” Wagner responds with a not-so-hypothetical question, “How do you teach about slavery if you’re not going to talk about race?” Menders answers with a shrug: “I’m a parent. I’m not an educator.”
Teaching students about structural racism has become a political flashpoint across the country. Here's my interview with one of Virginia's leading activists, Patti Hidalgo Menders — a mother of six who's fighting the state's equity and inclusion curriculum. Via @Sho_theCircus: pic.twitter.com/qQlopoYd3j
— alexwagner (@alexwagner) October 26, 2021
In that case, Ms. Menders, go the fuck home, shut the fuck up, and let the people whose fucking job it is to know how to teach things to children do their fucking jobs in peace!
Jesus Tap-Dancing Christ, the bad faith and stupidity are overwhelming. How can we, as a nation, remain a going concern and conduct important business like educating children, addressing threats to public health, tackling existential issues like climate change, etc., with the weight of all this stupidity and bad faith dragging us under? It’s absolutely maddening.
Parents rights are the new states rights.
comrade scotts agenda of rage
Whenever I see shit like this, I think of the words of wisdom from a deep thinker in popular culture, C3PO:
I’m channeling my inner LGM Eeyoreness this morning.
It’s a multi-part, okey-doke that these (white) people are doing:
1.) Race shouldn’t be taught in schools. That’s the parents’ job.
2.) Parents refuse to educate themselves or their kids on how to be better towards marginalized groups.
3.) Kids ignorantly damage marginalized peers through micro-aggressions.
4.) Parents of marginalized victims (students) demand accountability for the trauma, bullying etc.
5.) White parent claims that their child shouldn’t be punished in any way because they just don’t KNOW ANY BETTER.
6.) School Board proposes some program to help educate students so that everyone better understands the things you should/shouldn’t say to members of marginalized groups, so students WILL KNOW BETTER and can avoid unintentionally harming them.
7.) White parents freakout, claim that they are under attack and push for legal blocking of #6, all while using #1 as the justification.
In short: it’s the job of parents to educate kids to be better, but they are entitled to just say “fuck it” and let them keep being __ist/__phobic brats, and how dare you suggest otherwise.
A perfect example is shown in the Southlake podcast.
@Baud: Nailed it! (slow, golf clap)
The Republican party has empowered the fascist instincts of their supporters.
@comrade scotts agenda of rage:
I calm myself by thinking of R2D2’s words:
2012 presidential candidate Michele Bachman got her political start opposing state- level educational standards. Railing about State indoctrination is a time-tested path to prominence for Conservatives.
If it is the parents job to educate their children, and I think we as a society need to ask ourselves “Why are so many parents failing in their job as educators?”
Could it be because the parents are racist themselves? Nah, couldn’t be that. Gotta find some other scapegoat. Like young black men who disrespect cops. It has to be the fault of others, not us…
Betty asks, “How can we, as a nation, remain a going concern and conduct important business like educating children, addressing threats to public health, tackling existential issues like climate change, etc., with the weight of all this stupidity and bad faith dragging us under?”
The answer, in my opinion, is that we can’t. It’s unsustainable. My bet is that an ugly civil war is coming, followed by some kind of split into four or five smaller countries. It’s getting harder and harder to live together— I can’t speak for anyone but me, but I simply can’t forgive the people that dragged out the pandemic, or the people that gleefully and willfully lie in the service of Trump and authoritarianism, or the people that won’t get vaccinated. They’re selfish people, and they only care about themselves. It’s fair (if ugly) to say that I hate them, and don’t want anything to do with them. I’m sure I’m not the only one who feels this way. If it was up to me, there would be a hard border at the Mason Dixon line, and perhaps a border around the entire northeast and most of the mid-Atlantic. Make ’em show proof of vaccine if they want to come here.
This is the GOP’s latest fake populist movement – and they are hoping it will get voters to show up for them at the polls (as well as screw over their enemies in the public school systems BUT GOOD).
Here in Colorado, the GOP is supporting multiple “concerned moms” and military retirees and other people that claim that they have never been involved in politics before, but they are suddenly running for school board positions and local government jobs because of the horrors of critical race theory, dirty books, and all that other nasty liberal stuff. If you press these candidates hard, it becomes clear that they have received media training at right wing leadership academies, and that they have both funding and a script.
It is a whole new wave of political saboteurs.
Ms Menders, will no one think of the children?! /
Fuckem. We need to figure out how to leave them all behind or out of the way or something.
Old Man Shadow
You just follow the example set by my 80’s Christian school and get nice textbooks that talk about how the slave trade brought Africans to America where they could hear the gospel and learn about Jesus and get “saved”. And then you talk briefly about how most slave owners were very nice people.
And then you just… don’t talk about Black people anymore until the 60’s where you passive aggressively complain about Dr. King Jr. and imply he was an adulterer and communist by talking about how the FBI kept a file on him
And then Black people disappear again. Kind of like how Native Americans disappeared from the text book after the Thanksgiving myth story that was presented as fact
And you can’t call the textbook racist, because look, we put pictures of little kids on the front and one of them is Asian.
Despite screaming SHUT THE FUCK UP in the original post, I do think it’s valuable for parents to be involved in their children’s education, up to and including offering critiques of the curriculum at schoolboard/PTA meetings. I also think parents have a responsibility to discuss the society they live in with their children, including its history, inequities, triumphs and tragedies. It shouldn’t all be left up to the school — families have a huge role to play too.
But if you want to come at the schools, you have to do the work. You can’t just show up and scream about your feelings. Don’t like how your child’s school teaches students about racism? Then propose an alternative. You can’t complain and then lamely say it’s not your job to fix it.
@comrade scotts agenda of rage: I just want to divorce them… like is America served by these people- no? Ok let them have their theocratic redneck utopia. Just leave the rest of us alone.
I don’t think it’s ignorant.
Yep. And, if those students can experience racism, then the other ones can be taught about it.
She gives herself away when she blames the treatment of young black men on their way of dressing, their attitude, their way of acting. She is unconsciously describing what she expects to see to excuse her own reactions. Why do we let a minority mess with something as important as education? I hope school administrators stand up to these bigots.
@Wag: The reality is that the vast majority of parents WON’T educate their kids about racism, because 1.) they are just as clueless and 2.) they are perfectly ok with their kids being ignorant/racist.
The bottom line is parents can’t be relied upon to educate their kids on this stuff, because we already know they aren’t doing so (as evidenced by said kids going to school and doing fucked up shit to Black students).
These parents don’t want their kids to get educated on racism at home, they want their kids not to get educated on racism at all.
@brendancalling: It’s a rural and urban divide at this point, and it’s in every state. More people voted for Trump in California than in Arkansas and Mississippi combined. Division would require blue areas to wall themselves off as city-states or something.
@Baud: “Parents” are the new “the American people.”
I’m a parent and I would have loved for my son (he’s 22 now) to have been taught about the real history of race in this country. I would have loved for him to have read Beloved. I’m sure there are plenty of parents who feel the same way.
But that’s not what they mean when they say “parents,” is it?
West of the Rockies
I will suggest one (of the probably many) ways to address the issue: art.
We would benefit from more books and films and songs and damn cartoons that point out racism, homophobia, misogyny, bigotry (in all its myriad forms).
And secondly, maybe we need to call out and embarrass the media for their incessant both-sides tapdance of buffoonery. That has to be a constant effort. We’ve gotten much better at making public people and entities responsible for their sexist behavior. Now it needs to happen with the other isms.
@Baud: you got the quote wrong.
@Betty Cracker: The tv show, “Everybody Loves Raymond”, season 7 ep 3 describes this perfectly. After complains to his daughter’s English teacher that the kids have too much homework, she gives him the state syllabus, and wants him to go over it and recommend changes. He was not expecting that. He basically goofs off for the rest of the episode, then gets his mother to review it and do his work for him. Pretty much sets up the perfect example of, “I want to yell and scream about how much homework my kid has, but I don’t want to know why, or help change it for the better”.
Also there’s still the ridiculous notion that teachers have it easy. Free summers, only have to work while they’re at school, lazy bums. As a former teacher myself, and who’s parents were both teachers, an eternal fuck you to people who say that.
Here’s a poop YouTube copy of a piece of that episode: https://youtu.be/kzhM7uPtvz0
The same people who think they know more about science than the scientists, more about medicine than the doctors, more about law than the lawyers, think they know more about education than the teachers.
What happened to people staying in their lanes and respecting others’ expertise??
@Baud: @Edmund Dantes: I can’t wait for the Little Richard/R2D2 reunion concert. It’s gonna be dope!
Old Man Shadow
Also, seems like everyone is conditioned to treat conservatives with kid gloves to get them to stop screaming instead of telling them to “Fuck off.”
@Ksmiami: Who gets the nukes?
@brendancalling: Oh no, do not wish a hot civil war, with guns and explosions and POWs and all the rest on us.
@rikyrah: They are not ignorant, they are copying the only roll models they have from the time they are babies. If a kid hears racist crap from the day they are born, they WILL repeat it even if they do not understand it. I know I did until I was TAUGHT it was bad and vile. Then I went home and told my parents what they had been saying was shit. They never totally stopped but they sure as hell cut back on it esp. when I brought home POC friends and they learned how nice they were. By the time I had a child I laid down the law and told them flat out that if I ever heard them say one racist shitty thing in front of my child, they’d never see her again.
It worked. Stick works, carrot not so much.
@Betty Cracker: defund the rural areas?…
Old Man Shadow
@waspuppet: I never knew about Manzanar until I was 38. Never knew about Tulsa until I was 42. Never read the declarations of secession of Confederate states until that age range too.
That was, I’m sure, by design. It kept me ignorant and believing in the lies I was told for three and half decades of life.
@FelonyGovt: didn’t you know the title “Parent” supersedes all those? “Mother is the name of god on the lips and hearts of little children.” – The Crow; and like any god, they get awfully f’ing angry when someone else tries to tell them what to do.
Old Man Shadow
@Parfigliano: Everyone. Because there’s no way a bunch of microstates run by religious zealots wanting the world to end so they can go to paradise wouldn’t fire off all their nukes to make it happen.
West of the Rockies
I will also point out that our side is winning, by annoyingly slow and incremental thrusts, but we are winning. Church attendance is down. Younger people are more open-minded and environmentally aware. Yes, some of them have been effectively indoctrinated by their bigoted parents and communities, but things are getting better.
This Trumpian horse shit is the cornered beast bellowing and shitting itself in a dry creek bed.
@rikyrah: Some is intentional, some is just plain ignorance due to blindspots from their privilege. People (all of us) do fuck up simply from not knowing any better all the time. Good people will try to do better. Less good people will double-down, claim they are the victim etc. A school can’t magically tell who’s good and who’s just stumbling in the learning process. But they can absolutely help make sure that every student has been given education and guidance so they have no excuse afterwards. These shitty parents want to make sure their children can always make the claim of “Well I Didn’t Know Any Better.” Having Cultural Competence in the curricula would take away that get-out-of-jail-free card, and they damn well know it. They want there to be no expectation for their children to show respect to other groups.
Everyone thinks they can run a school. You hear more about that than any other thing at school board meetings – it’s always “if you JUST” and then some lame poorly thought out thing that only applies to their kid. It’s really hard to run a solid public school, let alone an “excellent” one.
We had a retiring band director lose it once. The question from parents was “where is the vaping coming from?’ He said “YOU- it’s coming from you!” All the vaping parents- 80% or so here, it’s Trumpy- got very quiet :)
Your public school PROBABLY has a lot in common with the community it’s in. Same problems. Shockingly.
To quote Randall Munroe, “There are more Trump voters in California than Texas, more Biden voters in Texas than New York, more Trump voters in New York than Ohio, more Biden voters in Ohio than Massachusetts, more Trump voters in Massachusetts than Mississippi, and more Biden voters in Mississippi than Vermont.”
Really no good way to pull it all apart without leaving a shitload of Dems stranded in GOPland, and vice versa.
@Betty Cracker: in the ongoing “debate” over partitioning the USA, I’m going to side with Abraham Lincoln (Vampire Hunter)
Goku (aka Amerikan Baka)
Yup. It’s why I think other parents need to step up and support schools and educators because that’s the kryptonite to this BS
Yub-yub to that, brother.
Why do all these women (in this post and the last) have the car-azy eyes?!
@Kay: Hahaha, your band director copied probably the most famous 80s PSA! True then, true now.
And the key is to cut it off at the start. Instead of dealing with the whole process, attack them on point 1, that this stuff shouldn’t be taught in the schools. It has two big advantages:
@rikyrah: Disagree — they want their kids to be educated about racism at home: that racism is just fine and dandy and the right way to think if you have money and white skin.
West of the Rockies
Question: haven’t we all seen and experienced shit that we now say no way will I teach my kids that or do such shit again?
Why and how did that change come about? Whatever made us better, smarter, that’s what we need to pursue.
I just feel it was inevitable that anti cancel culture would end with banning liberal speech. The DAY I read my first anti-cancel culture screed – even before it became a full time profession- I thought “oh this is going nowhere good”.
The thing contradicts itself. They should all scrap it, think it through, and rewrite the manifesto. It’s a mess.
@UncleEbeneezer: Exactly. Why should their children learn a lesson that the parents were never taught? Drives me nuts.
You mean the line that Maryland and most of Delaware are below, and Pennsylvania and most of New Jersey are above?
Um, which side is the ‘good’ side of that line, and why?
@Geo Wilcox: Your attitudes on this stuff don’t come solely from your parents. I feel like way more of my __isms/__phobias (before I started educating myself and trying to unlearn them) came from my friends and culture than from anything my parents said/did. Parents/family are a big influence, but far from the only one in our environment. I’ve seen very feminist parents end up with extremely misogynist kids. And on the flip side, extremely racist parents who end up with actively anti-racist kids. It’s way more complicated than “this is how they were raised.” That’s a major part of it, but definitely not everything.
@Leto: This is my favorite drug PSA:
The man with the goodies is here….
@Roger Moore: wonder if we can expect the counter to “hurt someone’s feelings” education laws? Parent: “It hurts my feelings that my kid isn’t learning about racism, why it’s bad, and how we can fix it. Under your education law, if it hurts my feelings you can’t do it. So fix this shit.” I know, too simplistic, but still…
@Betty Cracker: I know. That’s the worst part of it. We CAN’T get away.
I still say a civil war is brewing and it’s going to be ugly as fuck.
@brendancalling: The demographics of this country make separate country solutions impossible. Pretty much every Blue state you can name has large or largish cities with suburbs that tend to vote Dem, have the highest vax rates, are more supportive of pandemic mitigation measures, are much more culturally diverse, less likely to engage in outspoken racist policies, also better educated, and more dynamic economically. They also have large enough populations to outvote the rest of the state, which in almost every case is composed of rural/small town Goobers — R voting, nominally evangelical, mostly white, racist, homophobic, ant-vax, anti-mask, etc.
Pretty much every Red state you can name, even in the South, also has cities that are Blue or Blue-ish, with the characteristics like those of the cities in Blue states, but with not enough aggregate population to outvote the rural Goobers.
How do you sort this out? It’s not a North-South thing, or even particularly geographic — it’s the current cultural divide between urban culture and rural/small town culture. The only solution I can see is to continue to convert the children of Red America as they are exposed to the cultural products and milieu of Blue America (help them go to college!). It’s a long-term project, and I share your dismay that we may not have enough time to accomplish it before a nation-destroying disaster.
@Immanentize: before my time, but just as funny.
When my girls were in high school (in Kentucky), I bought Howard Zinn’s book “A People’s History of the United States” for them. It worked. They questioned everything about US history after that. I was lucky enough to be in high school during the 1970’s when the “social studies” curriculum in my school district radically changed to include and highlight women, people of colour, Native Americans.
We tried seperate but equal. In the south. In the midwest. On the coasts.
It doesn’t work.
Even if you let them have the whole town, they’ll pile into trucks with two-by-fours and come to yours. For sport.
Because hating you, not being you, is all they have.
If they ever had to be anything more complex than “not you”, they would fold up. Ambient air pressure would flatten them like a beercan in the Marianas Trench.
So, no. There is no divorce. Sorry.
@Subsole: Did you really have to remind me of those characters?!!!
Next up: Jar Jar.
@Roger Moore: Totally agreed. But this is the wing-nuts’ worst nightmare and we can expect (and can already see) the pushback to be bloody hell. Hell this is WHY they’ve always feared public schools/Liberal Indoctrination.
@Parfigliano: we do… and all military bases since the GOP is actually anti- American. Besides they don’t have the education to maintain the arsenal anyway-
“Who are you to judge my honest, down-home, all-American folkways, you damn race-mixing hippie?! By God, if I warn’t a Christian, I’d shoot you twice!”
You can bet that if this woman’s baby boy didn’t get his AP credit because the school didn’t teach a book that’s almost always on the AP exam, she’d be furious.
@Roger Moore: Agreed. Like it or not, race is part of our history, from 1619 on. Two and a half centuries of race-based slavery, a short but violent civil war, an all-too-brief attempt at Reconstruction, nearly a century of Jim Crow in the South and discriminatory laws and covenants, ‘sundown towns,’ redlining and other unequal access to credit, Blacks being excluded from unions, right up to now when Black parents have to teach their kids how to act when pulled over by a cop in order to avoid getting shot and killed, and white parents don’t.
You can teach math without getting into race, but you damn sure can’t teach American history or social studies without talking about race. Not without teaching about some alternate reality instead of the one we’re in.
Looking for the lie. See none.
@West of the Rockies: dont forget Covid is killing the fuckstick red areas off… I sort of hope for a more virulent strain
@Subsole: “Because hating you, not being you, is all they have.”
This is so true and so sad. I would hate above all things to be them.
The fetishization of homespun rural common sense.
Or, paraphrasing Mr. 3 Laws himself: “The idea that your pigshit ignorant laziness is somehow more noble and honest than the dedication and work and growth I had to invest in getting a degree.”
@rikyrah: drone them out of existence. Crack down on Rt wing militias. Weed them out of federal and police jobs. We used to effectively control militia movements in the 90s. Like I’m sorry Obama didn’t the blast the Bundys off BLM lands because these ppl keep pushing unless they are pushed back.
@Subsole: Combined with the arrogant misbelief that White People (ones who haven’t actually done any reading, listening, work) somehow understand racism well enough to educate their children.
Which is why wealthy white antebellum Southerners were known for their lack of racism.
Ps – and fuck Joe Manchin wtff???!!!
There is a small glimmer of insight buried in here, but it is mainly bullshit and evasion. It reminds me of parents who say that sex education should be left up to parents, but who use this as an excuse to avoid the topic altogether.
You would also think that a Republican parent would be delighted to have a teacher talk about the party’s historical role in fighting for civil rights.
I don’t have kids in elementary school, or even nieces and nephews, so I haven’t been following this issue in great detail. I do recall that the initial California or Los Angeles proposal on teaching some of this had some stuff that upset even some supporters.
@Ksmiami: No rural/red area is populated by 100% republicans. I live in a red county, and I’m not the only Democrat. Just a minority of Democratic voters trying to change it to blue.
Yes, exactly. The way to counter this is to make sure the board of education meetings are crowded with at least as many people who want the schools to teach about racism (or reproductive health, or whatever the topic of the day is) as the ones who want the schools to stop teaching it. The right wing gets their way on this stuff because nobody effectively opposes them. Mount effective opposition and it will put some spine in the school board.
Partitioning the USA isn’t going to happen. It just isn’t.
Meesa moy moy sorry.
They already do that.
I’m afraid it’s going to be effective politically. There are definitely “woke moms” though, even where I live, so there’s a counter. They’re younger than I am, but they exist.
This woman is an extremely popular sort of “self help” person, again, even in Trumpville where I live, and she’s woke as heck. The Biden campaign consulted with her in 2020. I think we sometimes only see the other side and don’t realize there’s a lot of liberal parents. It would be a shame if they prevail on this. It will harm public school students and they have had a rough couple of years without the Trumpists descending on their schools.
The most Republican district is in Alabama and is R+34. Which means about a ⅓ of voters are Dem.
I have to say, I feel very blessed that my school is 100% POC so that I don’t have to deal with this shit.
Sure, but if we give up every time we face fierce resistance, we’re going to knuckle under all the time. It’s better to fight over stuff like this than it is to let them have their way and then have to fight on basic civil rights. The thing to understand is that the fight over teaching about racism in the schools is basically them being on the defensive. We didn’t used to teach about it, so adding it to the curriculum represents a win for liberals. We need to keep the focus of our politics there, on liberals getting what they want and conservatives fighting to keep it out, or pretty soon the fight will be over conservatives trying to go back to the bad old days and liberals fighting to keep things from getting worse.
Mike in NC
My wife subscribes to a crappy county newspaper that comes out once a week. The Letters to the Editor section always features religious extremists and assorted right-wing activists who never get tired of attacking school boards for not banning the books they don’t like.
@Baud: Answering your question from last thread. BJP came to power for the first time in 2018. It has been a tinderbox since then. The latest rampage is a tit-for-tat violence against Muslims because some Bangladeshi Hindus were victims of violence during Durga Puja in Bangladesh.
@Immanentize: Love it! I had totally forgotten about that one.
comrade scotts agenda of rage
Thank you so much for this. Been trying to find it for years.
@Roger Moore: Totally agree. I wasn’t suggesting giving up, quite the opposite. Just remarking on the incredible opposition we will face. It’s
The Moar You Know
@Betty Cracker: oh, but they have. This is happening right now in my district, and the alternative, signed off by a majority on the school board here in light blue San Diego County, is “don’t teach kids about race or racism”. That’s the alternative. It’s the Cole classic “Italian vs. tire rims and anthrax for dinner”. Amazing how long ago he understood this.
There is not going to be any compromise with these people and they’ve made that very clear. They are either going to be defeated, or they are going to be obeyed. I am not sure they can be defeated here. This district is quite white. Even the very liberal parents get a lot less liberal when it comes to teaching about race and racism.
It’s neither ignorant nor micro. Learned, yes. increasingly innocent (for the chikd-vectors), at younger ages, but kids reflect their peers behavior as much as their parents. Once again, these parents are insisting on their right to use their children to poison the communal space.
@lowtechcyclist: Yep. I’m in a blue oasis, Memphis, in a very red state. The last time I ventured out, maybe twenty miles out (I got lost), I was shocked at the yard signs.
That was several years ago, I have not ventured out since.
I can’t believe that didn’t work.
(I liked “They’re not sure yet, they just started studying it.” Refreshingly honest.)
OK: there is more to the Glenn Youngkin “Concerned Mother” ad. Glenn Kessler, of all people, opened both barrels on it. I put up long excerpts on the previous thread. Kessler is the WaPost’s “fact checker,” but he found some facts, here.
Here’s the link.
The new stuff:
Concerned mother and her husband “corporate counsel to a powerhouse lobbying firm” are major Republican donors. They each maxed out donating to Trump, for his Victory Fund and 2019 campaign.
Blake Murphy, former “child”, has apparently taken down his LinkedIn page (I noticed that yesterday)
but best of all: I’ll let Glenn tell it:
I am really starting to hope that that “child” ad reminds more Virginians to vote for Terry Mac.
And it is starting to look like a desperation move by Youngkin, no matter what Axios/Politico tell us about a “tight race.” Shore up the rioting school board parents, even while you remind everyone who is African American or respects African Americans, that you will use racial dog whistling every chance you get.
The Kessler article ends with Youngkin’s spokesman complaining that Republicans are being portrayed as racists and that — lookie there: some Democrats supported the “parents” bills that McAuliffe vetoed. Wisely. Twice.
Spokesman: “Does McAuliffe think the 18 Democrats who voted for this bipartisan legislation are racists? Does McAuliffe think the 14 members of the Black Caucus who voted for this bipartisan legislation are racists?”
No. McAuliffe does not think they are racist. He thought they were misguided, though. Which is why he vetoed the legislation. Twice.
And thank you for allowing us to bring that up in the campaign’s closing week. Please proceed, Mr. Youngkin.
@Geo Wilcox: Like my friend who first saw a black person in the city when she was 4 years old, and asked her mother about “the n*******.” When her mother shushed her and acted embarrassed she didn’t understand why, since members of her family said that word all the time to refer to black people, so she thought that’s what they were called! She told me she had never heard black people referred to in any other way.
One more for the rotating tags.
Even Memphis reflects the racist background of the area. I visited a friend there not too long before COVID hit, and the thing I noticed was the extent to which all the crappy service jobs were held by Black people, while the fancier jobs were held by Whites. I think the only place where I actually encountered Whites in service jobs was Starbucks.
Yep. To oversimplify, our family culture, our peer culture, and how we interact with them, help mold and reinforce our beliefs.
My family was great in many ways. A lot of kids in my largely male peer group when I was a kid had some truly ignorant ideas about women. I didn’t say too much directly, but quietly decided they were full of shit and had to fight against being influenced by their nonsense.
Well.. let’s take one step back – a lot of these folks don’t have any life experiences with people of color anyways – they lived in closed ecosystems, rural areas that are not diverse. So it’s easy to get information from right wing sources when you have no history with any of them.
That doesn’t mean that we don’t hold them accountable – after all they are choosing to be that way. Just taking a trip to another country would open their eyes to what they might be missing by seeing something else they can contrast with.
The thing that’s so maddening is schools HAVE been teaching about it for a couple of generations now. I guess that’s one way to stop progress: bog people down in the same damned fights forever.
Fairfax County Virginia is majority non-white. As was the high school my kids attended inside the beltway. Malevolent Mommy doesn’t like the idea that she can’t cram her cultural priorities down the throats of all school children anymore and not just her extra-special precious son. So she goes all religious zeitgeist on us, pretending to suffer moral panic that is actually just racism.
I realize that responding to something like this isn’t the time to get into details like this, but it seems to me that this is an example of why we should focus on actions rather than the people who take them. Maybe the people who voted for that legislation aren’t racists, but the legislation itself is worryingly racist. Even good people can make mistakes and back bad legislation, and it’s the job of the governor to block it when he thinks that has happened.
@Betty Cracker: It’s funny that, because of elementary education in the early ‘70s, the only person I can name from the Boston Massacre is Crispus Attucks.
ETA: None of these fights will ever be over. The assholes and the ignorant will always be there. We just need to keep trying to keep the assholes from winning.
@Roger Moore: No lie told…but I have a D US rep, and there are Black people in local elected and appointed positions. Our new chief of police comes to mind, a Black woman.
I’m thinking that there must be a way to use this — “claims racism is only a problem in poor rural areas”, something like that — but I have no idea how a campaign would go about it.
Let’s just look at how “the parents” running the schools has worked so far. There was an assault in a VA public school. The parents got the facts all wrong, and then used the incident to demonize trans kids and promote the GOP candidate for governor.
So this is going well. They’re doing great by these kids. Definitely put them in charge of all public schools.
@eclare: I love Memphis but your city gets drained by the state to throw funds at white causes like I live in Dallas but TX cities are being systematically reduced in power. It’s anti-American and disgusting
“No problem at all. Your children will be excused from health class and allowed to use the time for study, and you can teach them this subject at home. However they will still have to take the test with the other students.”
@Omnes Omnibus: Ha! Same!
On the broader point, I know the way schools teach kids about history and the role of racism, sexism, etc., has evolved a great deal. I went to Florida public schools and had a kid who also did, so I got to see some of that evolution firsthand.
What I find mind-boggling is that these Republican operatives are pretending like this is the first generation of white children to be introduced to the subject of racism in school. I remember in social studies class in fifth grade or so we had to watch “Roots” and write a report on it. “Beloved” and “The Color Purple” were on AP English reading lists during the Reagan administration. My school district wasn’t uniquely enlightened; this was standard fare. They’re acting like this is brand new, and it’s not.
@Roger Moore: McAuliffe never brought up racism in vetoing the legislation. His concerns were with leaving decisions like that under local control, of local school boards in consultation with parents and teachers (and students too), and not being overly burdensome on the schools, which already had appropriate standards in place.
Kessler described the legislative history well, with links to the proposed language and McA’s veto statements:
@Ksmiami: Some bullshit state “preservation” board tried to stop Memphis from removing a statue of Nathan Bedford Forrest. We finally found a kinda-sorta loophole and took it down, but it took years. Yes, states are def going after cities.
I for one support the idea of teaching kids that white people are bad for no particular reason whatsoever.
My youngest is watching the Sopranos (he’s never seen it) and there’s an episode where one of their kids has liberal ideas and the parents say “new teacher, the one from Oberlin”. I immediately thought of DougJ. They knew about the Oberlin student council already!
“Local control of schools” is another fake conservative principle. Right up until they put in the state law dictating what words they can utter!
@eclare: everyone keeps saying we have to be one country… how? Why? Does it even make sense when half the population lives in reality and the other half yells at school kids. This is unsustainable
I think so too, and I think Youngkin seriously miscalculated here. His only hope was to get his own base energized without waking up the Democrats. Well, he woke up the Democrats. People unfamiliar with Virginia might see those widely covered raucous school board meetings in Loudoun and conclude that Loudoun County is MAGA country. Quite the contrary! Loudoun is Northern Virginia. While Virginia went to Biden by ten points, Loudoun went to Biden by twenty-five points! So now Democrats have to be asking themselves if they want the state to be run by those people who were screaming at the school board. If Northern Virginia wakes up and votes, Youngkin loses, it’s as simple as that.
I saw an article this morning that said that early voting this year is already 3 1/2 times the total early voting turnout from 2017, and breaks down to 55% likely Dem to 30% likely Rep. So I’m not as full of anxiety and dread as I was just a few days ago.
James E Powell
@The Moar You Know:
Agree. And they are ruthless and unrestrained by truth or decency.
It was sacred! Then, just bam, they pitch it in the trash. They all do it too- the minute they control state government they start running all the schools, far and wide. Ohio now has state-mandated prayers posted next to the fire escape schematic. Nothing actually useful or practical of course- just a bunch of performative mandates.
@Betty Cracker: Because I was in IB courses, I didn’t get Beloved, etc., but we got Cry The Beloved Country and Things Fall Apart. But I did read the Autobiography of Malcolm X in IB Anthro.
I just realized that through college, I probably read more Francophone African literature that I had African American literature. W.E.B DuBois excepted. And Roots.
It was sacred! Then, just bam, they pitch it in the trash. They all do it too- the minute they control state government they start running all the schools, far and wide. Ohio now has state-mandated prayers posted next to the fire escape schematic. Nothing actually useful or practical of course- just a bunch of performative mandates.
Where are you going to move to?
@Ksmiami: How do you divide it? What about people from either side who say “Fuck you. I was born here?” Is WI red or or blue? What about Georgia?
@Kay: That’s so funny — we’ve been re-watching The Sopranos. (Well, I’m re-watching it, and my husband is watching it for the first time.) Sometimes it’s eerily like a prophesy of the decline and fall of America in parable form.
In my AP English class in the not too distant past, my assigned reading included “Invisible Man” by Ralph Ellison. Like “Beloved”, it talked about racism in the US in its story although “Invisible Man” is set in the early 20th century. There were no students in the class that objected to it or had night terrors because of it. There were no parents that threw fits because of it.
No, white conservative parents weren’t outraged about books that were about racism and the Black struggle. They were upset about Harry Potter and indoctrinating the children with his Satanic magic so a different flavor of stupid back then. It’s as if every few decades or so, white conservatives find some new literary boogeyman to whip hate about like a conservative version of Stephen King’s Pennywise the Dancing Clown that eats children’s education and imagination.
@JoyceH: I voted on Saturday and there was a steady line (about five minutes wait) in Arlington. High turnout in Arlington is always a good sign for Team Blue.
@Omnes Omnibus: “Partition instead of civil war” fantasies are popular on the right as well. People love them because it seems so simple and conclusive.
@JoyceH: I knew Loudoun was changing, but had not realized it was a Biden by 25 points county. Loved canvassing there when I lived in NoVA.
I have faith in Virginia voters.
I do not have faith in the national media to be fair.
@Ksmiami: I feel the same way, but I know it’s not practical for all the reasons folks have noted upthread.
BUT IF IT WERE
I sure hope my town would be included in New Bluemerica. I’d hate to move. I really like this house and area! =)
God, the clips from the Garland hearing that Rupar is posting are disgusting. Tom Cotton is so evil.
If that happens, my vote is to let the Cherokee have Georgia back. From what I hear, the tribal nations are serious about curbing the spread of COVID as opposed to Governor Shotgun here.
@Geminid: They aren’t simple. Very few things are simple. Everything is complicated and hard work, but we still have to do it because the alternative is completely unacceptable.
ETA: I know you know this.
@Edmund Dantes: I thought it was
be-bop-a-lu-la, she’s my baby
be-bop-a-lu-la, I don’t mean maybe
But then maybe I hear more Gene Vincent than R2D2
@Ksmiami: The thing is, the person who responded to my original post is correct. It’s not a north/south divide: it’s rural/urban. We can’t really divorce. Someone at LGM was comparing the situation to Bosnia in the 1990s
@cain: Agreed. This is why as their schools get more Black/Brown, they reflexively want to home-school. Can’t have little Connor and Madison start picking up Wokeness™ from those kids. They know they can’t keep their children away from liberal values forever (eventually they leave home) so they are trying to retain the right to brainwash them as much as possible while they can.
@Omnes Omnibus: I just think the future will look much different- maybe the western states join Canada, or there’s a partition- the Roman Empire was one until it became a tetrarchy- I’m saying though that if the GOP manages to find itself controlling all 3 branches (court included) I want nothing to do with the fascist monstrosity that will look like and be nearly impossible to dislodge without full scale Rebellion /secession
@brendancalling: then we change the form of government to give more power to people, not land…
@Joe Falco: We read Richard Wright’s Native Son which is if anything even more inflammatory.
@Ken: This. Homeschooled kids have to take standard learning tests in other subjects, why not this one?
The real principle is very simple: all government power should stay at whatever level is controlled by Republicans.
Not sure if you’re still here, but someone has been reading your comments.
Not to mention the continuing dynamic of “concerned parents” being interviewed, where we later find out that said persons are ALSO Republican operatives. The interviewer doesn’t tell us. And we can find out within like 2 minutes of google searching that’s the case.
This continued leaving out key information that really colors how the whole thing is interpreted is cynical at best. And some members of the press get defensive when the lack of context or nuance is left out.
isn’t it more like Bosnia 1372- 1990s [except the Tito years]
1372 made up for verisimilitude.
I’m a science teacher not an English teacher and I don’t teach in one of these MAGAt-infested communities. My district is extremely supportive of diversity efforts.
But if I were an English teacher and I had dipshit parents object to books like Toni Morrison because it made their kids “uncomfortable” to talk about race, I would have a handy pre-printed list of “alternative” assignments that are the most impenetrable and dense examples of classic literature from old dead white guys.
James Joyce’s Finnegan’s Wake or Ulysses.
William Falkner’s The Sound and the Fury or Absalom, Absalom!
Milton’s Paradise Lost
etc. etc. I’m sure the English teachers could have lots of fun coming up with brutal alternative assignments that will make the kids come screaming back begging for Toni Morrison behind their parent’s backs!
One of the things that right wing media has told them over and over on a daily basis for many years is that conservatives are good people, ethical people, and very smart people, who need only look inward to their own experience “common sense”. This is now an ingrained piece of the right-wing ethos in America – and that this “common sense” and lack of formal expertise is a form of superiority (free of liberal brainwashing). It has also led to an absolute explosion of extremely assured people who actually know NOTHING AT ALL ABOUT DAMN NEAR ANYTHING – and who get extremely angry if you don’t flatter them and treat them as equals with very important opinions.
This thread is probably dead but here is a very good report from the National Education Policy Center titled Understanding The Attacks On Critical Race Theory:
I think this would be a great topic/report for a FP post/discussion. This fight isn’t going away anytime soon and it can have major political implications for America/Education.
@UncleEbeneezer: This plays out exactly this way in my NW Indiana school district. My BIPOC children in a ~80 percent White school routinely heard racial, ethnic, sexual, religious slurs. The school argued each instance was an individual case, a bad seed if you will, but not part of a systemic problem. When our child was the target of an online bullying campaign the school said it was not bullying, it was a series of discreet events. Luckily my kids are fighters with parents with resources to support them. If you are a child from a historically underrepresented group and do not have tons of resources, how do you support your kids?
Similarly, when our eldest child took “World Literature” the authors were all male and all but one were European or of European descent. I asked why no female authors and no authors from Latin America, Africa, the Middle East, South Asia, East Asia, etc. I was told the school would look into it. We offered to purchase a classroom set of books, selected by the instructor, written by a woman and/or someone from the Global South. Our offer was rejected. Three years later we went through the same process with our younger child. While I did here the course recently changed to be more inclusive, it took years to get any sort of change.
@Bagel J: I’m so sorry. That has to be so hard. Just listening to the personal accounts of students on the Southlake podcast (after a video surfaced of students using the n-word off campus, the minority students of the school came forward with HUNDREDS of stories of instances of casual racism they had endured) was absolutely heartbreaking. And when faced with the opportunity to do something about it to promote diversity and inclusion, the mostly-White residents of the North Texas town pushed back and won the next school board election in a LANDSLIDE. So depressing…
@brendancalling: Civil war is already here.
Charlottesville, 1/6, vaxximorons …
If it gets worse it will be incremental, not abrupt, at least for a while.