A report from Christopher Rufo, a writer with the City Journal, says that teachers in the San Diego Unified School District are being forced to attend “white privilege training.” This is no great shock, coming from the same district that recently announced its plan to combat racism by completely reworking their grading system. No longer will students be penalized on their report cards for turning their assignments in late, or failing to show up to class. Neither will grades be based on a yearly average. It is not clear what grades will be based on now. Perhaps the students will be given whatever grade they feel in their hearts they deserve.
The obvious implication of the rule change is that minority students can’t be expected to show up to class or turn in assignments on time, so the system must be radically altered to give them a shot. As usual, the attempt to combat racism only succeeds in creating racism where it didn’t previously exist — which brings us to the reported white privilege training previously mentioned.
Christopher Rufo writes:
San Diego Unified School District is forcing teachers to attend “white privilege” training, in which teachers are told “you are racist” and “you are upholding racist ideas, structures, and policies.”… The training begins with a “land acknowledgement,” in which the teachers are asked to accept that they are colonizers living on stolen Native American land.
The power point slide says that “we must acknowledge the hidden history of violence against indigenous peoples in an effort to move towards justice.” But when is this not acknowledged? And how is it hidden? It is drilled into our heads at every opportunity that the white settlers were murderous land thieves. It is acknowledged, if anything, too often, and with too much hyperbole, and with little sense of perspective.
The history of the entire globe, every settled part of it, is awash in the blood of conquest. Before whites ever showed up in the Americas, this land was being fought over, often quite brutally. Does that excuse whatever sins any white man committed? No. But it does mean that our reckoning with history must include more than just white men, or else it is not a reckoning with history but a targeted attempt to scape goat a particular race of people. It is racist, in other words.
Then [the teachers] are told they will experience “guilt, anger, apathy, [and] closed-mindedness” because of their “white fragility.” After watching clips of Robin DiAngelo and Ibram Kendi, the trainers tell the teachers: “you are racist,” “you are upholding racist ideas, structures, and policies,” and that they must commit to becoming “antiracist” in the classroom. They must submit to the new racial orthodoxy. The teachers are told that they are part of an oppressive white power structure. The trainers claim that “white people in America hold most of the [power]” and that white teachers have an “ability to thrive” that is “being preserved at every level of power. Finally, teachers are told they must become “antiracist” activists. They must “confront and examine [their] white privilege,” “acknowledge when [they] feel white fragility,” and “teach others to see their privilege.” They must turn their schools into activist organizations.”
None of this is unprecedented or unique. This is critical race theory, and it has infiltrated many of our cultural institutions, especially schools. We are probably at the point now where this sort of thing cannot be stopped until some white employee, somewhere, files a racial discrimination lawsuit. On the merits, it would be a rock solid case. Here we have an employer singling out employees by race, subjecting them to degrading and insulting treatment, and requiring that they accept and embrace such treatment. There would be no debate about its illegality if an employer required that black employees undergo deprogramming for their “black privilege.”
Indeed, if black employees were singled out as a race for any reason at all, except in only the most positive light, it would be universally condemned as illegal racial discrimination and harassment. And for good reason. Here’s how the EEOC defines workplace harassment:
Harassment is a form of employment discrimination that violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967, (ADEA), and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, (ADA). Harassment is unwelcome conduct that is based on race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy), national origin, age (40 or older), disability or genetic information. Harassment becomes unlawful where 1) enduring the offensive conduct becomes a condition of continued employment, or 2) the conduct is severe or pervasive enough to create a work environment that a reasonable person would consider intimidating, hostile, or abusive.
Sitting your employees down and informing only those who belong to a certain race that they are “privileged,” “fragile,” “racist,” and the descendants of murderers and thieves, certainly qualifies as “unwelcome conduct that is based on race.” It would be reasonable for any employee subjected to such treatment to feel like they are in an intimidating and hostile work environment. And given that these training sessions and seminars are often mandatory, making them potentially a “condition of continued employment,” it would seem that both qualifiers for harassment are met. All that is needed now is for someone with standing to have the courage to fight back and defend their rights. Until that happens, the madness will continue.
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