Home schooling increasing, and not just due to Covid

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Allow me to simply make my point.

I am not ultimately arguing about whether public schools are "teaching Critical Race Theory" or not. While I believe they are to a certain degree as shown by my questions, we could go back and forth continually trying to argue that point. But that's what you want, isn't it? Because there is perhaps some truth in your argument that schools, on a large scale at least, are not "teaching Critical Race Theory" as a theory in total.

But you and I both know that teachers are engaged in praxis that is founded upon the ideology of CRT. So even if they are not teaching the particulars of the theory, they are encouraging students to reflect in order to raise consciousness of their oppressed existence. This consciousness raising serves as a revolutionary call to action to further identify systems of oppression in order to dismantle them.

So placing the focus of the argument on whether schools are "teaching CRT" is simply a distraction of definitions while students are continually being subjected to critical praxis, turning them into little social justice revolutionaries. But you already knew that, didn't you?
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I am not ultimately arguing about whether public schools are "teaching Critical Race Theory" or not.   While I believe they are to a certain degree as shown by my questions, we could go back and forth continually trying to argue that point. But that's what you want, isn't it? Because there is perhaps some truth in your argument that schools, on a large scale at least, are not "teaching Critical Race Theory" as a theory in total.
The OP claimed parents were checking their kids out of public school because they were pissed about schools teaching CRT.

I countered that was bullshit because CRT is a fairly sophisticated law school term that FOX News has recently turned into one of its many euphemisms employed to codify racism in less explicit terms.  As the Atlantic Monthly puts it:

[Critical Race] Theory soon stood in for anything resembling an examination of America’s history with race. Conservatives would boil it down further: Critical race theory taught Americans to hate America. Today, across the country, school curricula and workplace trainings include materials that defenders and opponents alike insist are inspired by critical race theory but that academic critical race theorists do not characterize as such.
Since academic critical race theorists came up with the term let's agree they control the term's meaning  and "defenders and opponents alike" are most mostly misusing the term and distorting its meaning beyond all use for claims like this forum.

Fox News gave only passing thought to critical race theory until last year. .... after Derek Chauvin was captured on video kneeling on George Floyd’s neck for more than nine minutes, and the United States became awash in anti-racist reading lists—some of which included books and articles that discussed critical race theory—Fox suddenly took a great interest in the idea. It became the latest in a long line of racialized topics (affirmative action perhaps being the most prominent) that the network has jumped on. Since June 5, 2020, the phrase has been invoked during 150 broadcasts.
So, this very recent and very deliberately mis-defined use of the word as it appears in Republican legislation and  punditry over the past year is almost entirely a Frankenstein of FOX News' manufacture.  If FOX News had not been misinforming you for the past year, you would not now be trying to argue that anti-racist classroom conversation are "engaged in praxis that founded upon the ideology of CRT."  FOX News taught you that- not law professors and certainly not classroom observation.

It is false to say that parents are upset about teaching CRT.  It is correct to say that parents have been made upset by FOX News propaganda painting all anti-racist speech as "radical CRT" without ever worrying too much about the meaning of the term or the truth.

But you and I both know that teachers are engaged in praxis that is founded upon the ideology of CRT.
Bullshit.   I think you are mis-characterizing anti-racist speech as CRT.

So even if they are not teaching the particulars of the theory, they are encouraging students to reflect in order to raise consciousness of their oppressed existence.
  • Now "raising consciousness about one's oppression"  is CRT?  Really?  Would you say that Moses was praxising CRT in Egypt?
  • Can you explain what you find objectionable about raising consciousness about oppression?
This consciousness raising serves as a revolutionary call to action to further identify systems of oppression in order to dismantle them.
Again, that's not just CRT- that is the nature of all Civil Rights movements.  Harvey Milk raised my consciousness about my oppressed existence as a closeted gay man, we identified that closet and the absence of civil ceremony as systems of our oppression and dismantled them with some real success over 40 years.  This reads to me as if you are using CRT to conceal an objection to civil rights movements generally.  Patrick Henry raised Americans' consciousness about  their oppressed existence as colonial subjects of the King of England, they identified the monarchy's taxes and armies as the systems of that oppression and dismantled them.   Is it only CRT when black people's consciousness is raised?  What's wrong with dismantling systems of oppression?

So placing the focus of the argument on whether schools are "teaching CRT" is simply a distraction of definitions
Beg pardon but I firmly believe there's no point in debating until both sides are in agreement on definitions.  Definitions are an essential pre-requisite and never a distraction because the debate can't be truly engaged until definitions are resolved.   I don't understand people who pretend to discuss the truth of any idea without first making sure they are discussing the same idea.

while students are continually being subjected to critical praxis, turning them into little social justice revolutionaries. But you already knew that, didn't you?
So you're objecting to students being taught to strive for a more just society?  It sounds like a good thing to me.

  • "revolutionary" is a relative term you've used twice.  To be clear, I do not see any encouragement of violence and  I do see active encouragement of non-violence in revolution in all the K-12 civil rights education that I'm aware of.
  • In terms of threats of violence and active harm to the peace of our Nation, I see any apology or endorsement for the seditions of Jan 6th as far more revolutionary and favoring the restoration of old, defeated tools of oppression- voter nullification, angry mobs, nooses on the Capitol lawn, anti-vax, etc.  I think its clear that FOX News and Trump are teaching our children far more radical  and far less sustainable ideologies than civil rights in the classroom.
It never seems to come up in these discussions but CRT is also an inherently anti-Liberal theory which I consider quite wrongheaded.  Where Derrick Bell  argues that liberation movements and equal rights under the law will never resolve the imbalances in power so long as the majority outnumbers, I counter that Feminism and gay rights even just since Bell coined Critical Race Theory demonstrates that non-violent integration is achievable and probably even the only really sustainable approach.  Equity is a fine objective but not at the expense of equality.

Whatever my objections to CRT, I oppose the suppression of CRT or any theory in the classroom.  Get it out there, let's discuss it.  The shutting down of any discussion of CRT by Republican controlled State legislatures; that is the only really revolutionary violence being done to America here.
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If FOX News had not been misinforming you for the past year, you would not now be trying to argue that anti-racist classroom conversation are "engaged in praxis that founded upon the ideology of CRT." FOX News taught you that- not law professors and certainly not classroom observation.
I don't read/watch Fox News so this accusation is completely baseless and untrue.


So placing the focus of the argument on whether schools are "teaching CRT" is simply a distraction of definitions
Beg pardon but I firmly believe there's no point in debating until both sides are in agreement on definitions. Definitions are an essential pre-requisite and never a distraction because the debate can't be truly engaged until definitions are resolved.
Then why are we still playing the game where you pretend that you don't understand exactly what I am talking about when I use specific terminology and phrases in this statement:
  • "But you and I both know that teachers are engaged in praxis that is founded upon the ideology of CRT. So even if they are not teaching the particulars of the theory, they are encouraging students to reflect in order to raise consciousness of their oppressed existence. This consciousness raising serves as a revolutionary call to action to further identify systems of oppression in order to dismantle them."
I know that you are too intelligent not to understand how definitions operate in understanding and disseminating these ideas. Yet you are still asking insincere questions like whether or not I want a just society, as though we have the same definition of justice.


But let me reiterate my post #24 as statements about what the largest teacher union in the country is promoting for teachers to engage students with in the classroom:
These above points are the practical application of Critical Race Theory. The language and the ideology are both present. But if you can identify a different ideology or framework that would be a more plausible foundation than CRT for the above points that are currently being taught in public schools, I would be happy to hear it.


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I don't read/watch Fox News so this accusation is completely baseless and untrue.
As the Atlantic Monthly article demonstrated, CRT did not exist in the American conversation until Fox News put it there last summer.  FOX News is the origin point for your misconceptions about CRT, whether or not you know it.

Then why are we still playing the game where you pretend that you don't understand exactly what I am talking about when I use specific terminology and phrases in this statement:
  • "But you and I both know that teachers are engaged in praxis that is founded upon the ideology of CRT. So even if they are not teaching the particulars of the theory, they are encouraging students to reflect in order to raise consciousness of their oppressed existence. This consciousness raising serves as a revolutionary call to action to further identify systems of oppression in order to dismantle them."
No game. 

  • Raising children's consciousness about racism is not teaching the legal theory CRT, as you concede when you say "even if [teachers] are not teaching the particulars of [CRT]....".  This is the point where where our disagreement ends since my argument is only that teachers are not teaching the particulars of CRT and so claiming as much is a fake, invented, false reason to pull your kids out of school.
  • Objections to raising a child's awareness on most  any subject is a poor reason to pull your kids out of school.
  • Raising children's consciousness about racism is a necessary part of American learning.  I don't know how you teach American history, society, literature, etc. without raising consciousness about racism in America. 
  • I have no objection to teaching (high school) children how to identify the means of oppression and how to non-violently dismantle those mean.  I don't know how you teach about voting in a Democratic society, for example,  without talking about voting as an instrument used to dismantle the systems of oppression as opposed to say, assaulting the Capitol to prevent democratic change.
if you can identify a different ideology or framework that would be a more plausible foundation than CRT for the above points that are currently being taught in public schools, I would be happy to hear it.
I could not have been more clear on this, I don't know why you are pretending otherwise.  I said:

"....you are mis-characterizing anti-racist speech as CRT."




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As the Atlantic Monthly article demonstrated, CRT did not exist in the American conversation until Fox News put it there last summer. FOX News is the origin point for your misconceptions about CRT, whether or not you know it.
Again, this assertion of yours is both baseless and untrue. I have been studying CRT for the past few years. I can't put an exact date on when it popped up on my radar, but it was well before last summer. If Fox News did not start talking about before last summer, then it cannot possibly be the source of my "misconceptions" about CRT.


  • Raising children's consciousness about racism is not teaching the legal theory CRT, as you concede when you say "even if [teachers] are not teaching the particulars of [CRT]....". This is the point where where our disagreement ends since my argument is only that teachers are not teaching the particulars of CRT and so claiming as much is a fake, invented, false reason to pull your kids out of school.
That may be your argument. And I am simply making the point that you don't have to teach the theory of CRT in order to train children to see the world as defined by CRT. And it is this critical praxis that is the cause for many parents pulling their kids out of school. While they may not articulate it clearly, that is a good reason.


Objections to raising a child's awareness on most any subject is a poor reason to pull your kids out of school.
At face value, this statement might have some merit. But when "raising awareness/consciousness" means training children to see oppression of non-whites by whites in pretty much everything, with the goal of tearing down the alleged systems of oppression, then your statement doesn't seem so innocent.


Raising children's consciousness about racism is a necessary part of American learning. I don't know how you teach American history, society, literature, etc. without raising consciousness about racism in America.
There is the game. You are misusing the term racism in order to insert your foreign definition into the conversation.


I have no objection to teaching (high school) children how to identify the means of oppression and how to non-violently dismantle those mean.
Is the Constitution a system of oppression?


I could not have been more clear on this, I don't know why you are pretending otherwise. I said:

"....you are mis-characterizing anti-racist speech as CRT."
"Anti-racist" as defined by who?
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As the Atlantic Monthly article demonstrated, CRT did not exist in the American conversation until Fox News put it there last summer. FOX News is the origin point for your misconceptions about CRT, whether or not you know it.
Again, this assertion of yours is both baseless and untrue. I have been studying CRT for the past few years. I can't put an exact date on when it popped up on my radar, but it was well before last summer. If Fox News did not start talking about before last summer, then it cannot possibly be the source of my "misconceptions" about CRT.
If you'd been studying this rather idiosyncratic branch of legal scholarship for years, one would think you'd have a better grasp of definition.  Still, I have no evidence upon which to believe or disbelieve you.  I just know that the evidence is that, generally speaking, nobody gave a shit about CRT until Tucker Carlson told FOX News viewers to.

Here's google trending for the term Critical Race Theory over the past 5 years showing that so few people googled CRT before Sept 2020 that google registers ZERO interest over all of those years- that is, not enough interest to generate any data.  


Then, as The New Republic documents:

Last September, an obscure, 36-year-old documentarian named Christopher Rufo landed a slot on Tucker Carlson Tonight. Knowing the president would be watching, he sounded the alarm about an ideology almost as obscure as he was: “critical race theory.” Rufo, who describes the theory as the notion that the United States was “founded on white supremacy and oppression,” begged Donald Trump to take action. Critical race theory, he warned, had become “the default ideology of the federal bureaucracy.” The next morning, Rufo got a call from Mark Meadows, the president’s chief of staff; just a few days later, the White House issued a bizarre memo instructing public agencies to root out the theory from government trainings.

In the months since Rufo’s TV appearance, roughly a dozen states from Idaho to Tennessee have passed or considered legislation banning critical race theory from schools and government institutions. Almost overnight, Rufo has become the standard-bearer for a hysterical movement to solve a problem that may not even exist—and in the process, charted a course for the right in the Biden era. With a likable moderate in the White House, the task for operatives like Rufo is to gin up evidence of an overwhelming conspiracy everywhere else, convincing voters that the left has taken over the school and the workplace.
Before Tucker, CRT was almost exclusively a topic for liberal law schools and HBCU's.  Tucker introduces the theory as mandatory anti-white racism more dangerous to the nation's safety than nuclear weapons and six days later Trump is passing laws against it.  FOX likes that result so much they begin substituting the obscure, undefined term CRT wherever any objection to racism arises.  By late June of this year, the Washington Post claims more than 2000 FOX News mentions of CRT over the first six months of the year while Media Matter for America documents 1300 of those mentions in just the prior three and half months or 84 times each week.  Russia Times, Newsmax, OAN join in, but none of it a about law and legal theory- almost all of the coverage is just a euphemism about anti-racism as in "teaching dangerous CRT theories  in the classroom" instead of "teaching equality and civil rights  in the classroom."

That may be your argument. And I am simply making the point that you don't have to teach the theory of CRT in order to train children to see the world as defined by CRT.
The claim that CRT makes any attempt to define the world is pure falsehood.  You are inventing a fictional worldview and falsely labeling it CRT.

And it is this critical praxis that is the cause for many parents pulling their kids out of school. While they may not articulate it clearly, that is a good reason.
Nope.  No K-12 schoolchildren are learning "critical praxis."  They can't articulate it because it is not there.

Objections to raising a child's awareness on most any subject is a poor reason to pull your kids out of school.
At face value, this statement might have some merit.

But when "raising awareness/consciousness" means training children to see oppression of non-whites by whites in pretty much everything, with the goal of tearing down the alleged systems of oppression, then your statement doesn't seem so innocent.
Bullshit. We are talking about public schools generally, where 4 out of every 5 teachers are non-Hispanic White.  78% of school board members are White.  While I am sure you can find some kooky teacher somewhere preaching universal oppression by the whites- I refuse to believe that public schools are generally teaching that all minorities are oppressed in everything they do and that the American establishment must go.  Trumpists think that way but in public schools,  I think the opposite is true- that minority kids more often get a distorted view about racial oppression at home and get a more balanced and empowered  and pro-establishment viewpoint at school.

I think you are way out of touch with the reality of public schools.

Raising children's consciousness about racism is a necessary part of American learning. I don't know how you teach American history, society, literature, etc. without raising consciousness about racism in America.
There is the game. You are misusing the term racism in order to insert your foreign definition into the conversation.
Nonsense.  I'll rely on Mirriam-Webster:

RACISM [noun]

1: a belief that race is a fundamental determinant of human traits and capacities and that racial differences produce an inherent superiority of a particular race
2a: the systemic oppression of a racial group to the social, economic, and political advantage of another 
2b: a political or social system founded on racism and designed to execute its principles

Please explain how Mirriam-Webster's definition of racism seems "foreign" to your and how your definition of racism differs.

I have no objection to teaching (high school) children how to identify the means of oppression and how to non-violently dismantle those mean.
Is the Constitution a system of oppression?
No.   I learned in public schools that the US Constitution only empowers the US Govt in very limited ways, that the Bill of Rights is all constraints on the Government and not on the people....  Are you saying that this is no longer taught in public schools?

Trump and Republicans are the ones who view the Constitution as an instrument of oppression to the extent that it forbids the Trump dictatorship Republicans now actively and almost exclusively seek.  Even so, I doubt even pro-Trump educators are teaching kids to tear up the Constitution.

I could not have been more clear on this, I don't know why you are pretending otherwise. I said:

"....you are mis-characterizing anti-racist speech as CRT."
"Anti-racist" as defined by who?
Since we used Mirriam-Webster to define racism, let's stick with that.

anti-racist
variants: or ANTI-RACISM
Definition of anti-racist

opposed to RACISM


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And it is this critical praxis that is the cause for many parents pulling their kids out of school. While they may not articulate it clearly, that is a good reason.
Nope. No K-12 schoolchildren are learning "critical praxis." They can't articulate it because it is not there.
I did not say they were "learning" critical praxis. They are engaged in praxis.


We are talking about public schools generally, where 4 out of every 5 teachers are non-Hispanic White. 78% of school board members are White. While I am sure you can find some kooky teacher somewhere preaching universal oppression by the whites- I refuse to believe that public schools are generally teaching that all minorities are oppressed in everything they do and that the American establishment must go.
An official resolution adopted by the NEA:

"RESOLUTION I-52: WHITE SUPREMACY CULTURE
The National Education Association believes that, in order to achieve racial and social justice, educators must acknowledge the existence of White supremacy culture as a primary root cause of institutional racism, structural racism, and White privilege. Additionally, the Association believes that the norms, standards, and organizational structures manifested in White supremacy culture perpetually exploit and oppress people of color and serve as detriments to racial justice. Further, the invisible racial benefits of White privilege, which are automatically conferred irrespective of wealth, gender, and other factors, severely limit opportunities for people of color and impede full achievement of racial and social justice. Therefore, the Association will actively advocate for social and educational strategies fostering the eradication of institutional racism and White privilege perpetuated by White supremacy culture."

The benefits of white privilege are automatically conferred and perpetually exploit and oppress people of color. And we can't forget that the NEA pushes for teaching that racism is an historically rooted system of power hierarchies based on race — infused in our institutions, policies and culture — that benefits white people and hurts people of color.

Are you saying that the educational strategies of the largest teacher union in the nation are not being taught in public schools?


There is the game. You are misusing the term racism in order to insert your foreign definition into the conversation.
Nonsense. I'll rely on Mirriam-Webster:

RACISM [noun]

1: a belief that race is a fundamental determinant of human traits and capacities and that racial differences produce an inherent superiority of a particular race
2a: the systemic oppression of a racial group to the social, economic, and political advantage of another 
2b: a political or social system founded on racism and designed to execute its principles

Please explain how Mirriam-Webster's definition of racism seems "foreign" to your and how your definition of racism differs.
I assume you are aware that definitions 2a and 2b were not added until June of 2020. However, there was at least one place we could already find the idea that racism should not be defined in restrictive terms of individual conscious thoughts and actions, but should rather be viewed as structural systems of oppression. And that place would be the writings of Derrick Bell, decades before Merriam-Webster hopped on the bandwagon.


anti-racist
variants: or ANTI-RACISM
Definition of anti-racist

: opposed to RACISM
Then defining anti-racism is entirely dependent on how you define racism. Prior to June of 2020, anti-racism would have strictly meant being opposed to individual prejudiced thoughts and actions. But now racism is being redefined in a way that is fundamentally the same as how Derrick Bell already articulated it. And since Bell saw racism as dependent on institutions and social practices, he would probably have agreed that anti-racism requires dismantling those entities rather than simply being opposed to conscious actions or beliefs of individuals.

So are public schools basing their definition of anti-racism on the original definition of racism, or the newly added definition as of June 2020?
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I'll remind you that the OP thesis was:  "parents are taking their kids out of public school because public schools are teaching CRT"

Now, your latest post doesn't even mention CRT- you've moved on to your dissatisfactions with the definitions of racism generally.  I'll take that drop as concession. 

Critical Race Theory is a fairly sophisticated legal critique of 20th Liberalism and  not being taught in public schools- parents who say so are responding to a piece of false political propaganda that originated on FOX News last year and repeated on Republican News sites, sometimes at a rate of 12 per day.

Are you saying that the educational strategies of the largest teacher union in the nation are not being taught in public schools?
The NEA doesn't dictate school curriculums any more than the United Auto Workers dictate what's on the production line or the Teamsters dictate UPS routes.  The ultimate authority for school curriculum lies with state governments who traditionally leave most of the details to local school districts and school boards.  Then principles, dean, and other school mgmt, then teachers.

Even so, the whole notion that racism has been deeply embedded from the beginning into American culture, institutions, and politics is

  • true
  • a legitimate and valuable topic of discussion for older schoolchildren (I'd say grades 10-12)
    • and as such, a topic that ought not to be banned or criminalized by Republicans in state legislatures or local govt.
  • consistent with the ideologies of civil rights and anti-racism
  • not a worthy reason to isolate your children from the benefits of public education
  • not CRT 
    • (which is really my only point and it feels like we've covered it)

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I'll remind you that the OP thesis was:  "parents are taking their kids out of public school because public schools are teaching CRT"

Now, your latest post doesn't even mention CRT- you've moved on to your dissatisfactions with the definitions of racism generally.  I'll take that drop as concession. 

Critical Race Theory is a fairly sophisticated legal critique of 20th Liberalism and  not being taught in public schools- parents who say so are responding to a piece of false political propaganda that originated on FOX News last year and repeated on Republican News sites, sometimes at a rate of 12 per day.
Your latest post did not even address my point about "racism" being defined in a way that mirrors how Derrick Bell articulated it. I'll take that drop as a concession that racism - and thus anti-racism - has been recently redefined to resemble Derrick Bell's understanding of racism/anti-racism rather than the traditional dictionary definition. And it is this understanding of racism/anti-racism that mirrors Bell's articulation that is being taught in public schools.

The NEA doesn't dictate school curriculums any more than the United Auto Workers dictate what's on the production line or the Teamsters dictate UPS routes.  The ultimate authority for school curriculum lies with state governments who traditionally leave most of the details to local school districts and school boards.  Then principles, dean, and other school mgmt, then teachers.
I did not ask whether or not school curriculums are dictated by the NEA. What I'm asking is, do you believe that the cited racial justice materials being promoted by the NEA are being used by public schools? I have a hard time believing that there are no teachers, outside of perhaps a few quacks, using and teaching these materials.