California is engineering woke children
After reading the American Thinker article about California’s plan to teach school children Aztec worship chants, I found the California Department of Education website, freshly updated on March 8th. The “woke” curriculum it outlines disturbs me, and I am betting most California parents aren’t aware of the radical direction their children’s education is about to take.
The literature specifies an all-encompassing proposed curriculum centered on ethnic studies. Downloading and reading the various PDFs was illuminating. I used the word “woke,” above, to describe what I found. I realize the word has different meanings to different segments of our society. For the progressive left, it’s what they’re after. For conservatives, it’s the opposite.
Besides its original meaning as the past participle of “wake,” the term was first elevated to significance within the African American community, where it came to symbolize that one paid homage to the concepts called social and racial justice. These are terms that are never very coherently defined, just accepted and broadly disseminated, especially on college campuses. They are key components of Critical Race Theory (“CRT”), which seems to be an excuse to demand white guilt and self-deprecation, and to justify hating those of us born with the wrong skin color, who are seen as “privileged.” This is blatant racism, yet it is the structure underpinning leftist philosophy.
For those of us on the conservative side of the coin, “woke” is seen as a derisive term when applied to broad society, and CRT is seen for the sham it is. My hope is that far fewer members of society consider themselves “woke” than not but it’s hard to tell these days. For those who reject the “woke” label, I mean that they still look at reality, exercise common sense and, in terms of education, intend to guide their children towards a life where equality of opportunity trumps manufactured, Marxist equity, with the white-guilt “gimme” culture it engenders.
California’s proposed curriculum includes every grade in the ethnic studies net. The first sentence in the overview is: “Ethnic studies teaching is grounded in the belief that education can be a tool for transformation, social, economic, and political change, and liberation.” If you think your kindergartener isn’t going to be snared into the web of wokeism, think again.
By line 78, teachers are told to evaluate their own implicit biases. It asks teachers to “engage in activities that allow them to unpack their own identities, privilege, marginalization, lived experiences, and understanding and experience of race, culture, and social justice while they are also learning about the experiences of others.”
By line 105, we’re told that most kids' books “feature white characters…and that characters of color or LGBTQ+ are marginalized as stereotypes.” By line 214, it has the children advocating for social transformation in the community. It makes specific suggestions regarding using projects designed to instill a “sense of civic efficacy and empowerment in youth.” For example, they should convince the registrar of voters that there need to be more polling places in “underrepresented communities.”
In essence, this curriculum works to turn children into social change advocates spouting CRT as if it were reality. It touts “intersectionality” and demands that the students become advocates in their community, and build solidarity with “oppressed groups.”
The negative assumptions about our society made in this document (and the more detailed ones that follow it) glibly ignore history. Instead, the documents recommend material meant to denigrate people based on being the wrong race, elevate the “culturally diverse” population, and replace our outdated “cultural norms” with new ones, more relevant to the equity model.
Applying this tactic to primary education will cement this negative, racist “theory” in the minds of our vulnerable, impressionable children. No good can come of it.
We who happen to be white, are going to be defined as the oppressors. Achievements and history will be seen through a distorted lens. A “theory” that is untrue will be deemed fact. Inevitably, it will lead to white kids hating themselves, kids from other races hating the white kids, as well as those of any race but their own. A new apartheid will form, one that will violently destroy our society.
As parents, I suggest you object to this as quickly as possible. It will most probably become the rule guiding your children’s education anyway, given the make-up of our state government. At that point, you have choices to make. Get involved, talk to your children’s teachers, object at specific, local, issue-by-issue levels, and question the assumptions. Run for school board and attack it that way. Sign the Newsom recall and work to elect a Republican of conscience to the governorship, then make sure this issue is addressed as fast as possible. Your only other option is to absent your family from the system, which is an inordinately expensive option, to be sure.
A note from American Thinker
Sally Zelikovsky has created a newsletter to help inform people about actions they can take in 2021. Her information about the California bill is as follows:
Even though the deadline to comment was Fraidy at noon, I’ve been told people should inundate them with comments anyway.
Comments should be submitted to the SBE mailbox at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Copy and paste this in the Subject line:
Copy and paste this message:
Dear SBE Board Members:
I strongly oppose the Ethnic Studies Model Curriculum ‘that advocates for the “decolonization” of American society and elevates Aztec religious symbolism’. This curriculum, while purporting to “challenge racist, bigoted, discriminatory, imperialist/colonial beliefs” is anti-American, anti-Judeo/Christian, racist and divisive. Vote No. We The People do not want this to be taught to our children in our schools.
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