Restore Academic Excellence and Drop Highly Corrosive DEI Program

Restore Academic Excellence and Drop Highly Corrosive DEI Program

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On November 25, 2019, the Carmel Clay School (CCS) Board formally presented “Equity & Inclusion” as part of its strategic plan. On December 14, 2020, the Board introduced the school system’s first “Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Officer.” We, the undersigned parents and residents of Hamilton County, firmly believe that these steps will have disastrous implications for the students and staff at CCS.

The CCS Board and its new DEI officer adamantly deny that their plans are related to Critical Race Theory. This is misleading as the new DEI officer publicly supports teaching about “structures and systemic matters,” intersectionality, microaggressions, and implicit bias. She also promotes a book for District-wide training called Me and White Supremacy. Her behavior reflects the essence of Critical Race Theory, but what exactly is it?

Critical Race Theory began in 1920s Europe as a form of Marxist thought called Critical Theory. The movement later migrated to the United States and ultimately morphed into Critical Race Theory. What Critical Race Theory does is adapt the original goal of Marxism to modern America. It replaces class warfare, which was a dismal failure everywhere it was tried, with racial warfare. As scholar Christopher Rufo puts it, the proponents of Critical Race Theory "seek to essentially deconstruct all of the principles around the Western canon of law, around rationality itself, around objectivity, around science, around math, they want to essentially destroy all of those to reveal what they believe is the essence, which is a kind of racial power struggle." Moreover, they believe "that the United States was founded on racism, slavery and oppression, and that our constitutional structure, the words of the [United States] Declaration [of Independence], and even the law as it exists today are merely a cover story for racial oppression and dominance hegemony."

Critical Race Theory is fast taking control over most major institutions in the US, including tragically our schools. The individuals who developed the language of Critical Race Theory were nothing if not stealthy in intentionally using pleasing terms like "diversity, "inclusion," and "equity" in which to cloak their radical vision for America. However, what is essential to understand is that "equity" is vastly different from equality, which is rejected by critical race theorists as cover for white supremacy and oppression. That is, DEI rejects the concept that "all men are created equal" as enshrined in the Declaration of Independence.

There are several reasons why DEI, as a form of Critical Race Theory, should never have been introduced into CCS:

· It treats people as categories rather than unique individuals and so represents a betrayal of what the civil rights movement so valiantly fought for, which is that every person be judged solely on the content of their character. DEI places students in rigid categories and passes judgment based on them rather than individual attributes. So, for example, a black person can never be considered racist, and a white person will always be considered privileged. Other groups are affected as well. Jews, who are the target of 60% of religious hate crimes despite being only 2% of the population, and who have millions of brown and black skinned individuals within their ranks, must only be considered "privileged" or "white."

· It intentionally distorts American history. Children must learn that our history includes the terrible story of slavery and the long and difficult road to achieving racial equality. But DEI promotes a view that deliberately ignores the remarkable, arguably unique, progress that America has made over time in living up to its founding vision. DEI’s twisted version of history, as exemplified by the 1619 project, has been debunked by historians across the political spectrum and is designed to plant the seeds of self-hatred in our children.

· DEI ultimately results in suppression of free speech and Cancel Culture for those with differing views. Unfortunately we are now witnessing this in our community. What our schools should be emphasizing is that freedom of speech is a fundamental American value that must be cherished and protected.

· While DEI purports to bring people together, it actually leads to increased suspicion, resentment, and schisms among students. This is because it promotes a Darwinian environment that pits one student against the other, the oppressors and oppressed. This cannot help but increase tensions in the community rather than promote meaningful dialogue.

· DEI is big business and will inevitably burden Carmel taxpayers with increasing costs and divert precious funds from where they are most needed. In fact, the City of Carmel is already considering shifting $130,000 in this year’s budget to pay for diversity and inclusion training for all its employees.

· DEI assumes automatically that any differences in achievement between racial or ethnic groups are attributable to racism. This is demeaning, counterproductive, and inculcates a sense of victimization. Instead, students should be learning what the best evidence shows, that nearly every American can achieve success through the presence of a stable home life, measurable educational achievement, and working up the ladder.

DEI is rapidly infiltrating neighboring school districts, forcing parents to organize and defend their children against this noxious ideology. We will never let this happen in our school system. The CCS Board has shown an arrogant disregard and contempt for its parents. This will not stand.

We demand that CCS focus its efforts solely on providing academic excellence for all its students regardless of color or creed and drop completely the highly corrosive DEI program from its schools.

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