Critical Race Theory, or CRT, is the study of systemic racism and how it relates to society, law and economics. The subject began in liberal universities in the 1980s, and has gained a lot of traction over the last three decades, as more attention has been brought to the rampant racism in American society. CRT has since been adopted by a large number of colleges, and is now offered as an undergraduate course at many progressive universities. However, CRT is yet to make it into school curricula, despite the demands of many progressive groups urging the states and Federal government to make it mandatory for young students.
In the 21st century, in an increasingly multicultural and diverse world, it is more important than ever that we are aware of details of racism, privilege and oppression, and how these govern how we should act. CRT examines the historical and current oppressions and exploits of various groups in society, and how these have contributed to today’s disparities in society. Without an awareness of the imbalance of power between the races in America, people do not know how to behave appropriately in order to show respect for, and not to offend, people of color.
Young children need to be aware of white privilege, and the responsibilities that this places on white people to provide resources and opportunities to people of color. People of color also need to be aware of their oppression and victimization in society, so that they are assertive enough to demand their rights and reparations for past wrongs. Without an education in CRT, many children will grow up believing that all races should be held to the same standards, despite the glaring inequities in society and the horrific past wrongs that need to be righted.
In order to function as a multicultural, diverse society, we need to be more racially aware. We need to raise our children to recognize their place in society, as either privileged or victimized, and then to work to correct these disparities. Children need to be aware of microaggressions, and that inappropriate behaviors, phrases, mannerisms and references can trigger oppressed groups and remind them of the horrors that their ancestors endured at the hands of their white oppressors. In order to progress as a society, the feelings of victimized peoples need to be nurtured and protected, because it is only through this healing process that America can begin to correct its dark and oppressive past.