The 13 months that separate Trump’s anti-CRT executive order from Terry McAuliffe’s defeat in the recent Virginia gubernatorial race saw the harvesting of political fruit produced by an amazingly accelerated educational process. Across the steep political divide, a nation came to so despise the previously obscure little package of academic nomenclature — critical race theory — that Blue Virginians found it necessary to punish the politician who lied about it.
Just five months earlier, the woke emcee of the conservative Southern Baptist Convention, James Merritt, who was lagging behind the learning of most Americans, insulted more up-to-speed Baptist messengers who called for the rejection of CRT at their national convention: “If some people were as passionate about the gospel as they are about [opposing] critical race theory, we’d win this world to Christ tomorrow.” Black best-selling author and Southern Baptist messenger Carol Swain was thwarted by Woke Baptist platform controllers when she tried to say what voters in Virginia said to McAuliffe, a message the title of her hot-of-the-press book captures — Black Eye For America: How Critical Race Theory Is Burning Down the House.
Similar treatment befell fellow best-selling black author Voddie Baucham, who’d been a star within the now fragmenting Evangelical Industrial Complex that included the Southern Baptist Convention, the Presbyterian Church of America, Desiring God Ministries, and Tim Keller’s Gospel Coalition. Blowback from his rejection of the false “Hands Up! Don’t Shoot!” racist reading of Michael Brown’s death in Ferguson, Missouri, made Baucham a persona non grata among the white men who gate-keep for the virtue-signaling racial reconciliation agenda of the Evangelical Industrial Complex.
But post-Virginia, the days of straightforward and sanguine public estimations of CRT are over. From ABC to CNN to MSNBC to northern Virginia, mainstream and Democrat Party voices sing from the sheet music McAuliffe’s defeat delivered — “CRT is not real!” or “CRT is not being taught!” For Republicans, the inclusion of anti-CRT protestations among conservative bona fides has become mandatory. Just before McAuliffe’s defeat, Gov. Kay Ivey of Alabama tweeted: “We have permanently BANNED Critical Race Theory in Alabama. We’re focused on teaching our children how to read and write, not HATE.”
Ivey declares “There’s no critical race theory in our schools” in a currently running TV ad.
Unfortunately, the facts on the ground show that Ivey’s happy pronouncements are premature. CRT is not a newly sprung cultural and political weed controlled (much less destroyed) with a spray or two of Alabama gubernatorial agreement with the outraged parents of Old Dominion or anywhere else. What spewed from the mouths of radicalized 5th-grade teachers and the policy-setting dictates of K-12 school board members in Virginia are products of a nationwide industry that boasts a massive and efficient infrastructure: the state-funded public and federal student loan-dependent private colleges and universities of America. The underground supply chain that delivered the dogmas of CRT into the minds and hearts of Virginia’s grade-schoolers may have been exposed but it was not uprooted.
Those roots reach back almost half a century to the work of law professors Derrick Bell and his younger protégé Richard Delgado. From neo-Marxist raw materials served up by Antonio Gramsci, Herbert Marcuse, and the Frankfurt school, Bell and Delgado concocted and then contributed to critical race theory.
CRT spread first through law schools, which explains Judge Regina Chu’s recent invocation of the CRT dogma “implicit bias” in her instructions to jurors in the Kim Potter trial. From law schools, CRT took root in departments of education, where it continues to shape the psyches of the nation’s public and private school teachers, of which a handful were exposed in the run-up to the watershed election in Virginia.
Since Derrick Bell’s death in 2011, his younger protégé and CRT co-founder continues to carry the torch of revolutionary change. In 2017, Delgado and Jean Stefancic, his wife and fellow law professor, published one of the handiest little primers for budding neo-Marxists you’ll ever lay your hands upon —Critical Race Theory: An Introduction. Now guess who employs Delgado and Stefancic? Yep. Both are longtime tenured academics living on the largesse of Kay Ivey’s constituents at the University of Alabama. Roll Tide? Yes, indeed, the CRT tide rolls with taxpayer underwritten power and prowess in Tuscaloosa into the brains of future lawyers and grade-school principals poised to lead the schools and preside over the courts of Alabama and the rest of America.
What happened in Georgia could happen in Alabama soon if Red State conservatives fix blame on the previous president for bad outcomes manufactured with machine-like precision in the very schools they pay for and to which they surrender the souls of their children. The “bluing” of America commenced long before Trump traded Ivana for Marla and Marla for Melania.
To make good on Ivey’s premature announcement of victory over CRT will require multiple applications of the same sort of anti-Marxist weed-killer applied in Virginia — the repudiation of revolutionary words. Totalitarian movements of the left and the right always depend upon the deft employment of propaganda. From the Jacobins, Bolsheviks, Nazis, and Mao to the Old Dominion branch of the DNC — words work revolution into the inner workings of receptive minds. Yet, somehow, some combination of Trump, Rufo, Lindsay, Baucham, Swain, and that immigrant mother and Mao-survivor in Virginia rendered the combination of the words “critical” and “race” and “theory” toxic to the body politic.
Unfortunately, current revolutionary language is drawn from a large lexicon. That includes the next three words up for besmirching. You already know what they are — diversity, equity, and inclusion — the holy trinity of Woke Church catechesis. Attempts to kill CRT that leave these words are doomed to fail. Each may be candidates for future rehabilitation and redeployment in polite conversation, but that must come later. For now, they are carriers of CRT, period.
Unless and until these words are ripped down from the placards of colleges and universities across America, the Virginia variant of the totalitarian cultural pandemic shall continue to course through the courts and grade schools of this country. Governor Ivey may not understand this, but we can be sure that that Alabama taxpayers’ employee Richard Delgado does.