Harrisburg, Pa – As a parent and lawmaker, Pennsylvania state Rep. Donna Bullock (D-Philadelphia) welcomes the teaching of Critical Race Theory in the classroom.
In response to proposed legislation to ban Critical Race Theory in Pennsylvania schools, Bullock said, “It will prohibit our teachers from discussing issues that I think our children, our students want to talk about and want to move forward with; so as a parent and legislator, I’m very much against this.”
Her statement was made during an interview with CBS21 News. Bullock said that she finds HB 1532 irresponsible, racist, sexist, and self-serving.
Pennsylvania state Reps. Russ Diamond and Barbara Gleim recently introduced HB 1532, the Teaching Racial and Universal Equality Act (TRUE Act), an act “providing for restrictions on racist and sexist concepts, for contracts, for penalty and for private cause of action.” According to Rep. Diamond, the proposed legislation would defund schools that adopt critical race theory in Pennsylvania.
The issue has caused a divide in many communities. Some teachers are protesting the newly passed state laws that ban critical race theory or diversity curriculums, and more than 5,100 teachers have signed a pledge saying they will continue to teach critical race theory and plan to violate the new laws. The American Federation of Teachers president Randi Weingarten recently said the union is preparing litigation and has a legal defense fund to defend teachers who break the new laws. Weingarten promised to fight “culture warriors” who attempt to limit lessons on racism and discrimination by labeling it as critical race theory.
The federal government has incentivized school boards to adopt portions of critical race theory.Recently, the U.S. Department of Education proposed two curriculum priorities for schools applying for grants through the federal American History and Civics Education programs. According to freedomworks.org, the first priority mandates schools “incorporate teaching and learning practices that reflect the diversity, identities, and experiences of all students” and “create inclusive, supportive, and identity-safe learning environments.” The second priority asks for the curriculum to include a strong focus on “news literacy” as a means to “meaningfully participate in our democracy and distinguish fact from misinformation.”
Bill sponsor state Rep. Diamond provided insight of the legislation, stating, “This Marxist agenda, whether it’s called critical race theory, social-emotional learning, or any other name—is little more than a direct attempt to undermine everything that makes America great. Identifying and categorizing students by their inherent traits, and treating them differently, or having them treat each other differently as a result does not serve the needs of our Commonwealth.”
“While it is important to teach students the unvarnished truth about race throughout American history, our schools need to focus instead on how far we’ve come in providing for equality under the law. The purveyors of this agenda are institutionalizing the soft bigotry of low expectations and no Pennsylvania parent, teacher, school administrator, or legislator should stand for it. My legislation would defund any school which includes this anti-American tripe as part of its curriculum.”