by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
A friend of mine told me a true apocryphal story. He is an old-fashioned “liberal” and a strong advocate of public education.
The Covid-19 lockdowns left him additional time to inconspicuously sit in on his sixth-grade son’s online classes. One afternoon, he observed an assignment in an English class in which all the white students were required to place their arms beside a brown paper bag.
The teacher, a white woman, asked if they noticed a difference in color between their skin and the brown paper bag. The white students verbally assented. The teacher then asked if the color of the bag looked close to the skin color of some classmates who identify as black.
The teacher then announced: “If your skin color is different from the color of the paper bag, then you are part of an American problem known as ‘systemic racism’ that does irreparable harm to all black and brown people. Further, if you identify as white, you enjoy something called ‘white privilege,’ which means you are practicing racism every day without knowing it.” The teacher then went on to ask the class if they had ever heard the term “reparations.”
Out of some sense of visceral paternal protection, my friend slammed down his son’s computer and told him to go to his room. He told me that he stood there, shaking with incredulity.
I told him his son was being held hostage by a new national philosophy called critical race theory, a moral eugenics program. His son was being re-socialized to be an enemy of his family, himself, and the state. The murder of his son’s soul was taking place before his eyes.
At age 12, this young man had committed no egregious harm against any black person, yet he was being taught to feel that he was the cause of all harms inflicted on black people.