What good American would disagree that “black lives matter”? Who could be opposed to “diversity, equity, and inclusion”? Who doesn’t believe in “social justice”?
These are powerful, generation-defining terms, and millions of Americans put in them their hopes for a more perfect union. But somewhere along the way, the terms were hijacked by a radical movement of racist Marxists, who redefined those terms to mean all the things they believe in, even as they redefined “white supremacy” and “racism” to mean all the things they oppose.
It was a rhetorical trick worthy of con artists. But it was only a matter of time before Americans of all races, creeds, and political persuasions started to realize that they’d been conned.
That was the significance of last week’s elections in Virginia, which sent shock waves across the country. In a solidly Democratic state that Joe Biden carried by more than ten points just a year ago, Republicans swept the statewide ballots. Suburban parents finally got fed up with the heavy-handed progressive policies inflicted on their children over the past year.
Establishment Democrats stared at each other nervously and realized that the left wing of the party was ruining their electoral prospects. But the left wing went on the offensive, accusing Republicans of “weaponizing” critical race theory and complaining that schools are just teaching the “true history of racism in America” and “addressing inequality and social justice.” The multimillionaire sports journalist Jemele Hill accounted for Virginia’s election of a black and a Hispanic candidate to two of the three statewide offices on the ballot with her usual incisiveness: “This country just loves white supremacy.”
Despite the denials we now hear in Democratic state media such as CNN and the New York Times, public elementary schools across the country have indeed been actively indoctrinating children to see the society — and themselves — through the prism of race. As Christopher Rufo and others have reported, schoolchildren have been asked to rank themselves according to their “power and privilege” and separate themselves into oppressors and oppressed according to racial caste. In Buffalo, an “equity-based instructional strategy” has led to lesson plans that teach that “all white people play a part in systemic racism.” These are just two examples. Progressives deny that critical race theory is being taught in school districts, but examples of this virulent new racism being taught under cover of “diversity, equity, and inclusion” are too many to count.
Everyday Americans are starting to realize that behind the banner of “equity,” the radicals are advancing a racist version of Marxism, one that seeks to replace America’s competitive melting pot with a caste system. The first step is to indoctrinate white schoolchildren to think of themselves as members of a permanently penitential caste.
Nor does the indoctrination stop at teaching kids to think in racist terms, for the racism is just a veil for the latest iteration of Marxist socialism. Ibram X. Kendi, the chief theorist and popularizer of the movement, has said so explicitly:
Obviously, the idea that whites are an inherently guilty race in an inherently racist country that must adopt race-based socialism to atone for its past sins is not just “teaching the history of racism.” It is Marxist indoctrination, meant to pave the way for a pervasive system of wealth redistribution — and the arbitrary totalitarian power that such a system requires.
As is always the case with totalitarian movements, this one entails the enforcement of ideological purity and the persecution of dissent, and Americans are now seeing that, too. People are being persecuted at elite universities and news organizations for merely questioning any aspect of the race-Marxist orthodoxy.
The gigantic obstacle standing in the way of this twisted and dystopian vision of “equity” is none other than the principle of “equality.” Enshrined in the Equal Protection Clause of the Constitution, the principle of equality before the law requires that the same laws be applied to everyone in the same way.
Never yet fully fulfilled, equality is nonetheless the principle that countless generations of Americans aspired to and fought for as they sought to create “a more perfect Union.” Along with the colorblind meritocracy for which it stands, it is the principle that has made America a beacon to the nations of the world.
Equality before the law is all too often the very thing the new race-Marxists mean when they talk about “white supremacy” and “racism.” Consider how vehemently they dismiss the ideal of “colorblindness.” That indeed is the main point of Kendi’s milestone work, How to Be an Antiracist: “One either allows racial inequalities to persevere, as a racist, or confronts racial inequities, as an antiracist.” Therefore, if you are merely “not racist” you are in fact “racist.”
In order to be “antiracist,” you must fight to reverse “racial inequities” through racial “equity.” And what does that require? It requires recognizing the inherent racism of whiteness. It requires recognizing that you can’t be “racist” against white people, given their oppressive history and current power. It requires treating people differently according to their race. In short, this new ideology of antiracism requires you to be racist.
Our greatest protection from this assault on our values, way of life, and aspirations for a better world is the Constitution and its principle of equality. Lots of people are now complaining about the race-Marxist agenda, but that agenda is getting implemented every day, across the country, in ways large and small, as the radicals patiently chip away at the Equal Protection Clause.
Among the few organizations actually fighting back at the point of attack is the Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty, which recently launched its Equality under the Law Project to defend victims of woke discrimination. Under president Rick Esenberg, WILL has scored one victory after another in courts across the country. But for every such victory, dozens of violations of the Equal Protection Clause go unchallenged, virtually every one a victory for race-Marxism.
Read the full article at National Review.