The Monday Morning Teaser

This week I responded to a slice of conservative spam: The Heritage Foundation was offering me its free e-book (well, e-pamphlet, really) on how to spot and combat critical race theory. I had to get it: I keep accusing conservatives of turning “critical race theory” into a pejorative term with no actual meaning, and here was a right-wing think tank offering to tell me what it means. I have to read stuff like this just to keep myself honest (which is probably why I keep getting conservative spam).

The result is this week’s featured post: “What Conservatives Tell Themselves About Critical Race Theory”. The short version: When they feel obligated to define “critical race theory” and attach it to actual quotes from the people supposedly promoting it, conservatives serve a pretty thin soup that is nothing at all like those anti-CRT laws that talk about making white people feel ashamed of their whiteness and blaming them for the crimes of their ancestors. In a nutshell, CRT means teaching people about systemic racism.

Imagine my horror. Innocent children in our public schools are being taught that whites have advantages in our society! Clearly we need to storm the school boards and get this stopped.

Anyway, that post should be out before 10 EDT.

In the weekly summary, Democrats appear to be creeping towards the finish line on the Build Back Better plan. It’s going to look small compared to earlier proposals, but if you’d described it to me on January 5 (when the election of Senators Warnock and Ossoff gave Democrats control of the Senate) I think I’d have been happy. Once something passes, Democrats will have to work on their marketing so that voters realize how much has been accomplished rather than focusing only on what has been left out. Congress has cited Steve Bannon for criminal contempt, moving the case to Merrick Garland’s in-box. The Trumpist spirit is unleashing incredible craziness in Republican primaries, and also in Evangelical churches. And Covid numbers continue to drop everywhere but here in the Northeast.

That should be out sometime after noon.

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  • Ron Malzer  On October 25, 2021 at 12:08 pm


    A Wisconsin state senator actually provided a written list of 89 specific concepts that he argued should be banned from public school curricula. Please use as fodder for your efforts.

    And thanks for your extremely thoughtful and well-written Weekly Sift.

    *Ron Malzer (**he/his)* *Freelance writer*

    *UU La Crosse Member* *cell: 608.498.9002*

  • carolallen43  On October 25, 2021 at 2:18 pm

    COVID is very high in Idaho. Land of the craziest of the crazies.

    • Anonymous  On October 25, 2021 at 8:27 pm

      Your comment reminded me of a wonderful book:
      Educated, by Tara Westover
      She was raised in rural Idaho. Her parents didn’t send her to school, but she managed to get herself into Brigham Young University anyway, and eventually went on to get a PhD.
      Her description of her childhood includes a bunch of “crazy,” but she is a wonderful writer, and her description of her transition from rural Idaho to Harvard is amazing and wonderful.

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