“Thus says the Lord of hosts: Render true judgments, show kindness and mercy to one another; 10 do not oppress the widow, the orphan, the alien, or the poor; and do not devise evil in your hearts against one another. -Zechariah 7:9-10
Critical Race Theory proponents would certainly agree with American author and Nobel Prize winner, William Faulkner, when he wrote, “The past is never dead. It’s not even past.” We may remove Confederate statues, change names on university buildings and take to the streets in large numbers to protest the killing of George Floyd, but what has really changed? CRT might say “very little.” Take, for example, the voting rights bill sponsored by the late congressman, John Lewis. It lies in state in Congress. Meanwhile, although no voting fraud has been found in the last Presidential election, some states have taken measures to make it more difficult for some people to vote. Critical Race Theory would ask, “Why?” and, “For Whom?”
CRT supporters would have us face, and attempt to ameliorate, what they see as institutionalized racism that perpetuates a racial caste system, relegating people of color to the bottom tiers. Simply put, CRT states that U.S. social institutions (e.g., the criminal justice system, education system, labor market, housing market, and healthcare system) are laced with racism embedded in laws, regulations, rules, and procedures that lead to differential outcomes by race.
Many Americans are not able to separate their identity as an individual American from the social institutions that govern us—they perceive themselves as the system. Consequently, they interpret calling social institutions racist as calling each of them racist, personally. There are also people who may recognize America’s racist past but have bought into the false narrative that the U.S. is now an equitable democracy. They are simply unwilling to remove the blind spot obscuring the fact that America is still not on a level playing field for everyone.