Lt. Governor-elect Winsome Sears (R-Va.) disputed a CNN host’s assertion that critical race theory (CRT) was not in Virginia school curriculums.
Sears is the first black woman elected to statewide office in history. Sears has repeatedly said she did not seek election to make history but acknowledged the importance of serving as a role model.
She has been an outspoken opponent of CRT because it teaches children that American institutions are inherently racist. Sears and her running mate, Governor-elect Glenn Youngkin (R-Va.) probably won more votes from parents concerned about CRT being taught in schools than any other single issue raised during the campaign. Democrat Terry McAuliffe’s loss to Youngkin shocked the party and invigorated Republican strategists.
Even an old school Liberal like Bill Maher opposes teaching third-grade children they are oppressors because of the color of their skin. He abhors the idea of schools separating children into groups of “oppressors” and “oppressed.”
“Do kids even know what these terms mean?” Maher asked CNN host Chris Cuomo during a Nov. 17 broadcast.
Another CNN host, Dana Bash, tried to tell Sears that CRT was not part of the curriculum in Virginia schools. The new Lt. Gov. didn’t let it stand.
“You opposed critical race theory taught in schools which I should say is not part of Virginia’s curriculum,” Bash told Sears. “You did say, though, that the good and the bad of American history should be taught. And, we should also tell viewers you’re a former vice president of the Virginia Board of Education.”
“[I]t is part of the curriculum,” Sears countered. “It is weaved in and out of the curriculum.”
She said although it may not be explicitly labeled CRT, the principles have been incrementally included in the standard curriculum.
“In fact, in 2015, former Governor [Terry] McAuliffe and his State Board of Education had information on how to teach it, so it’s weaved in,” Sears carried on. “So, you know. It’s semantics, but it’s weaved in.”
Sears added it is important to teach all of history because the only way to learn from past mistakes is to study them with open eyes. The new Lt. Gov. pointed to record numbers of marriages and prosperity among Blacks between the Civil War and World War II. She mused that many people talk about Black wealth destroyed during the Tulsa, Okla. race riots of the 1920s but never wonder how such wealth was amassed by them. Sears credits a desire for education that followed their emancipation.
“Education lifted my father out of poverty when he came to America with only $1.75,” Sears noted. “Education lifted me, because I had to find my own way in this world, and education will lift all of us.”
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