In case you thought it was only morally deficient journalists acting like critical race theory (CRT) is nonexistent, think again. A high school English teacher whose school was slammed by Fox News host Tucker Carlson has joined the smear parade — and in no place more suitable than NBC News.
In about 800 words, educator Anne Lutz Fernandez, a former marketer and author who teaches at a prestigious public school in Connecticut, calls bluff on Americans concerned about curricula that has become influenced by neo-Marxist CRT (which curiously is not mentioned verbatim in the entire article).
The title of Fernandez’s op-ed is “America’s school teachers aren’t the Marxist cabal Fox News keeps depicting,” with the skeptical subtitle, “Evidence abounds that educators tend to avoid rather than dive into politically hot topics. And such hesitancy has consequences.”
Fernandez works at Darien Public School District in Darien, Connecticut, a town that in 2018 was profiled as the wealthiest place in the country. She laments Carlson’s prior reporting on how the district called for an increase in “the race-conscious education of our students” after the death of George Floyd and sent a letter singling out “White Staff and White community members,” a factoid Fernandez conveniently neglects to mention.
“America’s K-12 schools, like the high school I teach in, are no hubs of radical indoctrination, though right-leaning newsertainment might convince you otherwise,” the teacher writes. ” …Now a rash of legislation in mostly red states seeks to restrict instruction and curriculum around ‘divisive concepts’ through laws largely meant to curtail teaching about systemic racism. If that doesn’t read as chilling, it should. Put another way, politicians are dictating how the public learns about history — and the history those politicians are making.”
If this description of why conservatives are discontent with what they view as the indoctrination of children seems familiar, it is because it is. Just like left-leaning writers in The Atlantic, The New York Times, The Washington Post, Vanity Fair, and so on, Fernandez either misconstrues or misunderstands the situation in U.S. public schools. One can only hope it is unintentional.
Not only do schools often function as government-holding cells monopolized by well-paid consulting groups and teachers’ unions, but the dogma Fernandez refers to does not solely end in systemic racism training. In curricula, CRT communicates to students that they are nothing more than their identity and are responsible for all actions done by people of their same physical appearance.
Some kids are not only taught that they are inherently oppressed by their skin color, but also that some are inherently biased and racist. Buzzwords like “diversity,” “equity,” “inclusion,” and “antiracism” are all predicated on the intersectional hierarchy of alleged privilege.
The left denies all this even though it’s right there in the books and teaching materials they’re pushing. As Fernandez does, they respond that critics are oddly opposed to “diversity” and “sensitivity training.” Charles Blow phrased it this way in The New York Times, declaring CRT is supposedly just based on “[i]dentifying and challenging racism,” nothing more. This is false. As Christopher Rufo articulated to The Federalist earlier this week, “It is a language war.”
What people are opposed to, plain and simple, is racism. People oppose treating individuals differently because of the color of their skin. That’s it. It’s not about “sensitivity” or “diversity,” but the use of these labels to sneak in government-endorsed racism.
While claiming that teachers “avoid” topics like these, Fernandez also tacitly admits that teachers do in fact bring their worldview and values into their teaching — and of course they do. Teaching is not only about imparting facts, but the moral formation and shaping of a child. Like a corrupt media that claims they are objective while being horribly biased to the point of fabricating falsehoods, the teaching profession also claims a false veneer of impartiality while in fact deliberately shaping children’s attitudes and beliefs.
Fernandez describes this very dynamic in her article:
Teachers I interviewed for my book ‘Schooled’ see their mission as developing skills and delivering content but also helping shape future adults; some envision their grown students as empowered citizens or global innovators, others as family-focused traditionalists. Because education is value-driven, the profession is inescapably political. Some teachers definitely embrace this by updating curriculum to reflect the concerns of their students and the nation. Today, as ever, these often involve issues of race and gender. But the profession is hardly a leftist cabal.
After claiming teachers keep politics out of the classroom while providing evidence of exactly the opposite, Fernandez also cites a 2017 Atlantic op-ed titled “The Case for Contentious Curricula” that states “[t]eachers should not shy away from addressing controversial issues in the classroom” and “[t]he question is whether teachers will be empowered to address them.”
So, after paragraphs of ranting about the conspiracy theorist right needlessly worried about “divisive concepts,” she alludes to evidence of the left seeking to undermine the system through political motivation. This is evidence either of complete lack of self-awareness or of an intent to deceive.
“Healthy debate and essential education will be stunted by ‘divisive concepts’ legislation,” the teacher writes. “While political pressure has long silenced teachers, these laws and the likely further silencing they will produce is especially dangerous in a time when the very fact of a violent invasion of the U.S. Capitol is disputed and deemed political.”
For someone incessantly mocking the right as out-of-touch and living in an alternate reality, Fernandez sure comes off as doing the same. She employs an all-too-familiar tactic: Protect your radical tribe by any means necessary.
If it means deliberate deception, so be it. If it means spinning truth to protect those in power, so be it. That is, after all, what teaching children means — isn’t it?