As the never-ending Republican-led war on critical race theory continues, Texas is leading the charge with its Senate voting in favour of another bill that aims to scrap a lot of the current curriculum requirements. Earlier this year, the state got in hot water in May as its ‘critical race theory bill’—its aim to ban the theory in schools—was passed in the US Senate. This new bill continues to strip back the actual history of the states and goes even further in upholding the values of white supremacy. Don’t believe me? Well here’s what the new proposal aims to remove from Texas education.
The most notable element that has created shock waves is the elimination of the requirement for schools to teach its students “the history of white supremacy, including but not limited to the institution of slavery, the eugenics movement, and the Klu Klux Klan [KKK], and the ways in which it is morally wrong.” To put it simply, this was a requirement in the civics curriculum, and now? It might not be. It doesn’t stop there.
While the news of the KKK amendment is causing shockwaves, the bill itself—Senate Bill 3—aims to redact over two dozen other curriculum requirements, HuffPost reports. The KKK is one thing and sure, it makes a controversial headline but the very fabric of American history is at threat of being wiped—if the white supremacy wasn’t clear enough, it gets worse.
Bloomberg reports that the legislation passed in the Texas Senate on a vote of 18 to 4 on Friday 16 July; and if officially passed as law, the bill would seek to aim to remove the requirement for educators to teach their students about: Native American history altogether, elements of the Civil Rights movement including Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech, the history of the women’s suffrage movement and activist Susan B. Anthony, and the work of Cesar Chavez (to name a few). It also limits teachers from discussing “particular current event[s] or widely debated and currently controversial issue[s] of public policy or social affairs.”
Instead, the bill focuses its education on the founding fathers, their writings and things pertaining to the constitution of the US—including the thirteenth, fourteenth and nineteenth amendments. Many people noticed the missing fifteenth amendment (“the right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of race, colour or previous condition to servitude”) as another attempt at voter suppression. Texas, you just keep knocking it out of the park, and not in a good way.
Texas State Representative James Talarico—who was a major opponent to the original bill—expressed his dismay at the removal of these education requirements to The Texas Tribune, “The amendments the House added were essential to ensure that we were teaching students all of American history—the good, the bad and the ugly.” He continued, “They were put in place to ensure that teachers wouldn’t be punished for telling their students the truth. And if we were to strip them, I could see teachers across the state of Texas being silenced.”
“It’s a frightening dystopian future that starts to come into focus,” he added.
There is some good news; the bill is not expected to actually become law as it still has to win a vote in the House of Representatives—there’s still hope considering that a total of 56 Democratic Representations deadlocked the House after leaving the state in a bid to block the session taking place.