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Critical race theory is the new Common Core. “Critical race theory is a practice. It’s an approach to grappling with a history of White supremacy that rejects the belief that what’s in the past is in the past, and that the laws and systems that grow from that past are detached from it,” said Kimberlé Crenshaw, a founding critical race theorist and a law professor who teaches at UCLA and Columbia University.

The thing of it is, a great deal about our past is not being taught. We’re getting one side of the story. Nearly everyone agrees that slavery was a moral evil. A war was fought over it. Are there still bigotry and racism in the United States? Yes. Is racism “systemic,” built into every system of our nation? To hear some people describe it, everything is racist — from math to grammar. Even the way white people walk is said to be racist.

Fighting for racial justice has a long history. Views on race and slavery were not monolithic in the 18th century. There was significant opposition to slavery among the nation’s political leaders.[1] “No credit is given to such American Founders as John Jay, Alexander Hamilton, and Philip Schuyler for their roles in the newly formed New York Manumission Society, organized in 1785, which became the ‘working organization of the antislavery movement,’ keeping the pressure up ‘on state officials’ and ‘the issue before the public’—and that ultimately succeeded in phasing out slavery in New York State. Full abolition was achieved in 1827.”[2]

Frederick Douglass (1818–1895), a former slave, took a stand against the Constitution early in his career opposing slavery. “In his abolitionist newspaper, The North Star, he condemned the founding fathers for having ‘cunningly wrought into’ the Constitution ‘the pro-slavery principle.’ Douglass argued that the Constitution’s rhetoric about liberty was belied by its pro-slavery provisions.”[3] He wrote:

Liberty and Slavery — opposite as Heaven and Hell — are both in the Constitution; and the oath to support the latter, is an oath to perform that which God has made impossible. The man that swears support to it vows allegiance to two masters — so opposite, that fidelity to one is, necessarily treachery to the other. If we adopt the preamble with Liberty and Justice, we must repudiate the enacting clauses, with Kidnapping and Slaveholding.[4]

By 1851, Douglass had changed his view of the Constitution related to slavery:

Its language is “we the people”; not we the white people, not even we the citizens, not we the privileged class, not we the high, not we the low, but we the people; not we the horses, sheep, and swine, and wheel-barrows, but we the people; and if Negroes are people, they are included in the benefits for which the Constitution of the United States of America was ordained and established.[5]

In his “What to the Slave is the Fourth of July?,” Douglass asked the following about the Constitution:

In that instrument I hold there is neither warrant, license, nor sanction of the hateful thing; but, interpreted as it ought to be interpreted, the Constitution is a GLORIOUS LIBERTY DOCUMENT. Read its preamble, consider its purposes. Is slavery among them? Is it at the gateway? or is it in the temple? It is neither. While I do not intend to argue this question on the present occasion, let me ask, if it be not somewhat singular that, if the Constitution were intended to be, by its framers and adopters, a slave-holding instrument, why neither slavery, slaveholding, nor slave can anywhere be found in it…. Now, take the constitution according to its plain reading, and I defy the presentation of a single pro-slavery clause in it. On the other hand it will be found to contain principles and purposes, entirely hostile to the existence of slavery.

Behind the scenes, people of goodwill were working in the open to abolishing slavery by an appeal to biblical justice and our founding documents. The American Anti-Slavery Society was founded in 1833. A third of its leadership was made up of gospel ministers:

With entire confidence in the overruling justice of God, we plant ourselves upon the Declaration of our Independence and the truths of Divine Revelation, as upon the Everlasting Rock.

We shall organize Anti-Slavery Societies, if possible, in every city, town and village in our land.

We shall send forth agents to lift up the voice of remonstrance of warning, of entreaty, and rebuke. We shall circulate, unsparingly and extensively, anti-slavery tracts and periodicals.

We shall enlist the pulpit and the press in the cause of the suffering and the dumb [i.e., those unable to speak for themselves].

We shall aim at a purification of the churches from all participation in the guilt of slavery.

*****

Our trust for victory is solely in God. We may be personally defeated, but our principles never. Truth, Justice, Reason, Humanity, must and will gloriously triumph. Already a host is coming up to the help of the Lord against the mighty, and the prospect before us is full of encouragement.

It’s been said that whoever controls the schools rules the world. But it’s more fundamental than this. Whoever writes the textbooks supply the information that’s used by teachers who teach the students in the schools. It’s the content of books and the teachers that teach the material that controls the schools. Critical race theory is creating a divided America where racial justice and progress are being inhibited because for today’s racialists every white person is the enemy. The study will show that this is not true. It wasn’t true then and it isn’t true today. Unfortunately, those pushing CRT are making enemies of people who are most often allies.

Author: Gary DeMar

Gary—who served as President of American Vision for thirty-five years—is a graduate of Western Michigan University (1973) and earned his M.Div. at Reformed Theological Seminary in 1979. Author of countless essays, news articles, and more than 27 book titles, he has been featured by nearly every major news media outlet. Gary also has hosted The Gary DeMar Show, History Unwrapped, and the Gary DeMar’s Vantage Point Webshow and is a regular contributor to AmericanVision.org. Gary has lived in the Atlanta area since 1979 with his wife, Carol. They have two married sons and are enjoying being grandparents. Gary and Carol are members of Midway Presbyterian Church (PCA).