Critical Race Theory

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[See, also, the Christ vs. Critical Race Theory section on  this page .]

As a theory, CRT descends from European and North American philosophical traditions, particularly Marxism and Postmodernism.  Like these worldviews of its intellectual ancestry, CRT sees the world in terms of power dynamics.  In this way of thinking, social evils such as poverty, crime, or oppression result not from universal human frailties but from Euro-Americans intent on securing and increasing their economic and social power.  Based on this metanarrative, equality and justice demand privileging the stories of those kept out of power [a.k.a. “cancelled]…  Many Christian critics… are specifically concerned with how CRT conflicts with a Christian worldview, particularly in areas of identity and morality [because] the answers CRT provides are very different than those Christianity offers…  By simplistically reducing evil to power dynamics and external social realities, CRT denies moral agency and the redemptive potential of entire groups of people because of their racial identity…  If we rob our Faith of its social implications, we are no longer talking about Christianity. Such a personalized, privatized moral system may make us feel better, but it will never stand up to the rival worldviews of our day.


Critical race theory, like other critical theories — postcolonialism or queer theory, for example — is self-certifying.  Its basic claims, for example, that racism is systemic or that being non-racist is impossible, are not conclusions drawn from arguments.  They are axioms, and they cannot be challenged by those who do not agree with them.  Those who ­dissent or offer criticism are, by definition, part of the problem.  This pattern can be seen in the reactions of pundits to the fact that in the recent election, Donald Trump increased his support among Latinos and African Americans…  But better, more telepathic, minds [on the political left explained away these awakenings by minorities as] evidence that the oppressed are so dim that they frequently vote for their oppressors.  Nothing brings out the elitist paternalism of intellectuals on the left more quickly [however] than the fact that those it seeks to liberate from oppression so often fail to support progressive causes…  Critical theory, whatever form it takes, relies on the concept of false consciousness — the notion that the oppressors control society so completely that the oppressed believe their own interests are served by the status quo…  It [requires] every piece of evidence that might refute one’s theory to be transformed into further evidence of how deep and comprehensive the problem of oppression is…  Critical race theory is American in its origin and content, but Black Lives Matter has given it currency worldwide…  The attraction is obvious: Critical race theory rests on simple, therapeutic premises.  It leaves no room for argument or doubt…  Critical theories define central injustices as systemic.  This means that everyone is complicit, even if no one in particular is responsible.  The system is immoral; individual agents and acts reflect the evils of the system.  This analysis generates a strong tendency toward a flattened moral register without scale or hierarchy.  All racist, sexist, or homophobic deeds manifest and reinforce the evil of the system.  All acts, and even words, are tinged with violence: An insult is described in terms we think appropriate to a blow with the fist (‘verbal assault‘)…  Critical race theory’s allure for evangelicals and other Christians is [therefore] obvious.  Christians are supposed to speak up for the weak and the voiceless…  It is not surprising, therefore, that a [critical] theoretical framework that allows for easy identification and denunciation of evil is appealing.  But when that framework flattens our moral judgment and erases distinctions, makes ‘the system‘ the culprit, and guards its assertions with a self-certifying account of what must be affirmed, the scene is set not for Christian reconciliation but for cultural intimidation, as all dissent is denounced as racist…  [C]ritical race theory is [also] extremely seductive.  Who wants to be guilty of standing on the side of the oppressors rather than in solidarity with the victims of injustice?  The theory is likewise hard to oppose, since it denies the legitimacy of arguments that call it into question.  The he-who-is-not-­with-us-is-against-us rhetoric ensures that even tentative reservations will sound, well, racist.  All-embracing and transformative views often have a religious quality.  Critical race theory is no exception.  It has a creedal language and liturgy, with orthodox words (‘white privilege,’ ‘systemic racism‘) and prescribed actions (raising the fist, taking the knee).  To deviate from the forms is to deviate from the faith. Certain words are heretical (‘non-racist,’ ‘all lives matter‘).  The slogan ‘silence is violence‘ is a potent rhetorical weapon.  To fail to participate in the liturgy is to reject the antiracism the liturgy purports to represent something only a racist would do.  How has it come to pass that radical thinking of this sort now shakes American evangelical institutions such as the Southern Baptist Convention to their foundations?…  [Critical Race Theorists — including some in the highest echelons of the SBC — actualy believe] that Christians who are white cannot be Christians in any true sense.  Such a categorical judgment is startling.  It is also irrefutable on its own terms, given the inherent denial [by Critical Race Theory] of legitimate status to anything white Christians might believe or say in response…  Will any of the major magazines or websites of mainstream evangelicalism publish measured criticisms of critical race theory?  If not, then evangelicalism is not having a conversation on race; it is reciting a liturgy…  Evangelical leaders need to count the cost of letting rhetorical assertions of the sort made by [Critical Race Theorists] go unchallenged.  As the conceits of systemic evil, false consciousness, and hegemonic discourse are legitimated [by Critical Race Theory], we must prepare for other critical theories to use them against orthodox Christians.  Consider this formulation: ‘Straight, cisgendered Christianity exists to maintain false piety and sear the consciences of straight, cisgendered people against the oppression and exploitation of queer and trans people.’  The next jockey [riding the Critical Race Theory horse] may wear a rainbow shirt instead of one with a BLM logo.  But he’ll be riding the same horse.  It seems that some of the most influential institutions in American evangelicalism have already bet on him to win.

[BTW, and for the record…]

No, Martin Luther King Would Not Celebrate ‘Critical Race Theory


Critical race theory may be the Democrat left’s filthiest, ugliest big lie. It defines America as inherently and irredeemably bigoted, denounces all whites as racial oppressors, and diminishes all blacks as racially oppressed victims.  Lies, lies, lies…  Black Lives Matter, the ‘diversity‘ police, and other ‘systemic racism‘-mongers’… frightful fantasy is concocted to leave blacks cold and scared — all the better to swaddle them in the warm, loving arms of the left.  Ultimately, like every Democrat effort, this is about getting elected, retaining power, and controlling Americans as tightly as possible…  [I]f blacks feel not empowered but enfeebled within an alleged whirlpool of white hate, then too bad.  The Democrat left’s insatiable thirst for political domination must be quenched, by all means necessary…  The narrative [sold to blacks] is, ‘You can’t get ahead‘… [and] The Democrat left deliberately preaches this gospel of black failure…  So, [not surprisingly] black kids, don’t embrac[e] correctly written and spoken English…  These ‘anti-racist‘ racists are serving social cancer from huge, boiling cauldrons.  They are ladling defeatism into the bowls of black people and sickening the entire nation with their evil stew.  They must be ridiculed, shunned, defunded, and dismantled.

Deroy Murdoch, black American  hero .


God loves [us] black people as much as he loves everyone else.  That’s why he rebukes [us] black people just as much as he rebukes everyone else.  Christ shows no partiality.  We [black people] should be more like him, and less like critical race theorists.


Does Critical Race Theory promote racial harmony or does it ‘sow division‘ as the Trump administration claimed when it was banned in government institutions?
Employees across the Executive Branch [under the Obama adminstration  and continued under the Trump adminstration had] been [and  are again , now, under the Biden Administration] required to attend trainings where they are told that ‘virtually all White people contribute to racism‘…  Just as Marxism demonize[s] capitalists, CRT vilifies white people.  Both try to foment resentment, envy, and a victimhood complex among the oppressed class it claims to champion…  [I]t should be no wonder [therefore] that CRT has been criticized as ‘racist‘ and ‘divisive [because it is both]…  CRT’s neo-Marxist orientation only damages race relations and harms the interests of those it claims to serve… the CRT-informed philosophy, rhetoric, and strategy of the Black Lives Matter organization (whose leadership professe[s] to be ‘trained Marxists‘) is leading to mass riots, looting, vandalism, and assault.  The divisive violence has arrested progress for the cause of police reform, destroyed countless black-owned small businesses, and economically devastated many black communities.


Critical Race Theory is a dangerous and divisive ideology, one that assigns moral value to people on the basis of their skin color [rather than on ‘ the content of their character ].

[Assigning moral value to people on the basis of their skin color is, by definition, racist and exactly the opposite of what Martin Luther King “dreamed” he would one day see.]


[CRT] instructor teaches room full of white people that all white people are forever-racist, sub-human demons


Critical Race Theory Starting in Government Kindergartens Already Shredding Our Social Fabric


[T]here are significant positive aspects of the woke movement.  ‘Stay Woke’ has been a watchword for African-Americans encouraging others to stay awake to the deceptions and dangers of this world.  Being alert or awake to threat could make the difference between life or death in the struggle for racial justice…  There’s a lot of Christian ‘moral DNA’ in wokeness.  Christian leaders, such as William Wilberforce and Martin Luther King Jr, rooted their struggle against racism in the teachings of Jesus…  Many [Christian] thinkers [however]… feel that there are real deep-seated and threatening problems in wokeness…  Particularly troubling is the way that wokeness deals with dissenters.  People are defined as either ‘woke‘ or ‘not woke‘ in a way that extends far beyond a concern for racial justice and this shuts down dialogue and the possibility to grow in awareness around other justice issues…  It is here that ‘cancel culture‘ — an effort to shame, silence and sideline an individual or institution because of beliefs or opinions deemed socially unacceptable — intersects with wokeness, which is a whole new form of vindictive exclusion…  [There is also] a troubling naivety within the movement with its apparent view that sexism only occurs with men, and racism only with white people.  The sad reality is that all human beings have a tendency to be unjust toward others ( Rom 3:10-18 , 23 )…  The fuel for wokeness often seems to be anger: something seen not just in violent demonstrations but in the hunting out and pursuit of offenders. Journalists, executives, celebrities and even preachers increasingly find themselves carefully checking what they write or say, lest those committed to a woke ideology slander them on social media and then at their door…  The concept of ‘being woke’ is an attempt to create moral boundaries but without God.  It offers only a bleak and hopeless world in which a stern and constantly shifting morality subjects all to a judgment from which there can be no redemption or restoration. Far more preferable is the Christian message which, while it points out our deepest moral failings, offers us through Christ both pardon and a changed life.  Ultimately, wokeness needs both real grace and true forgiveness, and only God can give us that.


[A] new form of [fascistic fundamentalism is] rising within the United States…  The new [fascistic] fundamentalism goes by various names, including wokeness, radical liberalism, critical [race] theory, and progressivism…  This new form of [fascistic] fundamentalism is subtle, disguising its agenda in the language of liberalism even as it seeks to destroy the liberal arts [at least those that expose and threaten liberal fascism]…  The Woke follow Karl Marx, who taught that the liberal arts have merely extrinsic value as instruments that can be used to achieve various pragmatic goals.  Marxists sought, and seek, to cancel the liberal arts by redefining them in purely instrumental terms.  A hallmark of twentieth-century experiments in Marxism was the effort to channel man’s aesthetic faculties to purely useful ends, and to insist that works of imagination and beauty should be created and/or used only as tools to serve the goals of the state…  Woke Fundamentalism has been drawing from the Communist playbook by treating the liberal arts as if their value is merely instrumental in advancing social-justice agendas.  Among the Woke, the great literary, visual, and musical artworks of our tradition are valued purely for their didactic function in advancing a narrow range of political concerns, including feminism, critical race theory, post-colonialism, queer theory, and so on…  Meanwhile, scholars who insist on the older view, that the liberal arts are ends rather than simply means [to a totalitarian, fascistic, Marxist end], risk having their careers destroyed and their reputations ruined [which many have, the article cites only one of dozens of available examples]…  [A new] consensus among the Woke in academia [has emerged, believing] that their various disciplines — from classics to history to art to literature — should be pragmatized and politicized [rather than admired and taught for their own, intrinsic value]…  In these efforts [to politicize and/or remove the liberal arts], the richness and complexity of these disciplines are being reduced to a handful of simple formulae about race or gender…  Like ISIS, the Woke target zones of cultural significance, such as universities and historic sites.  And while they do not behead people, they whip up mass hysteria to try to take down entire disciplines and to ruin the careers of people deemed insufficiently woke.  Above all, Woke Fundamentalism is a virulent version of cancel culture, which aims to send Western civilization down the memory hole…  [W]oke iconoclasm and anti-intellectualism are actually more sinister than book-burning and statue-crushing, for they allow institutions of higher learning to continue operating even as they are being subverted.  The physical destruction of artworks and books will not be resisted if people become convinced that such things have no value anyway.  And that is exactly what the Woke seek to do as they propagandize university students with the notion that the liberal arts should be valued only as means to ends.  When the study of Western civilization — together with its art, literature, and music — becomes simply another tool for woke activism, then even if these disciplines remain formally in place, they have effectively been cancelled.



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