OKLAHOMA CITY – Attorney General Mike Hunter today filed official comments opposing a rule proposed by the U.S. Department of Education that, contrary to federal law, would prioritize grants for schools teaching critical race theory and the “1619 Project.”
In the proposed rule, the Department of Education embraces the much-criticized “1619 Project,” which argued that U.S. history should be defined by our worst moments, as well as critical race theory scholar Ibram X. Kendi, who advocates for a form of racial discrimination euphemistically called “anti-racism.”
The comments, filed by Attorney General Hunter and 19 other state attorneys general, call the teachings of the “1619 Project” and Mr. Kendi deeply flawed and controversial.
The attorneys general explain that the Education Department’s proposal will distort, rather than illuminate, a proper and accurate understanding of the nation’s history and governmental institutions, and that it is fundamentally at odds with federal and state law.
Attorney General Hunter said the Department should not force these contentious theories on children, nor inaccurately describe our nation’s history.
“America is not a fundamentally racist country,” Attorney General Hunter said. “And encouraging more racism and discrimination is not the solution to racism. Schools can and should teach history accurately, grounded in facts, including our shortcomings like the Trail of Tears and the Tulsa Race Massacre, and they can do so now. But, critical race theory and the 1619 Project misrepresent history as a whole. Federal grant funds should not reward inaccurate teachings in schools, especially not when they encourage racial division and discrimination.”
The comment letter states: “Promoting this warped view of American history does not support the teaching of American history as required by [federal] statute, but instead props up an idea based not in fact, but on the idea that the United States is a nation founded on white supremacy, patriarchy, and oppression and that these forces are still at the root of our society.”
The attorneys general say the proposed priorities should be rejected.