Editing in Progress: ‘All uniformed agents need CRT’: Chicago Police would take Critical Race Theory courses under bill heralded by activist, political activist (Springfield, IL) – A bill that would require Chicago Police Department employees to take critical race theory (CRT) courses before hiring and during their time in the academy now sits in the Rules Committee in Springfield.
House Bill 4066 seeks to amend the Illinois Police Training Act to establish the Critical Race Theory Academy, which shall be operated by a board of 5 members appointed by the governor.
“Understand that we here in Chicago have been pushing legislation for mandatory CRT Academy for Chicago Police as a policy response to the Consent Decree in 2017,” activist and political consultant Maxwell Justice Little posted on Facebook. “Call/email your Illinois State Representative and request of them to support HB4066, CRT Academy for law enforcement agencies in Illinois. All uniformed agents need CRT.”
The measure would also allow the board to appoint members to the Academy Curriculum Committee, among them critical race scholars, critical sociologists, critical educational leaders, critical community organizers, members of the General Assembly, law enforcement officer policy makers and invested community members, with all candidates beginning courses at a certified school.
All across the state and other parts of the country, the issue of Critical Race Theory has sparked a national debate about the role of race and racism in school districts. CRT is a school of thought that generally focuses on how power structures and institutions impact racial minorities. Critics say the system promotes racism.
Illinois State University professor Andrew Hartman recently likened the debate to “typical culture wars where the issue itself is not always driving the controversy.”
Hartman was interviewed by NPR to discuss the controversy, adding “I’m not really sure that the conservatives right now know what it is or know their history.”
The author of ‘A War for the Soul of America: A History of Culture Wars,’ he later added, “Conservatives, since the 1960s, have increasingly defined American society as a colorblind society, in the sense that maybe there were some problems in the past but American society corrected itself and now we have these laws and institutions that are meritocratic and anybody, regardless of race, can achieve the American dream.”
Emotions are at an all-time high on the subject. On the other side of the debate, radio host and Black father Ty Smith recently insisted at a school board meeting that the instruction offers up all the wrong lessons to District 87 students.
“How to dislike each other, that’s pretty much all it’s going to come down to,” Smith said, going viral on YouTube. “You’re going to deliberately teach kids this White kid right here got it better than you because he’s White. You’re going to purposely tell a White kid oh, all the Black people are down and oppressed. How do I have two medical degrees if I’m sitting here oppressed? … No mom, no dad in the house, I worked my way through college.”
Smith said he is hoping everyone comes to realize one thing.
“It all comes down to the ones that are going to be hurt from this being the kids,” he said. “This is something to talk about right now.”
Editing in Progress: ‘All uniformed agents need CRT’: Chicago Police would take Critical Race Theory courses under bill heralded by activist, political activist