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Progressives are having another one of their meltdowns over Florida’s government again. After it was reported that the state rejected the College Board’s new AP African American studies course, left-wing politicians and members of the chattering class lost their collective minds.
Democrats pounced on the story, using it as an opportunity to scream “thasss raaaaacyisss” yet again. Progressive influencers spread a deceptive narrative claiming that DeSantis was trying to erase black history from the face of the Earth. Here’s a small sampling:
Remember when we were told they weren't opposing the teaching of Black history, just "CRT"? And how many dismissed those of us who said these laws were anti-history laws, and anti-Black? Perhaps one day folks will listen to those who know. https://t.co/LnBhTYcMsZ
— Ida Bae Wells (@nhannahjones) January 19, 2023
Over the past few years, Gov. DeSantis & the state of Florida have led the charge in the national erasure of Black history & culture…from July 2021 through June 2022, Florida banned between 500 & 750 books, the second-highest of any state. Signed👇🏽
— Karla Hernández (@KarlaforFlorida) January 22, 2023
Ron DeSantis is banning Black history in Florida as part of his strategy to win in 2024. This is all part of DeSantis plan to become the GOP's next Grand Wizard. My new article: https://t.co/6MM2nEtOkz
— (((DeanObeidallah))) (@DeanObeidallah) January 22, 2023
White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre also slammed the governor, accusing him of trying to “block” the “study of black Americans.”
They also used it as an opportunity to slam the Stop WOKE Act, the law forbidding much of the material in the proposed curriculum.
However, as I wrote in an article for Newsweek Opinion, this is not the case. Florida did not reject the material outright, it allowed the College Board to revamp it in a way that isn’t a blatant attempt to indoctrinate youth into progressive ideology under the guise of studying the African American experience.
As DeSantis said during a recent press conference:
“Who would say that an important part of Black History is ‘queer theory’? Somebody pushing an agenda on our kids… They have stuff about intersectionality, abolishing prisons. That’s a political agenda.”
"Who would say that an important part of Black History is 'queer theory'? Somebody pushing an agenda on our kids… They have stuff about intersectionality, abolishing prisons. That's a political agenda."
— DeSantis War Room 🐊 (@DeSantisWarRoom) January 23, 2023
Included in the curriculum were modules promoting the overthrow of capitalism and other Marxist ideas. It included works from black socialist authors.
But from the beginning, the College Board’s secrecy surrounding the AP course was suspect. National Review’s Stanley Kurtz, who has covered this issue extensively, wrote:
The debate over APAAS has been complicated by the College Board’s secrecy. The College Board has steadfastly refused to release the APAAS curriculum framework or associated materials. Nonetheless, I obtained a copy of the APAAS curriculum and wrote about it in September, laying out its socialist agenda and its promotion of Critical Race Theory (CRT). Unfortunately, no one could judge the accuracy of my characterization because the curriculum remained secret. I confined myself at the time to a “fair use” discussion of the framework, declining to publish the full curriculum out of respect for the College Board’s insistence that it was a “trade secret.” In the wake of the controversy, however, the Florida Standard newspaper has obtained a copy of the pilot APAAS curriculum and made it public.
To be clear, I actually have no problem with the inclusion of Marxist thought in black history. People like W.E.B. DuBois, the Black Panthers, and others were integral factors in the evolution of African American culture. In a high school AP class, especially for seniors, there should be no problem with this.
But the real issue is the fact that the coursework does not include opposing viewpoints. It does not include material from the likes of Frederick Douglass, Booker T. Washington, Thomas Sowell, and others who were not on board with Marxist thought. The question is: How can students learn to think critically if they are only given one perspective?
That’s the crux of the matter. It’s also the entire point of the new course; they don’t want students thinking critically about issues pertaining to race. Instead, they want to fill their minds with far-leftist ideas on these matters because it is not about education, it is about indoctrination.
I have my criticisms of the Stop WOKE Act. In some ways, I think it is government overreach. But the idea that it is not warranted is disproven by this attempt to covertly introduce concepts inspired by critical race theory in the classroom. Nevertheless, none of this will keep progressives from lying about the whole thing.