South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem has signed a bill that attempts to dampen the teaching of critical race theory in state universities and colleges.
House Bill 1012 will prevent teachers and administrators from being forced into training events that may be based on critical race theory. The bill itself does not actually use the term “critical race theory,” however, it does list seven “divisive concepts” that the legislature hopes to prevent with its passage.
For the purposes of this Act, the term, divisive concepts, means:
(1) That any race, color, religion, sex, ethnicity, or national origin is inherently superior or inferior;
(2) That individuals should be discriminated against or adversely treated because of their race, color, religion, sex, ethnicity, or national origin;
(3) That an individual’s moral character is inherently determined by their race, color, religion, sex, ethnicity, or national origin;
(4) That an individual, by virtue of their race, color, religion, sex, ethnicity, or national origin is inherently racist, sexist, or oppressive, whether consciously or subconsciously;
(5) That individuals, by virtue of race, color, religion, sex, ethnicity, or national origin, are inherently responsible for actions committed in the past by other members of the same race, color, religion, sex, ethnicity, or national origin;
(6) An individual should feel discomfort, guilt, anguish, or any other form of psychological distress on account of the individual’s race, color, religion, ethnicity, or national origin; or
(7) Meritocracy or traits such as a strong work ethic are racist or sexist or were created by members of a particular race or sex to oppress members of another race or sex.
Noem says she hopes the bill helps preserve college campuses as a place of “freedom of thought and expression.”
“No student or teacher should have to endorse critical race theory in order to attend, graduate from, or teach at our public universities. College should remain a place where freedom of thought and expression are encouraged, not stifled by political agendas.”
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