More than Fox’s “War on Christmas,” critical race theory (CRT) is what gets white, right-wing America salivating for some culture war red meat. Providing lots of juicy sustenance is white supremacist Tucker Carlson who recently urged viewers to donate to a dark money PAC that wants to make white (washed) history great again!
Tucker began his "Indoctrination Nation" segment with some self-congratulation about how he has, for the last year pushed racist, right-wing propaganda informed America on what is really going on in American schools. In keeping with the propaganda Carlson, not an educator, proclaimed that “equity has changed the way kids are taught and has changed what they’re taught and it’s poison.”
He played video of a Florida mother, Quisha King, at a Florida school board meeting, railing about how critical race theory teaches African-Americans that they are permanent victims of white racism. What Tucker didn’t tell us is that King, who has appeared on Fox as just a concerned mom, is really a GOP strategist and was a regional coordinator for the RNC in 2020.
Despite the fact that Fox News, in conjunction with right wing groups, is actively promoting the opposition to critical race theory, Carlson alleged that parents have had no support for their righteous crusade (or is it jihad?) – until now. He reported that a new PAC, the 1776 Project, has stepped in to save the day by helping folks elect school board members (per Tucker, “sane people”) who are sympathetic to those who feel triggered by references to American racism.
He introduced the PAC’s founder, Ryan Girdusky, a right-wing activist who has worked for numerous GOP candidates and – drum roll please – Project Veritas, a group whose specialty of deceptive “gotcha” videos is a page out of the Fox News playbook. That Girdusky is a total fanboy of Tucker Carlson is seen on his Twitter page where he describes Tucker as “the man of the moment.”
Girdusky explained that his group will be helping those school board candidates who oppose critical race theory and who will purchase “patriotic” textbooks which teach “a version of American history” that will “counter principals and teachers who are activists” and make history “sane again.”
Carlson played the right wing’s popular Soros card: “You’re basically counter balancing or trying to counter balance what George Soros for 30 years, influencing local elections. …Thank heaven.”
Girdusky claimed he has had a fantastic response from parents who feel hopeless against the evil forces of liberal education that force “a racist” approach to education.
Tucker agreed with him that critical race theory is “state-sanctioned racism.” As he spoke, the propaganda message was reinforced by relentless banners: “Young students increasingly exposed to academic identity politics and victimology;” 1776 Project wants to bring back patriotism and pride in our American history;" "Bad education, young kids indoctrinated with woke ideology;" "Pushing back against radical race teachings;" Conservative PAC supports school board candidates who oppose anti-white curriculums;" "1776 Project helps candidates who want divisive philosophies out of school;" "Fighting radical race teachings in school."
Girdusky predicted that his group will “really go far and do a lot.” He whined about how big GOP money isn’t being sufficiently spent on anti-critical race activism. In congratulating himself, he said that it took a “kid from Queens” to stand up to what Carlson called “this stuff” he claimed most people “hate.”
Carlson threw in a scary history reference about “how most people didn’t like the Bolsheviks either and they took over the entire country for 70 years, so it can happen." He also suggested that rather than writing a check to AEI (American Enterprise Institute – a conservative think tank), folks should write a check to Girdusky’s PAC.
Pretty slick (but basic) Tucker Carlson agitprop. Not only did we get standard anti-CRT talking points – but we were also treated to a gretuitious slam on George Soros who, Tucker suggested, controls American elections – a popular trope amongst the radical (and anti-Semitic) right wing.
When it comes to making American history white again, Tucker Carlson (who would never be divisive) is, indeed, the "man of the moment."
You can watch Tucker spread his patented propaganda poison, below, from the June 11, 2021 Tucker Carlson Tonight.
The reality of CRT is that it’s about perspective. It’s about people learning to look at history from more than one vantage point, and learning that what may have been good for one group of people may not have been good for another. We could just point to Howard Zinn’s A People’s History of the United States as the best example of this – and it would be a constructive idea to include that book right next to the standard textbook when evaluating various eras. Zinn’s book isn’t anti-American, but it is a corrective for people who assume that American history is one of saints just trying to make the world nicer.
The Right Wing resents this curriculum because it impinges on the narrative they’d prefer to hear – one where women and non-whites knew their place and kept their mouths shut if they knew what was good for them. In other words, a time when America was presumably “great”. But multiple scholars have had the temerity to stand up for themselves and resist the attempts by the Right to bully them.
Every time this happens, we see the Right Wing try to paint the group as a boogeyman. When angry Right Wing goons repeatedly attack various towns and communities and some unorganized Lefties stand up to them as “antifa”, the Right Wing suddenly decides that “antifa” is a “terrorist group”. When black men and women are repeatedly and unjustifiably killed by police and community groups form “Black Lives Matter” to speak out about it, the Right Wing condemns the group and demonizes its members. And now we have this nonsense about CRT.
This all boils down to angry Right Wingers not liking it when the people they’ve bullied actually stand up to them. And the responses we’re seeing, not only from Carlson but from pretty much every Right Wing pundit out there, are essentially just more bullying. Given that the first attempt at bullying failed, I’m thinking this one will not be successful either. But angry Right Wingers are apparently too dug in to process that – the same way that they keep insisting that Donald Trump did not lose the 2020 Election.