Evangelical Christian and Growing Pains actor Kirk Cameron showed off every bit of white privilege he has in a video promoting his upcoming documentary, The Homeschool Awakening. In a YouTube video posted on Saturday, Cameron included a trailer for the documentary promoting homeschooling as an alternative to traditional public school. After that trailer played, he went on to describe what he considered to be failings of the public education system. I know what you’re thinking if you haven’t seen the video yet: Why, it must be an analysis of the funding inequities that have for decades led to fewer resources for schools serving Black and brown students. That would be a worthy critique. Cameron, however, didn’t even attempt to broach the subject. Instead, he went on a rant about perceived immorality in public school education.
"Since the pandemic, we've been made grossly aware of the inaccurate and the immoral things that the public school system has been teaching our children and our grandchildren,” the actor said. “And it's up to us as parents to cultivate the hearts and minds and souls of our children toward what is good, toward what is right, beautiful, and true."
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Cameron never mentioned critical race theory by name. But given he recently gave evangelical podcast host Josh Daws a platform to critic the framework as in “conflict with the gospel,” it’s not difficult to read between the lines of Cameron’s latest video.
"And the public school system, unfortunately, has not been working with us, but actively working against us," the actor said. "In my opinion, the public school system has become public enemy No. 1."
He went on to say:
"We need to take back the education of our children because whoever controls the textbooks controls the future. Whoever's shaping the hearts and minds and souls of our children will determine whether or not we live in a free country and we have freedom of speech, and economic freedom, and educational and political freedom, and religious freedom."
It’s quite interesting that the response to Black people demanding an end to racial profiling, racism, and white supremacy is Republicans asserting that their freedom is being threatened. That presumed freedom to treat others as less than is as direct of an admission of white supremacy as we’re going to get.
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Of course white supremacists would consider critical race theory a threat. That framework for interpreting law maintains racism has an undeniable effect on the legal foundation of American society. As such, the framework threatens to expose the white supremacists hiding among us.
Still, it was never widely taught in K-12 classrooms, and it would be pretty exclusively confined to law schools if not for Republicans redefining it to mean anything that reveals the truth of racism or prejudice in America. Their push has been to ban that redefinition in classrooms, which has often translated to districts attempting to water down the already bland representation of Black history in K-12 education. And it hasn’t stopped at Black history.
After Florida Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis signed the disgusting Don’t Say Gay bill into law, which in effect bans educators from teaching about sexual orientation or gender identity, copycat legislative proposals followed in more than a dozen other states, NPR reported.
To name a few: Alabama, Arizona, Georgia, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Missouri, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, and Tennessee.
Stopping to think about what your neighbors really mean when they hang the American flag is simply frightening. I can only pray that everyone doesn’t homeschool their children because in some cases, public school is a child’s only chance to interact with those of us who are kind, loving, and liberated.
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