The Censorship of the Critical Race Theory

Critical race theory is a structure of belief that examines racism and prejudice as a part of legal and governmental systemic problems instead of solely human to human biases. The source Britannica further explains this term when stating, “Critical race theorists hold that racism is inherent in the law and legal institutions of the United States insofar as they function to create and maintain social, economic, and political inequalities between whites and nonwhites, especially African Americans.” Some believe this structural framework of racism is significant and must be taught to kids at a young age to help them understand all components of racism and how these ideas have formed the world around us. However, recent controversy has arisen with restrictions banning such ideals in school systems. 

Critical race theory is based on a few basic principles. One is that racism is not biologically natural but instead socially constructed. Britannica further states, “Some CRT theorists hold that race is an artificial association or correlation between a set of physical characteristics—including skin color, certain facial features, and hair texture—and an imagined set of psychological and behavioral tendencies, conceived as either positive or negative, good or bad.”

Secondly, racism is prevalent today, and most people of color experience it. Some examples of racism we see every day are microaggressions or comments that may be subtle or even unintentionally racist against a person of color. Though racist legislatures like the Jim Crow laws are now banned, the lasting effects of oppressive laws still impact today. For instance, black and Hispanic people are far more likely to experience police brutality and have a greater chance of being imprisoned and facing more severe imprisonment. They are also more likely to live in poorer neighborhoods with less access to education, leading to fewer job opportunities, caused by previous laws like redlining in the United States that made housing more expensive with less access to loans for minorities. Though these laws were revoked, people of color in these poorer neighborhoods could not afford better housing or make their way into wealthier neighborhoods. Thus, these poorer neighborhoods had and continue to have less access to good public education while the wealthier and predominantly white neighborhoods have such access. Thus, different racial groups have been separated, progressing white people and lowering minorities. Though explicit segregating laws are no longer in effect, segregation is still prevalent in these ways.

The third component regards a term known as interest convergence, which explains that many changes in racist laws were based on the benefits they would give to white people. One primary example is the overturning of the separate but equal law that enforced segregation. Many say that the overturning of this law was based on white people’s fear of repercussions from black soldiers, who helped fight in wars for America, and the worry that America’s reputation of racism would lessen their impact on other nations and in the Cold War.

The fourth component explains that people of color have faced oppression and negative stereotypes through media representations. Different races have perpetually been presented as caricatures or harmful stereotypes. Black people have been presented as workers for white people with traits like laziness and little intelligence. The fifth component is intersectionality, which determines that a person of color can identify within multiple groups. Thus, a Hispanic person can identify with their gender, sexual orientation, religion, and more. Lastly, the sixth component covers the idea that people of color can speak about racism for others within their group.

Critical race theory is an essential system that examines racism beyond human to human interaction. However, many areas around the country have been in disagreement on whether or not schools should teach critical race theory. In Jackson, Mississippi, black lawmakers left in objection to a new law that banned critical race theory from schools. According to white Republican senator Michael McLendon of Hernando, “Systematic race theory should not be taught in our schools.” Though McLendon could not clearly define critical race theory, he and others had firm beliefs over keeping such teachings out of the school systems. Trump also stated that the theory is anti-American, anti-white racist, and far-leftist. He even banned racial-sensitivity training within federal agencies because he believed it went against American ideals.

Those who oppose critical race theory believe it deteriorates the idea of American laws, which are supposed to bring justice. They believe that students should not learn critical race theory because it forces people to perceive white people as inherently racist. However, critical race theory is vital to inform all people of the disadvantages people of color face. Though anti-critical race theorists do not want students to think poorly of white people, people of color are the ones who face the oppressive behavior taught in critical race theory even now. Censorship on the history of systemic racism perpetuates racism and ignorance by not allowing people to learn from their mistakes and hindering them from becoming more aware of racist tendencies.

In Texas, the magazine Smithsonian stated, “Last week, the Texas Board of Education voted to make a change to the state’s social studies standards that no serious historian would quibble with, but is, nevertheless, controversial in the Lone Star State: to teach that slavery was the central issue of the American Civil War, and not, as previous standards had dictated, a cause eclipsed by states’ rights and sectionalism.” Slavery was the primary cause of the American Civil War. However, textbooks and teachers teach students that states’ rights were the cause. This decision was to prohibit anti-American views. However, if students aren’t aware of all aspects of American history, they won’t know how they can move forward to prevent the past from repeating itself.

Ideas of patriotism have masked efforts to shut down critical race theory. However, efforts to save the guilt of white people for the racism people of color have faced have received more attention than the actual racism directed toward people of color. Thus, people need to learn the errors of their ways and the issues in our society. Because with censorship of racism and the wrongs against marginalized communities, no American can be patriotic.

Works Cited

Britannica, The Editors of Encyclopaedia. “critical race theory”. Encyclopedia Britannica, 21 Sep. 2021, Accessed 23 January 2022.

Press, T. A. (2022, January 22). Black mississippi senators walk out in protest over critical race theory ban. NPR. Retrieved January 25, 2022, from 

Magazine, S. (2018, November 19). Texas will finally teach that slavery was main cause of the Civil War. Retrieved January 25, 2022, from Critical race theory FAQ. NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund. (2021, December 22). Retrieved January 25, 2022, from