President Donald Trump has slammed what he calls “critical race theory” and the 1619 Project for efforts in re-framing American history within the context of the country’s relationship with slavery and the overall subjugation of its Black people.
A 1776 Commission, created by executive order, will counter the efforts of the 1619 Project, an educational initiative by the New York Times. The 1776 Commission is supposed to promote “patriotic education” according to the president.
Trump told supporters on Thursday in Michigan: “Critical race theory, the 1619 project, and the crusade against American history is toxic propaganda, ideological poison that if not removed will dissolve the civic bonds that tie us together.”
He went on to describe centering slavery in American history as a “prejudiced ideology” that “will destroy our country”. The president has since banned training according to the 1619 Project which is already beingused by thousands of schools across all states.
In a related development. the Secretary of Education, Betsy DeVos, has praised an alternative history curriculum to the 1619 Project. The new curriculum was designed by 1776 Unites, a campaign by conservative academics, activists and entrepreneurs along with the American Enterprise Institute (AEI) to offer “a more complete and inspiring story of the history of African-Americans in the United States”.
Although the federal government cannot institute a nationwide curriculum, DeVos is of the view that counter-curriculum to that of the 1619 Project “actually honors and respects our history and embraces all of the parts of our history”, she said in a conversation with Ian Rowe of the AEI.
The 1776 Unites Project is also supported by the Woodson Center, whose founder the African-American conservative civil rights leader Robert Woodson.
Woodson caused controversy in July when alleged that, “Low income blacks are just collateral damage to their [progressive] efforts to just demean and destroy the civic institutions in this country.”