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Statement on CRT from the Rutland Co Democratic Executive Committee

Please read the Rutland County Democratic Executive Committee’s letter to the editor in today’s Rutland Herald:

The Rutland County Democratic Executive Committee supports our public schools in following best practices to increase representation in lesson plans and to integrate restorative, equitable procedures. We support the research on systemic racism that is needed to dismantle hate. Systemic racism exists. For proof, just look at the attacks on best practices in diversity, equity and inclusion in our schools.

That’s the real source of the recent outrage directed at Critical Race Theory (CRT). Complaints about CRT strike at the essential bonds of our shared humanity, fueling division and mocking our efforts to build a more inclusive, resilient community.

No K-12 program is teaching CRT, because this theory is taught only to law students and, perhaps, to graduate students in a few other disciplines like history or sociology. But all K-12 programs should be supported in teaching ideas that can be found in CRT but aren’t specific to it. This includes equity and inclusion, both of which are core democratic values and the source of the USA’s strength. K-12 programs should also be teaching the truth about the damage done by racism both in the past and present. Failing to do so harms students of color and ill-prepares white students for an increasingly diverse and rich world. These ideas can be found in CRT, but they aren’t unique to it. They’re the basis of fundamental human decency. Attacking these ideas through an assault on CRT ultimately erodes the bedrock of our common identity.

We can’t afford for Rutland County or Vermont to become one of the places where simple human decency is banned thanks to the unfounded fear of CRT. Please make your voices heard. There’s too much at stake. Let’s support diversity, equity and inclusion. Let’s support our schools and our kids.

In solidarity,

Heather Juliussen

Rutland County Democrats,