Deroy Murdock: Critical race theory mutilates centuries-old legacy of interracial cooperation

Critical Race Theory is a religion without forgiveness

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Critical Race Theory is a religion without forgiveness. CRT promotes the evil, despicable Big Lie that whites are — everywhere and forever — the permanent oppressors of Black people. No matter how much some Caucasians try to do right by Blacks, whites just can’t stop being cruel bigots, much as fish can’t stop breathing underwater.

For Blacks, conversely, CRT is a prison without parole: It preaches that Blacks are permanent, benighted victims of white hate, not victors who can and do succeed — however they choose to excel.

Because it judges people solely on skin color, CRT epitomizes racial prejudice.

Far more than a mere slap in the face, CRT is a brass-knuckled beat down of white and Black Americans who bravely have battled slavery, Jim Crow, and other forms of anti-Black racism. Since Democrat-fueled, state-mandated segregation ended in 1964, even more white and Black Americans have labored to advance the latter’s freedom, prosperity, and life prospects. CRT dismisses and defames these priceless efforts. As such, CRT has earned an icy, windswept spot atop the ash heap of history.

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•In the 1850s, William Lloyd Garrison and Thomas Garett were among the white abolitionists who helped former slave Harriet Tubman guide 300-plus Southern Blacks north to freedom via the Underground Railroad.

•Inspired, in part, by former slave Frederick Douglass’ moral case for abolition, Republican President Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation in 1863. The Union Army crushed the Confederacy and slayed slavery in 1865. Human cost: 364,511 Northern fatalities, predominantly white. Southern deaths: 260,000. 

•In 1901, Republican President Theodore Roosevelt invited to dinner in the White House former slave and Tuskegee University founder Booker T. Washington, the first Black man so honored. That era’s Republicans pushed a federal anti-lynching law. Alas, filibustering Democrats defeated them.

•In the mid-1930s, white impresario John Hammond promoted Count Basie, Fletcher Henderson, and other Black jazz greats among white audiences. "I heard no color line in the music," Hammond wrote. "To bring recognition to the Negro’s supremacy in jazz was the most effective and constructive form of social protest I could think of." Benny Goodman integrated his band when he hired pianist Teddy Wilson and vibraphonist Lionel Hampton, both Black. 

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•Branch Rickey, the Brooklyn Dodgers’ white co-owner, signed Jackie Robinson in April 1948 as Major League Baseball’s first Black player. Rickey admired Robinson’s stoicism, which helped him endure the abuse of racists on and off the field. His calm, elegance, and athletic prowess turned foes into fans.

•Walter F. White, the NAACP’s Black chief, was among those who persuaded white Democrat President Harry Truman to integrate the U.S. Armed Forces in July 1948.

•In 1954’s Brown v. Board of Education decision, GOP-nominated Chief Justice Earl Warren and eight other white jurists endorsed Black civil rights attorney Thurgood Marshall’s argument that racially segregated schools were unconstitutional.

•The Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and other Black civil-rights pioneers encouraged white senators Everett Dirksen, R-Ill. and Hubert Humphrey, D-Minn. to foil a filibuster by Sen. Robert Byrd of West Virginia and other Democrat segregationists and pass the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Democrat President Lyndon Johnson signed it into law. Jews worked especially closely with King on this and other triumphs for equal justice under law. 

•Richard Loving, a white husband, and Mildred, his Black wife, sued to scrap the law against interracial marriage. In 1967, the Supreme Court’s Loving v. Virginia ruling unanimously shredded anti-miscegenation statutes in that commonwealth and beyond.

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•Republican President Richard Milhous Nixon worked with Black civil rights leaders to initiate the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the Philadelphia Plan, and other affirmative-action initiatives in the early 1970s.

•Coretta Scott King, Dr. King’s widow, peered over Republican President Ronald Wilson Reagan’s shoulder as he signed the MLK national holiday into law in 1983. Reagan also reauthorized the Voting Rights Act of 1965 for 25 years and made Colin Powell America’s first Black National Security Advisor.

•Legendary white music executive Clive Davis made multi-millionaires of Miles Davis; Earth, Wind & Fire, Whitney Houston, and numerous other Black artists. They, in turn, made millions for his record labels. Worldwide, fans cheered.

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•Early this millennium, Republican President George W. Bush, appointed Colin Powell and Condoleezza Rice as America’s first two Black secretaries of state, launched Washington, D.C.’s school voucher program, and reauthorized the Voting Rights Act through 2031.

•Manhattan real-estate magnate Daniel Rose and his wife Joanna founded the Harlem Educational Activities Fund in 1990. This privately run after-school program tutors, mentors, counsels, and otherwise enriches low-income students. HEAF participants are 90 percent Black or Hispanic. Among them, 100 percent graduate high school on time (versus 67 percent of Gotham’s typical Black students), 98 percent enter college (57 percent in NYC), 83 percent earn baccalaureates within six years (26 percent among U.S. Blacks), and 35 percent advance to graduate school (9.4 percent for U.S. Blacks). HEAF alumni practice law, medicine, manage businesses, and serve America in uniform — never mind the poverty that most escaped.

•Manhattan real-estate magnate Donald J. Trump worked as president with the heads of Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) to secure a steady stream of federal aid for those campuses. He reauthorized and guaranteed $45 million in fresh funds for D.C. vouchers. President Trump worked with Black activists to enact the First Step Act criminal justice reform measure and huddled with Sen. Tim Scott, R-S. C., who is Black, to revitalize 8,764 low-income Opportunity Zones, whose residents are 57 percent non-white, including 23 percent who are Black.

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Beyond these high-profile examples, tens of millions of unsung whites and Blacks work, play, worship, and live together — if not in pristine harmony then at least in sincere attempts to achieve that ideal.

These centuries of white-Black cooperation confirm that CRT is a gargantuan, nauseating lie. America’s rich, unfolding history of interracial collaboration for freedom, justice, and opportunity affirmatively answers the late Rodney King’s immortal question: "Can we all get along?"

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