• July 29, 2021

Exclusive: Nasty Nightline Accuses Parents Protesting CRT Of Enabling Racism, Whitewashing History

 Exclusive: Nasty Nightline Accuses Parents Protesting CRT Of Enabling Racism, Whitewashing History


ABC’s Nightline opened Thursday night’s show with an awfully one-sided portrayal of the debate over Critical Race Theory being taught in schools. Host Juju Chang and reporter Alex Presha deliberately lied about CRT’s critics’ goals while blaming parents as responsible for enabling racist incidents in schools.

While footage of angry parents around the country speaking out at school board meetings played, Chang deceived viewers, saying parents were against teaching about America’s past. “But not everyone wants race history in the classroom,” she touted.

 

 

Reporter Alex Presha spoke to one family in support of more race-based teaching in schools, and one parent against it. But as Chang’s introduction hinted, his report painted anti-CRT parents as the villains of the story. 

Presha claimed anti-CRT parents were against equality. After whining about Fox News “fueling” the controversy and Republicans warning about the toxic teaching, ABC News contributor Leah Wright-Rigueur constructed her own strawman about the right’s “bogeyman:” [click expand]

ALEX PRESHA:  As parents, teachers, and administrators clash over the use of critical race theory to teach about racism — 

PARENT:  Both my 8-year-old and 16-year-old sons have been targets of racial hate. 

PRESHA: And efforts to make education more equitable for all. Critical race theory is an academic framework that was created over 40 years ago to explore how America’s history of racism and white supremacy is still embedded in its institutions. 

[clips of Fox News, Republican Kevin McCarthy warning about CRT]

ABC NEWS CONTRIBUTOR LEAH WRIGHT-RIGUEUR: Critical race theory has become a catch-all, a real bogeyman under which we can lump ideas of race and racism. But also under which we can censor, broadly censor, any kind of conversation around race, around racism, around inequality, around diversity. 

To support this notion, Presha showcased a Texas family whose son was the target of a cruel racist incident from classmates over social media. The mother warned that those against more race-based teaching in schools had enabled this kind of vile behavior:

PRESHA: Chris’ mother, Myoshi Johnson, says talking about racism and this country’s history is crucial. 

MIOSHI JOHNSON: The division comes from not knowing, not being aware. You know, not having someone to, you know, tell you or teach you. When you take that away you have instances of teenage boys saying, slave trade, slave auction, slave farm. Because no one’s taught them. 

But parents with opposing views were not allowed to share their stories. Once he got around to speaking to a Loudoun County mother working to fight CRT in schools, the reporter dismissed her as against “equality.” He sneered “She’s now on the front lines fighting the steps the district is making to address inequality in its schools.” How is that fair and neutral reporting?

Instead of talking about what’s actually in the curriculum that parents are fighting, Presha pivoted to giving a Loudoun County public school teacher, who uses her Twitter account to mock these parents, ample time to bash her county for not having done enough to experience its own “racial reckoning.” 

He ended his report by lamenting how the Juneteenth would be “harder” to learn in the above Texas teen’s school because Texas was one of many states where Republicans were passing laws “restricting or banning classroom discussions of concepts relating to race and racism.”

Rather than falsely characterizing concerned parents as ignorant bigots who enable racist hate, ABC could report on the real vitriol and hatred coming directly out of the mouths of Loudoun’s neighboring Fairfax County public school system officials who just recently publicly attacked parents against CRT with the violent message, “I hope they die.

Read the relevant transcript portions below:

Nightline

7/16/2021

JUJU CHANG:  But not everyone wants race history in the classroom. 

CHANG: Critical race theory is not a new concept. It’s been around for decades. But it’s now at the heart of a fiery debate. On the heels of last year’s racial reckoning over how the nation’s racial history is going to be taught in our schools. 

ALEX PRESHA:  As parents, teachers, and administrators clash over the use of critical race theory to teach about racism — 

PARENT:  Both my 8-year-old and 16-year-old sons have been targets of racial hate. 

PRESHA: And efforts to make education more equitable for all. Critical race theory is an academic framework that was created over 40 years ago to explore how America’s history of racism and white supremacy is still embedded in its institutions. 

ABC NEWS CONTRIBUTOR LEAH WRIGHT-RIGUEUR: Critical race theory has become a catch-all, a real bogeyman under which we can lump ideas of race and racism. But also under which we can censor, broadly censor, any kind of conversation around race, around racism, around inequality, around diversity. 

PRESHA: But Texas is now one of at least 26 states that have proposed or passed laws restricting or banning classroom discussions of concepts relating to race and racism that Republican lawmakers say are divisive. 

WRIGHT-RIGUEUR: When you look at these states that have banned critical race theory, they’re banning the study of race and racism in America. And they are banning anything that essentially upsets this idea that America is this perfect, united place. 

PRESHA: But perhaps nowhere else has the issue of race and education been more explosive than Loudoun county, Virginia. Patti Menders and her husband have a blended family of six boys. Three went to school in Loudoun. 

MENDERS: We are here because we care. We care about our children. 

PRESHA: She’s now on the front lines fighting the steps the district is making to address inequality in its schools. 

PRESHA Loudoun was one of the last counties in the nation to desegregate its schools. Many believe the legacy of that is still apparent. Last year the school board 

apologized to the black community of Loudoun county for decades of unequal treatment. 

ANDREA WEISKOPF, LCPS: Loudoun county has not had its reckoning. I would love to tell you about all the wonderful things in Loudoun county. But we need to address the systemic racism that those of us who are white unfortunately haven’t seen. 

PRESHA: Teacher Andrea Weiskopf believes Loudoun county schools should do more to combat racism. When you say that Loudoun county hasn’t had its reckoning, what are you talking about? 

WEISKOPF:  People like to think the civil rights movement is done. But we need to remember this started in 1619. And Loudoun was built with enslaved labor. In the 1970s there was one public swimming pool in Leesburg. And rather than integrate, the swimming pool, it was filled in with concrete. 

PRESHA: Back in Texas, Chris and his mother are celebrating Juneteenth, honoring their ancestors and their part in American history. Those stories now harder to learn in his school. 





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