According to a new report from the Daily Caller, President Barack Obama's favorite topic to teach at the University of Chicago was -- are you sitting down? -- "Current Issues in Racism and the Law." The President taught this course no less than 12 times during his 12 years at the university, while teaching two other courses eight and six times.
And if you're wondering what the course name means, have no fear. Reporter Charles C. Johnson has uncovered this course description:
Note the assumption on the part of the course description writer (as Johnson points out, probably Obama himself) that institutional racism not only exists, but continues to plague the American legal system. From the Daily Caller report:
New York Times reporter Jody Kantor released other materials from the course in 2008 showing that Obama taught Bell’s work, in particular Bell’s interpretations of seminal civil rights case law.
An August 2012 analysis of the materials Kantor published, co-authored by a University of North Carolina law professor and a law student, suggests that the readings Obama assigned and the group presentation topics he suggested reveal his strong interest in Critical Race Theory, also called CRT.
“[T]he prevalence of presentation questions on the syllabus that were at the center of CRT suggests that Obama had been brought into orbit around key issues in CRT.” Obama, they wrote, also seems to have taught according to “a model set by many CRT scholars,” who prefer alternatives to the traditional Socratic method.[...]
But Obama’s views on the material he was teaching did leak out on occasion. Remnick quoted an unnamed former law student who said Obama supported racial reparations in theory, but found it unworkable in practice.
“He told us what he thought about reparations. He agreed entirely with the theory of reparations. But in practice he didn’t think it was really workable,” the former student said. “You could tell he thought he had let the cat out of the bag and felt uncomfortable.”
This degree of public information about one of the president's academic endeavors may surprise some people. President Obama's college transcripts might remain off-limits to the general public, but one area where his academic career apparently has not been left untouched is his tenure as a lecturer at the University of Chicago Law School. In fact, even since 2008, there has been an abundance of information about President Obama's time as a lecturer, even from sources friendly to the President. For instance, one writer at the New York Times dug up a set of exams Obama used to set.
Granted, the fact that the president was a Leftist from the 1990's through the early 2000's is not news. However, precisely what variety of Leftist orthodoxy he espoused remains an open question. This little factoid may shed some light on that issue.