Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves is calling for the state legislature to prohibit the teaching of critical race theory in taxpayer-funded classrooms.
"There has been a push from radical leftists across the nation to teach children a vicious lie: that this country is fundamentally racist and that your skin color makes you inherently racist," the governor said in his Fiscal Year 2023 Executive Budget Recommendation.
"Those two core principles form the foundation of a philosophy known as Critical Race Theory. It is destructive to young children. It runs contrary to basic history. It is purely propaganda for a group that wants to accumulate power by dividing American children into victims and oppressors. Elite power-seekers want to be seen as saviors, so they attempt to divide, humiliate, and indoctrinate our children.
"There is nothing wrong with teaching the truth about America's successes and our sins. We must not, however, allow the creeping influence of Critical Race Theory to undermine our children's educations. Mississippi should, in the coming session, pass legislation to prevent these destructive lies from being taught in any classroom funded by the taxpayers," Reeves said.
Reeves, a Republican, has served as the state's governor since early 2020.
The topic of critical race theory has become an area of significant debate in the U.S., as some Americans have sounded the alarm on some of the material being taught to school children.
But American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten has claimed that critical race theory is not taught at elementary or high schools.
"Let's be clear: critical race theory is not taught in elementary schools or high schools. It's a method of examination taught in law school and college that helps analyze whether systemic racism exists—and, in particular, whether it has an effect on law and public policy," she said. "But culture warriors are labeling any discussion of race, racism or discrimination as CRT to try to make it toxic. They are bullying teachers and trying to stop us from teaching students accurate history."