Education is an essential aspect of ensuring a progressive and adaptable society. In the United States, education about the country’s past has been an uncomfortable subject, particularly because of the racial conversations that are necessary to encourage a comprehensive understanding of historical events. Unfortunately, because of this division, the teaching of American history has become highly politicized. American history is replete with painful subjects, but avoiding education on these subjects perpetuates the racist ideology that restricts more inclusive education in American society. Moreover, this ideology largely contributes to social unrest which can lead to hatred and violence.
Project 1619 is an initiative of New York Times which strives to frame education around difficult aspects of American history and encourages concepts like critical race theory to combat racism. Project 1619 has been called “propaganda” and is considered controversial because it suggests that one of the main reasons for the American Revolutionary War was to preserve slavery in the American colonies. Of course, historians recognize that other factors contributed to the war, but Project 1619 suggests that America has more to make up for in terms of its racist past, and that students should be exposed to this difficult history. A good education on America’s racist past benefits students of all races, but this revisionist narrative is especially vital for white students to understand. Project 1619 gives educators a space to break down inaccurate interpretations of historical figures, teaching students that American “heroes” might not be the heroes we should admire.
Many American politicians criticize the project and claim that it is an erasure of American history. Senator Cotton of Arkansas proposed a bill to ban education like the one in Project 1619. Cotton’s bill inspired others, including former President Trump, in a crusade to “protect American history. Trump’s 1776 campaign was totally opposed to Project 1619 ideas, refusing to advance the teaching and understanding of American history to incorporate all aspects of the country’s past. But does American history need to be protected, or is our society ready to embark on an educational journey that would encourage inclusiveness and end the cycle of racist ideology?
Currently, US lawmakers are trying to pass bills that would restrict the incorporation of ideas like Project 1619 into the education system. Not only do these efforts prevent educators and students from learning and teaching an accurate narrative of American history, they also allow systemic racism to continue. Education contributes significantly to social attitudes, and when students are unaware of racism in their country’s past, they are less willing to recognize the racist institutions that exist in their lives in the present, which contributes to racism. violent actions motivated by the underlying racism. Additionally, these attempts to restrict American education also undermine historical accuracy, a value that should be a priority for policymakers as it affects how they interpret history in their own professions.
The ability of US lawmakers to restrict access to appropriate, accurate, and progressive education is extremely revealing of the state of the country at this time. The lack of education about America’s racist past is directly correlated with the continued systemic racism that allows lawmakers to block reforms like Project 1619. This seemingly endless cycle perpetuates racist ideology across America. And, the cycle plays into the hands of policymakers who hesitate to adapt the American school curriculum because they fear losing power if new “idealistic” versions of American history are taught.
Education is the basis of progress, not only in America but in any society. However, for Americans in particular, a proper education could make a significant difference in ending the cycle of systemic racism. Over the past year, racially motivated violence has had a terrifying presence in the United States, and many attempts to advocate for racial justice have fallen on deaf ears because the root of the majority of racist ideology lies in a lack of understanding and acceptance. Education has far-reaching capabilities, and it is essential that America enables history teachers to present students with accurate historical accounts. Not only would a good understanding of history improve students ‘abilities to contribute positively to society when they graduate from the school system, but it would also increase students’ enjoyment of history lessons by advocating for it. inclusion. History is not the rigid discipline that some degree programs describe as, and it is important for students to learn to interpret historical events and to see historical figures from different angles. When these changes occur in the classroom, students are more likely to be able to break the cycle of systemic oppression and racism, thereby contributing to a more peaceful and respectful American society.
In order to help end the racist cycle that is allowed to continue due to inappropriate education, teachers should be provided with the resources to teach concepts such as Project 1619. Since Project 1619 is the subject of With continued criticism, not only from disgruntled parents who claim he is “unpatriotic” but also from policy makers in the United States, it is essential that teachers receive the appropriate support to make these changes in the classroom. program. This support could come from school districts and principals who recognize the importance of teaching difficult history. Teachers have the important role of breaking down the racist concepts that currently plague our education system, and it appears that they will need the support of those in positions of authority within the school rather than the government.
When education is threatened, it is because governments see educational change as a threat to the “stability” of the country. Threatening the accuracy of education and suppressing the ability of students to form their own interpretations of historical events is a power held by governments that can lead to social unrest and violence. When education is free, students have a more complete understanding of history and have the ability to articulate peaceful solutions to social problems based on their new understanding of events. It can be considered positive that Project 1619 received so much criticism, as it suggests that the initiative has the power to create real change in the way students perceive their country and the way students act in becoming leaders. active members of society. Understanding America’s racist past is the first step in healing and stopping racist ideology in the present, and education is our primary tool against this systemic racism.