President Trump signed an executive order Monday designed to promote what he called “patriotic education” and to push back on the idea that the country is “irredeemably and systemically racist.”
The order includes having a two-year “1776 Commission” publish a report on the core principles of the nation, and advise the federal government on how to prioritize founding principles in grants and other activities.
“Without our common faith in the equal right of every individual American to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, authoritarian visions of government and society could become increasingly alluring alternatives to self-government based on the consent of the people,” the executive order reads.
The order follows a broader controversy surrounding how schools, the federal government, and others have adopted critical race theory, or diversity trainings that the administration has deemed racially divisive.
JOSH HAWLEY CALLS ON CONGRESS TO INVESTIGATE ‘CRITICAL RACE THEORY’ TRAINING SCANDAL AFTER TRUMP’S EXECUTIVE ORDER
In September, the administration ordered federal agencies to cease these types of trainings for federal employees after explosive internal documents were published by researcher Chris Rufo. For example, some of these concepts came up during the “White Men’s Caucus” reportedly held for Sandia’s white male executives in 2019.
Rufo also published information on a series of other trainings that were eventually shuttered by administration leadership.
Those types of events seemed to intensify amid the racially charged protests that swept the nation this summer. Proponents generally argue that diversity training helps people understand how their implicit biases affect others in the workplace and other locations.
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M.E. Hart, an attorney who has conducted diversity training sessions for businesses and the federal government, told The Washington Post that it also can improve morale, cooperation and efficiency.
“If we are going to live up to this nation’s promise — ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal’ — we have to see each other as human beings, and we have to do whatever it takes, including taking whatever classes make that possible,” Hart told the Post. “These classes have been very powerful in allowing people to do that, and we need them more than ever. There’s danger here.”
Fox News’ Adam Shaw contributed to this report.