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Members of the organization “Moms for Liberty” in Williamson County, Tennessee, were threatened with legal action after expressing concerns about the Critical Race Theory curriculum indoctrination imposed in public schools in kindergarten through 5th grade. This was reported in The Federalist.
Although the state of Tennessee has already legislated against the propagation of Critical Race Theory in schools, certain schools continue to promote the idea that some individuals are oppressed and others are oppressors, that America is fundamentally racist, or that a person is inherently privileged or disadvantaged because of their skin color.
A team of more than 30 mothers in Williamson County, led by former Air Force B-1 pilot Robin Steenmann, undertook an in-depth review of the curriculum in their children’s books. In their content they found typical Critical Race Theory themes such as cannibalism, “inherently white” racism, suicidal ideation, sexual content, extremist emotions, graphic death and anti-American sentiments.
The group expressed particular concern about images of seahorses having sex, children fantasizing about suicide, and singling out all whites as the enemy. It goes so far as to compare white people to a plague, saying they are “locusts and will devour us.”
The curriculum, which is called Wit & Wisdom and is published by Great Minds, is used in at least one district or school in all 50 states, according to its spokesman.
After posting images of the curriculum on Facebook in a 166-page presentation prepared by her organization to warn other parents, Steenman was contacted by Chad Colby, the publisher’s senior director of communications, who warned her about the copyright infringement.
“With this email, Great Minds is communicating informally to ask that you remove all copyrighted material you have posted. We ask that you avoid involving lawyers in the process. Parents and citizens who wish to view the copyrighted material may contact the school district or their school,” Colby wrote. The email requested that all content be removed within a few days so that “legal action” would not become “necessary.”
Interviewed by The Federalist, Steenman contends that Section 107 of the Copyright Act allows for “commentary and criticism” of protected materials.
“I think it was kind of a scare tactic because I think we’re fully within our rights to share the teacher’s manual the way we’ve been doing it,” Steenman told The Federalist. “If you’re trying to hide the teacher’s manual from the public and from parents, that speaks poorly of your curriculum. What are they trying to hide? We’re not reproducing it commercially or teaching from it. It is strictly within U.S. Code 107 for commentary and criticism.”
“Wit & Wisdom never passed state review, it failed twice,” Steenman said. “And then the Department of Education simply overturned the failed review and granted waivers to bring it to 33 counties in Tennessee.”
Steenman and Moms for Liberty are the first to file a formal complaint with authorities against Wit & Wisdom, relying on legislation against Critical Race Theory that went into effect July 1.