Opinion: American Christianity, Not CRT, Makes Kids Feel Guilty

Walter Rhein

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The concept of critical race theory (CRT) has been dominating the news cycle lately. Unfortunately, almost all the people shooting off their mouths about it are uneducated and ignorant on the subject. CRT has become a political firebrand that has nothing to do with the academic purpose of the concept.

It’s unfortunate when dishonest actors try to earn political points by denouncing responsible concepts. At some point, most Americans have to look themselves in the mirror and ask, “Why does the idea of anti-racism activism make me uncomfortable?”

The argument that CRT makes children feel “guilty” is nonsensical to the point of being laughable. There’s nothing in CRT that should make anyone feel guilty. You might feel empathy for the individuals who have been oppressed and exploited in the past. That would be a normal human reaction. But it’s foolish to conflate that reaction with guilt.

The hypocritical part of this conversation is that the majority of people lambasting CRT are those who falsely claim that prayer has been banned from schools. If these people are apprehensive about institutions that make children feel “guilty” then they should look to Christianity.

The whole Christian religion is designed to make you feel guilty about everything. On top of that, the Christian religion bullies children with threats of eternal torment. These actions are exponentially worse than anything that might result from the discussion of an academic theory that’s not even taught in K-12 schools.

It is divisive to the nation when entitled groups are allowed to openly break our anti-discrimination laws without consequence. Christianity does not allow women to be ordained, therefore they are blocked from achieving seats of power within that organization. That’s a case of blatant gender discrimination.

Many Christian organizations also engage in blatant hate speech against the LGBTQ community. They spread lies about “grooming” even though arrest statistics show that true child groomers are most often members of the religious community.

Every time a Christian authority figure talks about sin in any form, it makes children feel guilty. That’s the purpose of it. It’s an effort to crush a child’s confidence and make them obedient. This is why sacred concepts are often used as weapons by fascist regimes. Religion trains the population to be obedient to a central authority figure.

It’s a shame that the American news cycle is dominated by completely fabricated attacks against CRT. Any suggestion that CRT makes children feel “guilty” is just a lie that has been launched in the pursuit of political power.

If we were really worried about institutions that make our children feel guilty, we would have some honest discussions about Christianity. Too often in our country, Christianity is a source of hate rather than healing.

When was the last time you went to church and listened to an anti-racism lecture? I’ve personally contacted the pastors in my community to entreat them to become more active in the fight against racism. They refuse to do it.

Instead, they’d make my kids feel guilty because of the days of the week when they choose to eat meat. I find it odd that the people in our society who are outraged about everything never object to religious-based impositions on our freedoms.

CRT doesn’t make children feel guilty any more than learning the Pythagorean theorem. Anyone who truly feels that our children shouldn’t be made to feel guilty needs to turn his or her attention to Christianity. Claiming that CRT is harmful to our kids while ignoring the transgressions of religion is an act of blatant deceit.

Lying is also supposed to be a sin. I wish American Christians would practice what they preach and try honesty for a change.

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Walter Rhein is an author with Perseid Press. He also does a weekly column for The Writing Cooperative on Medium.

Chippewa Falls, WI

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