Texas House Bill 20


Salome Torres, Editor in Chief

Texas House Bill 20, also known as the “Critical Race Theory” (CRT) bill, has sparked controversy and debate in the state and beyond. The bill, which was signed into law by Governor Greg Abbott on June 15, 2021, bans the teaching of CRT in Texas public schools and universities.

CRT is an academic concept that examines the role of race and racism in society, institutions, and laws. It is an interdisciplinary field that draws from legal studies, sociology, history, and other disciplines to study the ways in which race intersects with power and privilege.

Opponents of CRT argue that it is a divisive and harmful ideology that promotes racial essentialism and encourages discrimination against certain groups. Supporters, on the other hand, argue that CRT is a valuable tool for understanding the impact of systemic racism and promoting equity and justice.

The text of House Bill 20 prohibits the teaching of “an individual, by virtue of the individual’s race or sex, is inherently racist, sexist, or oppressive, whether consciously or unconsciously” and from requiring or compelling teachers to discuss controversial current events or social issues. The bill also establishes a procedure for parents or guardians to file a complaint if they believe a teacher has violated these provisions.

Supporters of the bill argue that it is necessary to prevent the teaching of divisive and harmful ideas in Texas classrooms. They believe that CRT promotes a victim mentality and teaches students to view the world through a lens of race, rather than as individuals.

Opponents of the bill argue that it is an attempt to whitewash history and suppress important conversations about race and racism. They argue that CRT is a valuable tool for understanding the ways in which systemic racism has impacted marginalized communities and that prohibiting its teaching in college is a form of censorship.

Critics of the bill also argue that it is overly broad and could potentially lead to the censorship of other critical academic concepts and discussions. They say that the bill’s prohibition on discussing controversial current events or social issues could limit teachers’ ability to engage students in critical thinking and discussion.

The debate around Texas House Bill 20 is reflective of a larger national conversation about the role of race and racism in society, and the ways in which it should be taught in college. As the issue continues to be debated, it is important for educators, policymakers, and community members to engage in respectful and open dialogue about how best to promote equity and justice in our schools and beyond.