As school districts and universities across the state continue implementing divisive critical race theory (CRT) policies, the University of Texas at Arlington (UTA) is requiring freshmen to complete assignments on privilege and oppression.

One activity, “Two Sides of the Same Coin,” informed students about the difference between oppression and privilege. The assignment defined privilege as when “some people receive benefits or advantages because they belong to a particular identity group or have certain dimensions to their identity.”

There are many types of privilege. For example, a person who does not use a wheelchair has privilege when it comes to accessing buildings, and religious privilege may include automatically having a day off for a religious holiday you celebrate. Once you recognize your privileges, you can choose to use it to be an ally and help make your community more inclusive and equitable for others.

Another activity explained three different “Types of Power,” including coercive/reward power, social power, and referent power.

The assignment also promoted LGBT behaviors, including an activity instructing students to identify why a classmate’s comments about church attendance upset an LGBT student.

Additionally, one quiz question asked students to consider this scenario: “You’ve enrolled in a history course this semester and notice the experience of the LGBTQIA+ community was not taught to you before your undergraduate studies. Why might this be?” One potential answer to this question stated, “History is frequently told through the lens of those in charge rather than those from marginalized identity groups.”

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

UTA recently created an Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion to raise the “collective consciousness, awareness, and understanding of the UTA community in areas relating to social justice, diversity, equity, and inclusion.” The university also promised to include more CRT materials in undergraduate courses.

“The University is immediately incorporating curriculum focused on identity, privilege, bias and oppression that will be delivered to new students for the Fall 2020 semester. A task force has been formed with membership from across the University, to further develop curriculum focused on social justice and equity, that will be delivered to all new students.”

Grassroots activist Carlos Turcios highlighted how many taxpayer-funded universities continue promoting critical race theory to students at the expense of academics.

Embedding critical theory as a framework for taxpayer funded universities is a problem. Nationwide, students are being indoctrinated to go against basic biology, believe that America is racist, and believe other ludicrous ideas. We need students with skills. Having critical race theory training for students provides no skills that will help with the workforce. Rather, it just radicalizes them with nihilism and despair.

With Texas’ next legislative session less than four months away, Turcios called on lawmakers to take action against universities spreading divisive ideologies.

“Republicans in Austin need to withhold all funding for public universities that have critical race theory as a requirement,” said Turcios.

Katy Marshall

Katy graduated from Tarleton State University in 2021 after majoring in history and minoring in political science.