Melanie Sturm's opinion piece (July 3, "Is Systemic Racism the Right Diagnosis?") mischaracterized what Critical Race Theory is, as well as the writings of authors she mentioned. Her criticisms parroted political strategies used by some to divide.
Sturm assumes authors “advocate for the abandonment of our ‘created equal’ premise and the dreams it spawned.” The case is quite the opposite. The authors say the “created equal” premise is only true for some of us. Others have had our dreams partially obstructed. One of the major obstructions is systemic racism.
"Systemic racism is a form of racism that has been embedded through laws and regulations, in society or organizations. It can lead to issues in criminal justice, employment, housing, healthcare, education and political power, among other things," according to a 2020 New York Times article.
We should be teaching our children that they're created both equal and different and valued just the way they are. However, that is not the reality of the world for any of us, and even less so for those affected by systemic racism. We have a responsibility to teach children and ourselves how we perpetuated this system. Even more importantly, we all have a responsibility to fix the unjust systemic obstructions so everyone has an equal opportunity for life, liberty and justice.
Yes, systemic racism is the right diagnosis, as it has been for hundreds of years. We have to deal with what is real and stop taking the bait of division.