What is 'White Privilege' training? 'Racist' school teachers asked to acknowledge they meet on 'stolen land'
Teachers serving within the San Diego Unified School District are reportedly required to attend a "White Privilege" training program during which they are told that they are “racist” and also asked to acknowledge that they “meet in a stolen land” taken away from native Americans. Journalist Christopher F Rufo’s documents reveal that the training is mandatory for all teachers within the school district.
As part of the training, the teachers are told to discuss and express their opinion about being called a “racist” and asked how they would feel if they were told, “You are upholding racist ideas, structures, and policies.”
The leaked documents show an example of the material used in the training. One of the segments has “You are Racist” mentioned on the top, followed by two questions; “Try to use 1 word to answer the question: How would this make you feel?” and “What would you want to say to someone who tells you this?”
Furthermore, they were required to “confront and examine white privilege” and reflect on “white fragility”, which talks about “emotions that are stirred when making White people consider racial realities”. The seminar also included a section on “land acknowledgment”.
The acknowledgment was reportedly referring to the Kumeyaay tribe of indigenous people who were forced out of their ancestral lands. They apparently lived on the northern border of Baja California in Mexico and the southern border of California in the US.
According to one of the slides shared by the Daily Mail from the training, the land acknowledgment reads, “We acknowledge that we meet on stolen land, taken from Indigenous peoples. I am speaking to you from Kumeyaay land. We must acknowledge the hidden history of violence against Indigenous peoples in an effort to move towards justice.”
What is ‘white privilege training’ and how did it begin?
‘White privilege training’ is an anti-racism initiative started in the wake of the death of Black man George Floyd. The program was aimed at “eliminating racial injustice in policing and other spheres of American life.”
The training was however condemned by President Donald Trump and he wanted to end racial sensitivity training for federal government employees in September, claiming it is "divisive, anti-American propaganda". He also noted during the first presidential debate that such training teaches people to “hate our country”. Trump said that he wanted to call off the taxpayer-funded seminars on “critical race theory” calling it a “sickness” that cannot be allowed to continue.
Meanwhile, Rufo’s leaked documents further reveal that the sessions at the San Diego Unified School District will begin with the teachers being told that they will experience “guilt, anger, apathy [and] closed-mindedness" because of their ‘white fragility’”. And, the program will be carried out based on the teaching of ‘White Fragility’ authored by Robin DiAngelo and ‘Be Anti-racist: A Journal for Awareness, Reflection and Action’ by Ibram X Kend.