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Forum on CRT and GRT, August 18 at Incanto Vallarta

Puerto Vallarta, Mexico – Summer is the time many expatriates living in this part of Mexico make a trip North of The Border [NOTB] to see family and do in person what is difficult to do remotely.

Those who have severely limited travel during the COVID surges may be surprised with some terms recently injected into many conversations and demonstrations there. “Critical Race Theory” [CRT] and the “Great Replacement Theory” [GRT] are two hot ones! Where do these terms come from and what do they mean today?

The Costa Banderas Chapter of Democrats Abroad Mexico will address these questions in a forum open to all on Thursday, August 18 from 5:00-7:00 pm at Incanto Vallarta’s newly restored theater (Insurgentes 109, Col. Emiliano Zapata, 48380).

Paul Crist, a Puerto Vallarta business owner and former economist who worked in public policy and politics in Washington DC for years, provides an introductory description of these two terms.

What is Critical Race Theory?

Critical Race Theory is an academic and legal framework that explains how systemic racism is, and has always been, inextricably intertwined within United States society. It lays out the deeply discriminatory facts found in public policies and social attitudes since before the founding of the USA. CRT examines policies and practices in education, housing, employment, healthcare and more. It recognizes that racism, and its effects on the lives of people of color, is more than the result of individual bias and prejudice. It is embedded in laws, policies and institutions that uphold and reproduce racial inequalities.

The study of the theory effectively began with Harvard Law Professor Derrick Albert Bell Jr. in the mid-1970s. It remains a law school and graduate school study to the extent that it is examined academically. In the past few years, the term “critical race theory” has been co-opted by its opponents as rallying cry to silence any discussions about systemic racism and to ban the truthful teaching of American history. The term has been unjustifiably used to include all diversity and inclusion efforts, race-conscious policies, and education about racism, whether or not they actually draw from CRT.

What is “Great Replacement Theory?”

The “Great Replacement Theory” has been around in the US since the late 19th century. It asserts the existence of an active, ongoing and covert effort to replace white populations in currently white-majority countries. While the current name was not specifically used in decades past, it has deep roots in both US and European modern history.

The ideas underpinning GRT were behind racial quota system becoming federal immigration law in the US for four decades beginning in 1924. It was also the driving argument behind the eugenics movement and forced sterilization laws that passed in 31 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. It continues today and has been identified in the online manifestos of mass shooters, including the recent case in which shoppers in a Buffalo NY grocery store were gunned down.

Like CRT, GRT has become part of the ongoing dialogue NOTB in 2022, although often less explicitly identified online and in cable programs.

With country committees and local chapters in over 80 countries around the world, Democrats Abroad is the official Democratic Party organization for the millions of Americans living outside the United States. For more information about the Costa Banderas Chapter of Democrats Abroad, contact Vice-Chair Glenda Bland at gbland101(at)gmail.com, or 322-139-2933.

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