Letter: Why the Fight Against DE&I?

To the Editor:

In Easton and Redding, there is outspoken, bitter opposition to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, to teaching our children about people who are different. I’d like to know why. Whatever happened to “love thy neighbor”?

Is it hatred of minorities and underserved communities?

Is the white majority threatened by people who are different?

Are they afraid of losing their supreme position as top decision-makers in the economy, workforce, medicine, education, government, energy, rural and urban planning, and more?

Is the white majority afraid that honest history, the truth, will expose an unfavorable view of them?

Why do some people in town rail against Critical Race Theory, which is not even taught in the Easton and Redding schools, or at Barlow? Are they just parroting national opinions, rather than learning the truth in our own towns, and asking for a civil dialogue about it?

Many recent Barlow grads have stated, on the record, that they felt unprepared to enter the world. How can they find success if they are not taught about the diverse cultures, ethnicities, gender orientations, and other differences they will encounter? How can they become world leaders without a world view? Why is it okay to give them an incomplete education and hold them back in the future?

A DE&I survey was created to find out how to enrich our children’s education and school environment. To quote the July 25, 2021 Easton Courier, “school board members have repeatedly and publicly asserted that the purpose of the survey is to collect anonymous data and facts from students who choose to participate with parental consent. They say the survey will allow teachers and staff to create a more inclusive learning environment for all students.”

Despite that assertion from our elected officials, 38 residents from both Easton and Redding signed a letter to the July 25, 2021 Easton Courier that “questioned the Social Justice emphasis of our School Boards and particularly the Joint Task Force on Diversity Equity and Inclusion’s DEI surveys.” None of the signers is a member of any of our school boards. Why not, if they are so convinced they know what’s best for our schools?

Why are they so aggressively against Social Justice? What is so wrong with an inclusive learning environment? Why are some people so desperately opposed to DE&I, that they mail unsolicited flyers, send unsolicited texts, and illegally post signs on town property?

What are they so afraid of? Perhaps it’s time, or long overdue, to sit down face-to-face to ask these questions. I’d like to know the answers.

Debbi Barer

19-year Easton Resident

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