HB 377 would prohibit schools from compelling students to “affirm, adopt, or adhere” to the following tenets (i) That any sex, race, ethnicity, religion, color, or national origin is inherently superior or inferior; (ii) That individuals should be adversely treated on the basis of their sex, race, ethnicity, religion, color, or national origin; (iii) That individuals, by virtue of sex, race, ethnicity, religion, color, or national origin, are inherently responsible for actions committed in the past by other members of the same sex, race, ethnicity, religion, color, or national origin.”
HB 377 provides that it is the intent of the Idaho legislature to “respect the dignity of others, acknowledge the right of others to express differing opinions, and foster and defend intellectual honesty, freedom of inquiry and instruction, and freedom of speech and association.” The bill later states that critical race theory undermines those objectives and “inflame[s]” divisions on the basis of sex, race, ethnicity, religion, color, national origin, or other criteria in ways contrary to the “unity of the nation and the well-being of the state of Idaho and its citizens.”
This bill shows a fundamental misunderstanding of Critical Race Theory. There are already nondiscrimination statutes in place to protect students from discrimination. The vague language of the statute only serves to further chill and censor discourse about implicit bias and racism and sexism in public schools and institutions.