Letter to the Editor: How should students learn DEI?

Dear Editor,

On reading the latest expression of Critical Race Theory in the form of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (or henceforth “DEI”), I was surprised to find the claim that DEI represents core American values.
I found this strange considering “equity” alone seems to have replaced “equality,” at least within the last few years. A seemingly small but very important distinction – equity being a prescriptive social debt system that ranks its members on perceived injustices applied to groups based on characteristics.
In my opinion, every student should have their education custom tailored to their needs as a student, not their characteristics as a human, and “…. not be judged by the color of their skin, but the content of their character,” as a great American once said.
I seem to recall standing to be represented as equals to be an American value. Equity seems almost the opposite.
Diversity is good for salad, but for society it just is. People are different, we respect that, but we treat people fairly, as we’d wish to be treated, despite our differences. America is a nation of many cultures and many people but shared principals. The inherent human rights granted to all human beings as recognized (not granted, important distinction) in the Constitution.
People have always been and will always continue to be different. That’s not special, not important. Instead, we celebrate what people of a shared goal and set of principals can achieve working together despite our differences.
So I can’t understand how “diversity” is considered a core American value.
Inclusion, though, maybe there’s something we can agree on!
When the refugees from the Church of England settled on the coast of Maine, they welcomed assistance from the local tribesmen and in turn were welcomed. The Christian principals of the many initial settlers saw that we were all children of God and welcomed others to break bread at their table.
America was the first nation of free men in a world of tyrannical monarchies, totalitarian dictatorships, and oppressive theocracies. It would lead much of the world by example in early division over slavery to resistance and abolishment, in universal human rights and a citizen-based system, rather than autocratic dictatorial overlords.
Manifest destiny doesn’t stop at “sea to shining sea,” but that freedom of speech, of defense, of privacy and due process are indeed human rights.
Many sought to replicate the feats of the United States and draft their own, similar constitutions.
Anyone is welcome to participate in the American way, and I would agree that is a core American value that should be taught!
Now maybe that’s not what DEI means, but what matters more is how it’s implemented.
Shouldn’t our students be taught to treat others as they wish to be treated? Not to judge by skin-deep characteristics? To be cooperative, united, and forgiving?
If the school districts disagree, then the only option may be chartering private schools where those values are respected.

Steve Sioma

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