The committee formed to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Tulsa Race Massacre announced that it fired Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt from his seat on the panel a week after signing a bill that would teach some bans racing and racism concepts in public schools.
A statement from the committee did not state the reason for the farewell, and a spokeswoman said the committee had no further comment.
However, the committee’s project manager, Phil Armstrong, sharply criticized the Republican governor for signing a law banning the teaching of so-called critical racial theory in Oklahoma schools.
Oklahoma Republican Governor Kevin Stitt Has Been Removed From A Panel Set Up To Observe The 100th Anniversary Of The Tulsa Race Massacre After Banning Critical Race Theory From Schools
A tweet from Governor Kevin Stitt in support of the Op Ed in the Tulsa World of Oklahoma Sec of Education Ryan Walter in support of the passing of the bill banning critical racing theory
“The 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre Centennial Commissioners met on Tuesday and agreed by consensus to bid farewell to Governor Stitt,” the committee’s statement said.
He went on to say that while the committee is “discouraged from saying goodbye to Governor Stitt, we are grateful for the things we have accomplished together.” It also said, “No elected officials, nor representatives of elected officials, were involved in this decision.”
The Republican governor was not informed of his impeachment until the committee issued its statement, Stitt spokeswoman Carly Atchison said.
In June 1921, a white gang killed an estimated 300 people and injured 800 while burning 30 blocks of black businesses and homes and neighborhood churches in the Greenwood Ward, Tulsa.
An African American man with a camera looks at the skeletons of iron beds rising above the ashes of a burned-out block after the Tulsa Race Massacre, Tulsa, Oklahoma, June 1921
Stitt’s role “was purely ceremonial and he was only invited to attend a meeting this week,” her statement said.
The committee was set up to organize events to mark the anniversary of the massacre that took place on May 31 and June 1 in 1921.
A white gang killed an estimated 300 people and injured 800 while burning 30 blocks of black businesses and homes and neighborhood churches in Tulsa’s Greenwood neighborhood, also known as “Black Wall Street.”
CRITICAL RACING THEORY: WHAT DOES IT MEAN?
The struggle for critical racial theory in schools has escalated in the United States over the past year.
The theory has sparked fierce nationwide debate in the wake of last year’s Black Lives Matter protests across the country and the introduction of the 1619 project.
Published by the New York Times in 2019 to mark 400 years since the first enslaved Africans arrived on America’s shores, the 1619 project reshapes American history through “ the consequences of slavery and to place the contributions of black Americans in the center of the US. story’.
The debate surrounding critical race theory concerns the concern that some children are being indoctrinated into thinking that whites are inherently racist or sexist.
Those opposed to critical race theory have argued that it reduces people to the ‘privileged’ or ‘oppressed’ categories based on their skin color.
However, proponents say the theory is vital for eradicating racism as it explores the ways in which race affects American politics, culture and the law.
Planes were even used to drop explosives on the area and burn them to the ground.
In a letter to the governor on Tuesday, Armstrong said the committee was “ deeply disappointed ” that neither Stitt nor a representative chose to attend a meeting Monday night to approve the signing of the GOP-backed legislation on “ critical race theory. ” discuss, which systematically investigates. racism and how race affects American politics, legal systems and society.
One of the concepts that are forbidden is that individuals, on the grounds of race or gender, are inherently racist, sexist, or oppressive, whether consciously or unconsciously.
Earlier this month, Stitt said the US, now more than ever, “needs policies that bring us together, not tear us apart.”
“As a governor, I firmly believe that not a penny of taxpayers’ money should be used to define and divide young Oklahomas by race or gender. That is what this bill supports for public education.
We must continue to teach history and all its complexity and encourage honest and hard conversations about our past. Nothing in this bill prevents or discourages those conversations.
We can and should teach this history without labeling a young child as an oppressor or demanding that he or she feel guilty or ashamed based on their race or gender. I refuse to tolerate otherwise. ‘
One of the concepts that will be banned is that individuals, on the grounds of race or gender, are inherently racist, sexist, or oppressive, whether consciously or unconsciously.
The bill, which will take effect on July 1, also prevents colleges and universities from requiring students to receive training on gender or sexual diversity.
Armstrong had said that Stitt’s signing of the bill on May 7 was “diametrically opposed to the mission of the Centennial Commission and reflects your desire to end your membership.”
Atchison rejected the committee’s decision in its statement on Friday.
“It is disappointing to see such an important organization go to such lengths to sow disunity based on falsehoods and political rhetoric, two weeks before its centenary and a month before the committee was due to disappear,” her statement said.
Another committee member, State Representative Monroe Nichols of Tulsa, resigned from the panel on Tuesday over Stitt’s signing of the bill, saying it “cast an ugly shadow on the phenomenal work done over the past five years.”
The committee has developed and promoted programs, events and activities to commemorate the 1921 massacre and to commemorate its victims.
Events include ‘Greenwood: An American Dream Destroyed,’ a month-long presentation this weekend, and ‘Greenwood Rising: The Black Wall Street History Center,’ which will be unveiled on June 2.
Three Republican-led states have now signed laws banning critical racial theory in public schools, and nearly a dozen others are currently trying to pass similar bills that block or restrict them from being part of curricula.
There is currently a national debate on critical race theory.
Critics say the theory reduces people to the ‘privileged’ or ‘oppressed’ categories based on their skin color.
However, defenders argue that the theory examines the ways in which race and racism influence American politics, culture and the law, and say it is essential to eradicate racism.
Oklahoma law is similar to measures signed by law in Utah and Arkansas. Another similar measure recently stalled in Louisiana, but the author has said he plans to revive it.
Tennessee and Arizona have also entered similar bills.
The South Dakota government, Kristi Noem, recently signed a bill that opposes the teaching of critical race theory. And Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton also recently said that parents should oppose the theory.
THE 1921 TULSA RACE RIOT: AN ATTACK ON GREENWOOD
After World War I, Tulsa was recognized for its affluent African-American community known as the Greenwood District.
The community was often referred to as the ‘Black Wall Street’ for its thriving business and residential area.
But in June 1921, the community was nearly destroyed in the Tulsa Race Riot.
The events leading to the riot began on May 30, 1921, when a young black man named Dick Rowland was riding in the elevator with a woman named Sarah Page.
The details of what followed vary from person to person and it is unclear what actually happened.
During the Tulsa Riot, 35 city blocks were completely destroyed and more than 800 people were treated for injuries. Historians believe that as many as 300 people were killed in the riot
Rowland was arrested the next day by the Tulsa police.
Subsequently, a report in the Tulsa Tribune on May 31, 1921, began a showdown between black and white gunmen at the courthouse.
Shots were fired and the African Americans withdrew to the Greenwood District.
In the early morning hours of June 1, 1921, Greenwood was looted and burned by white rioters.
Governor Robertson declared martial law and National Guard troops were called to Tulsa.
During the riot, 35 city blocks were completely destroyed and more than 800 people were treated for injuries.
Historians believe that as many as 300 people were killed in the riot.
In 2001 the Race Riot Commission was organized to review the details of the deadly riot.