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COMMENTARY: Hispanic voters outraged about CRT turn to Youngkin
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COMMENTARY: Hispanic voters outraged about CRT turn to Youngkin

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PHOTO: Parents protest

Parents in Loudoun County, Va., protest the teaching of critical race theory in the public schools at a Loudoun School Board meeting in June 2021.

INDEPENDENCE Day should be the most celebrated day in the nation. But with the announcement that the National Education Association, the nation’s largest teacher’s union, plans to promote critical race theory and rewrite American history in schools across the nation, it may never be again.

As voters are becoming more engaged, such concerns are being discussed throughout the commonwealth, including with Virginia’s Republican gubernatorial candidate, Glenn Youngkin, for whom CRT, law enforcement, and job creation remain key election issues for November.

I’m one of the volunteer co-chairmen of the Latinos for Youngkin Coalition, which was recently launched in Northern Virginia. Youngkin has gone on record to Hispanic leaders stating that when he’s elected governor, “CRT would have no place in Virginia.”

In contrast, Youngkin’s Democratic opponent, former Governor and Clinton crony Terry McAuliffe, has minimized the impact of CRT. “The Macker” is keeping to the Democratic playbook, calling CRT another “right-wing conspiracy.”

But the CRT Marxist oppressor/oppressed racial mindset advanced by Democrats nationwide has outraged proud Virginians of Hispanic descent who respect assimilation with diversity.

In Loudoun County, Virginians remain outraged over news that taxpayers there were billed $34,000 for 55 hours of CRT coaching on “White Individualism” and “Color Group Collectivism.”

So it was refreshing to hear Youngkin, the retired co-CEO of the Carlyle Group—who with wife Suzanne founded the non-profit Virginia Ready Initiative that focuses on helping the unemployed with job training— responding to this latest form of educational outreach.

For decades, such attempts to engage that were made to Republican Party of Virginia officials fell on deaf ears. That’s why conservatives lost the governor’s mansion to Democrats year after year, and deservedly so.

Comfortable in cowboy boots and casual attire, Youngkin spoke to concerns from Hispanic independents, conservatives and even Democrats who gathered to meet a candidate who shared their values. He reiterated his support for protecting law enforcement personnel over concerns about qualified immunity affecting retention.

Virginia’s State Police Superintendent Gary Settle says that 330 trooper vacancy positions in 2021 are clearly affecting public safety, at a cost of $68.7 million lost in attrition over the last five years.

Most Virginia Latinos agree that teaching our children and grandchildren that people should not to be ostracized for the level of melanin in their skin is responsible parenting, not a racial conspiracy.

But CRT and the attempt to force feed our school children ideology over the historical understanding promoted in other controversial programs such as the 1619 Project has Hispanic leaders like Stafford’s Katherine Barrera, the parent of seven children, greatly concerned.

“We want our children cognizant of history, warts and all, but not seeing history rewritten for personal political gain,” Barrera stated.

Credit Hartwood Supervisor Gary Snellings for planning to place the contentious issue of CRT on the Stafford Board of Supervisors’ next meeting docket for discussion. Snelling states that he’s had enough and demands answers on CRT from the school administration.

Community leaders are also taking issue with those attempting to misrepresent Hispanic identification by renaming our community with the political neologism Latinx, rather than the existing terms of Latino, Latina or Hispanic, which remains inclusive of all sexes and ideological mindsets.

Then there’s patriotism under assault again by the disgusting action of athletes protesting the national anthem during the Olympic trials, fueling the racial divide in Virginia’s gubernatorial race.

Youngkin has stated that his campaign goals are to promote the American Dream for every Virginian by creating good-paying jobs and more opportunities for students to receive a quality education, and expanding access to affordable health care and veteran’s care.

Emphasis on the words “every Virginian” by Youngkin contrasts with McAuliffe, who goes on record campaigning by identifying voters by sexuality, race, gender or economic status.

Personally, I find it insulting how dismissive Democrats like McAuliffe remain over the troubling conduct from violent factions of Black Lives Matter in Virginia and around the nation, while encouraging public officials to defund law enforcement.

And are we refusing to acknowledge racial shaming by teaching CRT in our schools, but advancing it through “social equity” programs? Virginians need to know.

As the troubling CRT issue is hitting home for more Hispanics, they—like all voters in Virginia—must decide who best can stop the ongoing attempts to cause racial division.

It appears that Youngkin, a new political face who is promoting genuine outreach with unity, not forced CRT in our schools, has growing momentum within the Hispanic community.

Daniel P. Cortez is a Stafford resident, presidential appointee, political writer and broadcaster who serves as the volunteer co-chairman of the Latinos for Youngkin Coalition.

Daniel P. Cortez is a Stafford resident, presidential appointee, political writer and broadcaster who serves as the volunteer co-chairman of the Latinos for Youngkin Coalition. 

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