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Cotton introduces bill to ban critical race theory training in the military

Cotton says critical race theory (CRT) "has no place in our military."

Updated: March 26, 2021 - 1:19pm

The Facts Inside Our Reporter’s Notebook

Arkansas Republican Sen. Tom Cotton introduced legislation to ban critical race theory training in the military and remove what he calls "divisive" and "anti-American" ideas from military training.

Cotton introduced the "Combating Racist Training in the Military Act" on Thursday, according to Cotton's Senate website.

"Our military's strength depends on the unity of our troops and the knowledge that America is a noble nation worth fighting for," Cotton said. "Critical Race Theory teaches that race is a person's most important characteristic, and that America is an evil, oppressive place. That idea may be fashionable in left-wing circles and college classrooms, but it has no place in our military."

The legislation aims to exclude from military training claims like, for example, America is a racist or oppressive country or that one race is inherently superior or inferior to any other.

The bill is drafted to protect the right of individual service members to hold and express such views and have access to materials promoting them, according to Fox News, even as it would exclude critical race theory indoctrination from official training.

Cotton's bill comes after the U.S. Navy released a recommended reading list last month including many "anti-racist books" such as those written by Dr. Ibram X. Kendi and Robin DiAngelo, books that, according to Cotton, claim white people are inherently racist and that "race is the insidious subtext for virtually all human interactions."

With Democrats in control of both houses of Congress and the White House, Cotton's bill faces an uphill battle.