CRT Seminar Review

CHAMBERSBURG – Over three hundred people attended a seminar on Critical Race Theory (CRT) in Antrim Township, Franklin County last night (18 July 2021). The free seminar held at the Family Life Center of Antrim Brother in Christ Church, featured guest speaker, Matthew Odegaard, pastor and podcaster who has devoted considerable time to researching the subject, presented the subject from a Christian perspective.

Odegaard first explained why there is so much confusion on this topic as it is difficult to define and stems from more than one philosophy.  He described how there are many words used in CRT that can have more than one meaning and that language itself is being used to cause confusion. He said even calling it a theory is misleading as it is actually a movement and a call to specific action.

He showed a complicated graph demonstrating the intersection of the many influences on CRT, including marxism, law-based critical theory, and radical feminism among many others and said that teachers are being trained in this way of thinking and this way of communicating knowledge to students.

Ultimately he said it is a movement that claims a racism free “utopia” is promised if the imbalance of power can be eliminated by eliminating the systems of racism and white dominance. He pointed out however a lack of any practical application of how this can be achieved, that critical race theorists never seem to explain.

Odegaard also warned of increasing racial divisions, and that CRT is a “stand point” theory that blames “whiteness” or “white culture” for the ills of the world. But it also holds that non-whites are engaging in “whiteness” when they disagree with CRT so that there can never be any true debate, or blame for any other cause of these ills.

 He says this is antithetical to the christian viewpoint and recommended christians realize this and do three things, preach the gospel, be faithful to God and love others.

Odegaard did point out however that it is not only christians who have grave concerns about CRT and recommended as one of the best sources in learning more about CRT and the harm it causes, a book by two atheist academics, James Lindsay and Helen Pluckrose as well as Lindsay’s website New Discourses.

Odegaard encouraged the audience to learn as much as they could, get involved with school boards and stay vigilant on what is being taught in schools and how teachers are being trained. He advised that children’s beliefs and values are best given at home and from families, and parents must not allow schools to take this role from them.