The Attack on “Critical Race Theory”: What’s Going on? from EmbraceRace

Embrace Race is an invaluable resource for parents, teachers and caregivers who are eager to support children’s healthy racial identities and racial sensiblilities. Check out this description from Embrace Race about the attacks on critical race theory and the upcoming webinar to understand the significance.

Lately, a lot of people have been very upset about “critical race theory.” Back in September 2020, the former president directed federal agencies to cut funding for training programs that refer to “white privilege” or “critical race theory, declaring such programs “un-American propaganda” and “a sickness that cannot be allowed to continue.” In the last few months, at least eight states have passed legislation banning the teaching of CRT in schools and some 20 more have similar bills in the pipeline or plans to introduce them. What’s going on?

Join us for a conversation that situates the current battle about “critical race theory” in the context of a much longer war over the relationship between our racial present and racial past, and the role of culture, institutions, laws, policies and “systems” in shaping both. As members of families and communities, as adults in the lives of the children who will have to live with the consequences of these struggles, how do we understand what’s at stake and how we can usefully weigh in? Please bring your comments, questions, and experiences!

The Attack on “Critical Race Theory”: What’s Going on?

Juneteenth Resources for Families With Young Children

“On June 19, 1865, enslaved African Americans in Galveston, Texas, were told they were free, and 156 years later many communities continue to celebrate.

Juneteenth is about acknowledging the oppression of slavery and it is also about celebrating freedom. Many African American families today mark the day with food, music, community organizing, and being together. To understand the importance of Juneteenth you need a fundamental understanding of slavery, oppression, and systemic racism that continues.”- Red Leaf Press

Read Aloud Books For Young Children

All the Colors We Are | Todos los Colores de Nuestra Piel by Katie Kissinger

We Came to America Book by Faith Ringgold 

 The Colors Of Us By: Karen Katz

For Parents

Embrace Race: Let’s Raise a Generation of Children Who Are Thoughtful, Informed, and Brave About Race.

Teaching Juneteenth The history of Juneteenth acknowledges hard history while also empowering students to be advocates for change. by Coshandra Dillard 

Zinn Education Project June 19, 1865: “Juneteenth” Emancipation Day

Dehumanizing Language Is a Tool of White Supremacy

by Brene Brown

The dehumanization of women.
The dehumanization of Asians.
The dehumanization of sex workers.
The dehumanization around class.
The dehumanization of immigrants.

Dehumanizing language is a radicalizing tool of white supremacy and white evangelical extremism (which are inextricably connected).

Combine a long history of discrimination and bias with leaders who talk about the “Kung Flu” and “grabbing them by the pussy” and you can see the very short distance between our language, our thoughts, and our actions including everything from violence and diminishing that violence with “just having a bad day” to “Well, look what kind of work they did.” 

This is why shame, humiliation, and dehumanizing make the world a more dangerous place for all of us.

We shouldn’t tolerate anyone being shamed, humiliated or dehumanized – even the people who bring out our rage. It’s easier than accountability, it’s a quick way to discharge our anger, and it can even get some “likes” and fist bumps. But, there is no question that dehumanizing makes the world a more dangerous and vicious place for all of us.

“Eyes that Kiss in the Corners”–Affirming Asian Identity

At HFP, we stand with the Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPI) community, both in Portland and around the country. We share the grief and outrage at the racist and misogynistic murders in Atlanta, Georgia, and the recent and ongoing violence against Asian people in the United States. Violence, harassment, and xenophobia have no place in our communities. Let us speak and act against hate and teach our young ones to do the same.  (Adapted from Literary Arts’ statement of support).

Here’s one of my favorite Asian-affirming picture books to share with young ones. Mai’s read aloud version includes prompts and pauses that invite children to reflect on their own ideas and experiences. Mai includes a craft idea that relates to the book!

Portland Association of Teachers’ Statement on Anti-Asian Violence 

Check out these websites for resources and ways to support the AAPI community. 

Stop AAPI Hate 

Asian Pacific American Network of Oregon (APANO) 

Asian Americans Advancing Justice (AAJC)

Celebrate Black History Month with Picture Books That Come to Life!


Netflix Jr. has a powerful, entertaining read aloud series called Bookmarks- Celebrating Black Voices. Available for free on YouTube. Check out Celebrating Black History Month to view actors reading some of the best children’s picture books available!  And tell a friend. This series is not to be missed.