NBC Dishonestly Hypes Lawsuit Against DeSantis for Banning CRT

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Wednesday’s NBC Nightly News dedicated an entire segment to a pending lawsuit by racial ambulance chaser Ben Crump and a number of left-wing activist students over Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and the Florida Board of Education banning an AP African American studies course that would’ve taught public school students content steeped leftist ideology like Critical Race Theory, black queer studies, intersectionality, and other topics that violate state laws. Most of the segment was framed against the educational reforms DeSantis was making, with correspondent Zinhle Essamuah framing the racial indoctrination as simply “African American history.”

“Protest and pushback in Florida with a new potential legal battle over race education,” Essamuah announced before cutting to a student named Elijah Edward who whined about DeSantis: “I can’t believe that this is 2023, and America is talking about censuring education.”

“Civil rights attorney Ben Crump announcing his plan to sue Republican Governor Ron DeSantis and the state after DeSantis blocked a pilot AP African American studies course in Florida,” Essamuah sympathetically reported. 

Instead of reporting it as fact, Essamuah proclaimed that “DeSantis says the state already teaches African American history and is opposed to specific lessons in the curriculum.”

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The takeaway that the average NBC viewer would have was that this was just a partisan claim from DeSantis. Which turns both sides into a “he said, she said” situation.

Essamuah then spoke to a parent and three students who all complained that DeSantis was doing away with the course:  

ESSAMUAH: What message do you feel this ban may have communicated to your student? 

CHAD HECKMAN (PARENT): I think it communicates very clearly that African American history is not as important as other history. 

ESSAMUAH: Developed by the college board, the pilot course is currently in 60 schools nationwide. The organization says it does not require students to adopt a particular ideology and after a feedback period, it will make appropriate revisions to the preliminary pilot course framework. 

These Florida high schoolers say this is personal. 

What’s your reaction to this AP African American studies ban? 

FLORIDA STUDENT: It’s keeping African Americans silenced. 

EDWARD: In my opinion, it was targeted and I couldn’t learn about my own history. 

STUDENT: I think it just symbolizes like blatant racism. 

“Last year, controversially signing into law restrictive legislation on race and gender,” Essamuah said, referring to DeSantis. 

Finally getting to the statement from the Florida Department of Education, Essamuah reported that the department, “said it was a publicity stunt and that they expect the removal of content on Critical Race Theory, black queer studies, intersectionality, and other topics that violate our laws,” before adding how “they will review the College Board’s revised curriculum next month.” 

This biased segment from NBC Nightly News was made possible by Liberty Mutual. Their information is linked.

To read the transcript, click “expand”: 

NBC Nightly News
1/25/2023
6:46:25 p.m. Eastern

LESTER HOLT: Back now with a battle in Florida schools. Students planning a lawsuit after Governor Ron DeSantis rejected an AP African American studies pilot program in the state. The governor saying the class pushes a political agenda. We get more now from Zinhle Essamuah.  

BEN CRUMP: Black history, is American history. 

ZINHLE ESSAMUAH: Protest and pushback in Florida with a new potential legal battle over race education. 

ELIJAH EDWARD (FLORIDA STUDENT): I can’t believe that this is 2023, and America is talking about censuring education. 

ESSAMUAH: Civil rights attorney Ben Crump announcing his plan to sue Republican Governor Ron DeSantis and the state after DeSantis blocked a pilot AP African American studies course in Florida. 

CRUMP: No to censorship. Yes to community. 

ESSAMUAH: DeSantis says the state already teaches African American history and is opposed to specific lessons in the curriculum. 

GOVERNOR RON DESANTIS: We believe in teaching kids facts and how to think but we don’t believe they should have an agenda imposed on them. When you try to use black history to shoehorn in queer theory you are clearly trying to use that for political purposes. 

ESSAMUAH: What message do you feel this ban may have communicated to your student? 

CHAD HECKMAN (PARENT): I think it communicates very clearly that African American history is not as important as other history. 

ESSAMUAH: Developed by the college board, the pilot course is currently in 60 schools nationwide. The organization says it does not require students to adopt a particular ideology and after a feedback period, it will make appropriate revisions to the preliminary pilot course framework. 

These Florida high schoolers say this is personal. 

What’s your reaction to this AP African American studies ban? 

FLORIDA STUDENT: It’s keeping African Americans silenced. 

EDWARD: In my opinion, it was targeted and I couldn’t learn about my own history. 

STUDENT: I think it just symbolizes like blatant racism. 

ESSAMUAH: DeSantis has made education policy a key focus of his administration. Last year controversially signing into law restrictive legislation on race and gender. In response to Crump’s intent to sue, the Florida Department of Education said it was a publicity stunt and that they expect the removal of content on critical race theory, black queer studies, intersectionality, and other topics that violate our laws. Florida’s Department of Education tells us they will review the college board’s revised curriculum next month. Attorney Ben Crump says he will only file a lawsuit if DeSantis does not change his stance.

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