Chanting the names of Aztec gods is one activity included in a newly proposed ethnic studies curriculum for Californian students.
The proposition, named the Ethnic Studies Model Curriculum, is targeted at primary and secondary schools that educate over six million students across California. Within the lesson is a chant centered around “In Lak Ech” which translates to “love, unity, mutual respect,” along with “Panche Be” which is described as “seeking the roots of truth.” Both are in direct relation to Aztec gods. Under the guise of creating unity, the chant has school children declare “you are my other me,” and “if I do harm to you, I do harm to myself.” Continuing, the song leads children to chant Tezcatlipoca, the name of the Aztec god that was honored with human sacrifice and cannibalism.
Historically, Tezcatlipoca is worshipped for power to be a warrior for social justice and develop a revolutionary spirit. R. Tolteka Cuauhtin, the initial main developer of the curriculum, cites his book, Rethinking Ethnic Studies, and argues that America was founded on a “Eurocentric, white supremacist (racist, anti-Black, anti-Indigenous), capitalist (classist), patriarchal (sexist and misogynistic), heteropatriarchal (homophobic), and anthropocentric paradigm brought from Europe.” Toltketa claims that whites began “grabbing the land,” “hatching hierarchies,” and “developing for Europe/whiteness,” which created “excess wealth” that “became the basis for the capitalist economy.” This established a “hegemony” that continues to the present day, wherein minorities are subjected to “socialization, domestication, and ‘zombification.’”
According to CDE’s website, the school board will vote on the proposed curriculum this week. Reported by Discovery Institute researcher Chris Rufo, the curriculum was just one of many diversity programs to gain attention in recent months. Much of its language and content bears resemblance to other programs that have been associated with critical race theory — a controversial way of analyzing identity that has been the subject of intense debate. The curriculum aims to reverse Christianity’s alleged “theocide” against Native American gods by leading students in a chant to various indigenous deities, including the Aztec god of human sacrifice. The California curriculum’s introduction argued that the program would help marginalized groups [PJ Media].
The above chants were part of a list of instructional resources for educators to use in order to facilitate discussions about “race, racism, bigotry, and the experiences of diverse Americans.” The “chants, affirmations, and energizers,” the curriculum read, “can be used as energizers to bring the class together, build unity around ethnic studies principles and values, and to reinvigorate the class following a lesson that may be emotionally taxing or even when student engagement may appear to be low.”
While some have praised these types of programs as a way to enhance racial understanding, others have been more critical due to the fact that teaching basic Christian values is often not allowed in many public schools. Williamson Evers, an Independent Institute senior fellow and former assistant secretary at the U.S. Department of Education, told Fox News that California’s curriculum furthered a neo-racist ideology. “They’re denying that the principles of America’s founding — all men are created equal, they’re endowed by their creator with certain inalienable rights and so forth — that these principles can, through time, bring about human rights for all,” he said Wednesday [FOX].
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ARTICLE: ANTOINETTE AHO
POLITICS EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE
PHOTO CREDITS: THE NEW YORK TIMES