In a Thursday speech delivered at the National Archives Museum, President Donald Trump announced that he will soon be signing an executive order establishing a commission to promote “patriotic education” in American schools, The Hill reported.
During his address, Trump repeatedly asserted that “the left,” led by the Democratic Party, is waging a war against American values, traditions and culture.
“We are here today to declare that we will never submit to tyranny. We will reclaim our history, and our country, for citizens of every race, color, religion and creed,” the president said, after taking aim at “cancel culture” and mobs of protesters in the streets.
Trump said that his 1776 Commission will be tasked with encouraging educators to “teach our children about the miracle of American history.”
In his speech, the commander-in-chief rebuked the so-called critical race theory, a theoretical framework which argues that systemic racism is to blame for racial inequality. He described it as a “Marxist doctrine” and a “form of child abuse.”
The name of Trump’s commission seems to be a nod at The New York Times Magazine‘s 1619 Project, named for the date of the first arrival of enslaved Africans on U.S. soil, which was established with the goal of re-examining the consequences of slavery.
Trump accused Democrats and their allies of seeking to divide Americans, arguing that his administration has adopted Martin Luther King’s philosophy.
“We embrace the vision of Martin Luther King where children are not judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character. The left is attempting to destroy that beautiful vision and divide Americans by race in the service of political power.”
As The Hill noted, Trump has long dismissed the idea that there is institutional racism in the U.S.
In recent months, the president and his allies have tried to depict the Black Lives Matter movement and the ongoing protests against police brutality as a project of the far-left meant to delegitimize U.S. institutions and demean the nation’s history.
Trump delivered a similar speech on Fourth of July, when he denounced the protesters’ attempts to tear down statues of figures associated with the Confederacy. In his remarks, he accused schools across the country of trying to “indoctrinate” their students.
According to the publication, this seems to be part of the Trump campaign’s broader strategy of galvanizing white voters ahead of the November presidential election.
Trump has accused his general election opponent, Democrat Joe Biden, of embracing the “radical left” and supporting policies championed by progressives such as Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders.