On Monday, the Houston Chronicle reported that a school in Katy, Texas was forced to cancel a speaking engagement with an award-winning Black children's book author after a small group of parents raised the specter he would poison students' minds with "critical race theory."
"Jerry Craft, author of Year 6 graphic novels, was set to speak virtually at a Katy ISD event on Monday morning," reported Claire Goodman. "His engagement was quietly canceled and his books removed from district libraries after 400 Katy ISD parents demanded that the event be canceled and his books be banned, claiming that Craft's work promotes critical race theory."
The report went on to say that parents called for Craft's graphic novels to be banned even though they "have been winners of the Newbery Medal, the Coretta Scott King Author Award and Kirkus Prize for Young Readers' Literature."
And even though the books are based on real-life experiences of Craft's own children, the parents in the school district alleged that his books are anti-white.
According to the report, the petition accusing Craft's books of being racist against white children was originated by Bonnie Anderson, a former candidate for the Katy ISD Board of Trustees who also sued the district for having a mask mandate.
"Critical race theory" is a framework that explores the role of systemic racism in shaping U.S. institutions and society. This theory is not actually taught in most public schools, but right-wing activists have frequently attacked "critical race theory" as a stand-in for any books that talk about racism or, indeed, Black educators themselves.