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Date: 10-31-2021

Case Style:

Black Emergency Response Team, et al. v. John O'Connor, et al .

Case Number: 5:21-cv-01022-G

Judge: Charles Goodwin

Court: United States District Court for the Western District of Oklahoma (Oklahoma County)

Plaintiff's Attorney: Megan E. Lambert

Defendant's Attorney: Attorney's General's Office

Description: Oklahoma City, OK: Civil rights lawyer represented Plaintiffs, who sued Defendants on an education law theory claiming that Oklahoma's so-called critical race theory ban should be declared unconstitutional because it violated the First Amendment.

The Plaintiffs claim that "[House Bill 1775} has had an extreme and detrimental impacts in the classroom, across the state, across levels of education already."

"And a lot of folks were extremely concerned not only about their own classrooms, but the future of civil discourse in Oklahoma if these prohibitions were to stand."

Plaintiffs also claimed that the so-called critical race theory ban prevents students from receiving an inclusive and accurate education.

The authors of HB1175 have apparently admitted that the new law is supposed to ban critical race theory and ensure no students feel uncomfortable based on their race.

"Is “critical race theory” a way of understanding how American racism has shaped public policy, or a divisive discourse that pits people of color against white people? Liberals and conservatives are in sharp disagreement.

The topic has exploded in the public arena this spring—especially in K-12, where numerous state legislatures are debating bills seeking to ban its use in the classroom.

In truth, the divides are not nearly as neat as they may seem. The events of the last decade have increased public awareness about things like housing segregation, the impacts of criminal justice policy in the 1990s, and the legacy of enslavement on Black Americans. But there is much less consensus on what the government’s role should be in righting these past wrongs. Add children and schooling into the mix and the debate becomes especially volatile." Education Week

Outcome: Pending

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