Douglas Andrews / July 6, 2021

Mike Pompeo Unloads on CRT

The former CIA director and secretary of state warns against the divisive nature of Critical Race Theory.

It’s safe to say that few Americans love this country more than Mike Pompeo. The kid from Fountain Valley, California, graduated first in his class at West Point and served as an armor officer in the U.S. Army before co-founding and building an aerospace company in Kansas. But rather than remain in the private sector, he returned to public service — first as a congressman, and then as CIA director and secretary of state under President Donald Trump.

In a July 4 interview with radio host John Catsimatidis (the Pompeo portion begins at the 16:00 mark), he reflected on “this asset we’ve been given because we are just privileged to be Americans … and how we should never take it for granted.”

His host then asked him about the future and what he’s worried about, and Pompeo didn’t hesitate.

This is a pretty resilient nation, [but] I’m worried about some of the things being taught in our schools. If we teach that [the] founding of the United States of America was somehow flawed, it was corrupt, it was racist, that’s really dangerous. It strikes at the very moorings, the very foundations of our country. And so I certainly worry about that. It’s called Critical Race Theory sometimes or the 1619 Project, but at the end they’re attacking the central understandings that we have shared together for 245 years in an attempt to divide the country. If that continues, if that is allowed to flourish and prosper, then we could in fact lose this thing that is so special. We can’t let that happen.

Unfortunately, Secretary Pompeo was preaching to the choir. If only he’d had an audience in the faculty lounge at the University of North Carolina, which disgraced itself last week by offering a tenured professorship — the position of Knight Chair in Race and Investigative Journalism — to New York Times journalist hack Nikole Hannah-Jones. Jones is the author of the roundly and widely discredited 1619 Project, which stresses that America was founded not with its Declaration of Independence in 1776 but with the landing of the first slave ship on its shores in 1619. (Who knew, for example, that we fought the Revolutionary War to preserve slavery, and that blacks were mostly on their own in the fight to abolish that vile institution?)

This morning, however, Hannah-Jones added eternal insult to UNC’s self-inflicted injury when she declined the school’s offer and instead decided to take a professorship at Washington DC’s historically black Howard University.

As for Pompeo, he’s worried about our education system at all levels, including our leftist institutions of higher ed:

They have lost what I was just talking about — this understanding of America and its traditions. [But] we can also make choices about where our kids go to school, and make sure that our kids are receiving an education that is broad. I’m happy if students take courses in philosophy and they learn about the history of socialism and the history of communism. I think when they learn that, they’ll see that those have failed every time they’ve been tried all around the world.“

As for CRT, Pompeo considers himself an optimist. "I’ve been out around the country these last days talking to people, and I don’t think anybody’s about to let that happen,” he says. “[But] I do worry that if we become fractured, or we lose faith in our constitutional principles, that somewhere, somehow, or some adversary like the Chinese Communist Party will come undermine what’s made our country so special.”

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