Mike Johnson must advocate for a truly color-blind culture

Congratulations, Speaker Johnson. 

You were elected by your caucus to push through legislation that would benefit the American people and lift the American spirit. 

And you should make one of your immediate priorities the passage of a long overdue update to the Civil Rights Act of 1964 that enshrines colorblindness as a core American value.

The problem here is simple: Race relations in the US have taken a turn for the worse.

Back in 2013, 70% of Americans viewed race relations positively; today, that figure has dropped to a worrisome 42%.  

What happened?  Have Americans truly gotten more racist

Not really.

The real cause of this shift in sentiment is the well-developed, educrat-enforced narrative known as critical race theory (CRT) which insists that America is an inherently racist society.

New House Speaker Mike Johnson’s family.
Mike Johnson

Indeed, DEI, CRT and woke ideologies implant not merely awareness — but resentful awareness — against America and Americans.

Point of fact: our federal government has been the leader in propagating these divisive narratives through its own hiring practices and messaging.

At a time when we are living with serious challenges ranging from MS-13 gang-members to Hamas in Gaza, Joe Biden called “white supremacy” the biggest terrorist threat to our nation during a graduation speech at Howard University this past spring.

Meanwhile, Kamala Harris explicitly argued for racial preferences through “equity” in every aspect of American life. 

Harvard University became both a flashpoint and litmus test for the debate around racial preferences amid the recent Supreme Court decision to end Affirmative Action.

Liberals would say that minority Americans have become “more aware” of systematic racism and its structures; in other words, “woke.” 

But awareness doesn’t necessarily result in a spate of anger and division. 

All signs instead point to a well-funded — and coordinated — effort to promote such division through social-justice groups such as Black Lives Matter, whose 2020 protests resulted in $1-2 billion in property damage claims.

Helping #BLM along is the multi-billion DEI industry, which enriched itself from white guilt while producing little in the way of unity or even results.

Congress has the power to at least put a damper to this madness via a much-needed update to one of the most important civil rights laws of our time. 

The Civil Rights Act of 1964 explicitly prevents the state from discriminating based on race. 

Read at face value, it appears to uphold a critical American principle – equal treatment for all, regardless of skin color. 

It is supposed to create a more unified society with greater trust and social cohesion.

Both President Biden and Vice President Harris have embraced racial preferences as a tool for ending what they believe is America’s history of systemic racism.
Michael Brochstein/SOPA Images/Shutterstock

However, over the past 50 years, progressives have twisted the Act’s language to divisive and harmful ends.

They’ve helped expand the number and scale of discrimination lawsuits, arguing that the mere existence of disparate outcomes means that discrimination must exist.

This has created a bitter, litigious legal environment where everyone is able to accuse each other of racism simply for, say,  not hiring enough minorities.

Companies scramble to look non-racist by rushing to hire minorities — regardless of qualifications — for fear of lawsuits, harming meritocracy and stoking employee resentment.  

The purpose of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 should be to establish a more colorblind society where people are judged by the content of their character, not the color of their skin.

The Left has severely drifted from that purpose.

They have opted to label color blindness as an evil, while guilt-tripping white Americans into viewing minorities as helpless victims.

And this ultimately benefits no one. 

An archival image of Michael Tirrell James (center), the adopted African-American son of new House Speaker Mike Johnson.
Mike Johnson

Worse yet, the Left regularly pushes non-discrimination to the opposite extreme – ignoring colorblindness for the sake of blatant reverse racism.

For years, I fought against discrimination against Asian Americans at Harvard University – discrimination that occurred, in part, because Harvard wanted to admit members of other minority groups despite their lower grades and standardized testing scores. 

We took our case all the way to the Supreme Court where we prevailed early this year and ended race-based admissions at America’s elite higher learning institutions. 

But our work is far from done, and we still need stronger enforcement mechanisms from Congress to hold universities accountable to the Court’s decision. 

Asian-Americans protest in front of the Supreme Court to advocate against race-based university admissions policies that they believed penalized Asian students while benefitting blacks and Hispanics.
Getty Images

An update to the Civil Rights Act of 1964 would do just that by explicitly stating that it cannot guarantee equal outcomes. 

It would need to say that discrimination of all forms is wrong, even if the race being discriminated against is white or Asian.

It would drop all racial quotas and preferences from government hiring and contracting, as these quotas only serve to feed the victimhood industry.

Such an act would not ignore the reality of race.

Speaker Johnson, you are the de facto adoptive father of an African-American child. 

You said that “it’s a reality” that your African-American child faces greater obstacles than your other children. 

This may be true. 

But you also rejected the idea that “institutional racism” is the sole cause here, citing his family upbringing, and you explicitly said that “socialism is a dead end” towards solving this and other social ills.

This past June, the Supreme Court overturned existing policies that allowed race to be used as a factor in determining admission to elite schools.

Speaker Johnson, a National Colorblindness Amendment would reject racial socialism while encouraging Americans to look at your son and every human far beyond just his skin color. 

At the same time, your Congress can tackle many of the core issues holding minorities back, namely the decline of the traditional family structure and failure of our education system. 

Make no mistake, Mr. Speaker: America needs healing — and a National Colorblindness Amendment can help that healing begin. 

Kenny Xu is the author of “School of Woke” and a candidate for US Congress in North Carolina’s 13th District.