Nation: President Trump Bans Racial Sensitivity Training for Federal Agencies

3 min read President Trump recently issued an executive ban to prohibit racial sensitive training in federal government agencies.

President Trump and Vice President Pence in front of flag

Photo Credit: (History in HD) President Donald Trump and VP Mike Pence.

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By Wesley Wallace | wwallace5@radford.edu

President Donald Trump recently ordered federal agencies to stop racial sensitivity training. A two-page memo issued by Russell Vought, Director of the Office of Management and Budget, directly addresses federal government departments.

President Trump wrote, “Americans should be taught to take pride in our Great Country, and if you don’t, there’s nothing in it for you!”

In the memo, Vought states, “All agencies are directed to begin to identify all contracts or other agency spending related to any training on ‘critical race theory,’ ‘white privilege,’ or any other training or propaganda effort that teaches or suggests either (1) that the United States is an inherently racist or evil country or (2) that any race or ethnicity is inherently racist or evil.”

“These types of ‘trainings’ not only run counter to the fundamental beliefs for which our Nation has stood since its inception, but they also engender division and resentment within the Federal workforce,” Vought went on to comment, according to Fox News.

Additionally, President Trump expanded the ban on racial sensitivity training toward colleges that receive federal grants and employees that work as government contractors.

In a Sept. 22 twitter post, Trump explained his reasoning behind the ban by saying, “A few weeks ago, I banned efforts to indoctrinate government employees with divisive and harmful sex and race-based ideologies. Today, I’ve expanded that ban to people and companies that do business with our Country, the United States Military, Government Contractors, and Grantees.”

President Trump wrote, “Americans should be taught to take pride in our Great Country, and if you don’t, there’s nothing in it for you!”

During an email interview with The Tartan, Buffy Ruffin, Interim Director for Radford University’s Center for Diversity & Inclusion (CDI), provided her professional opinion regarding Trump’s ban.

President Trump
Photo Credit: (Library of Congress) [Portrait of President-elect Donald Trump]. Digital photograph, 2016. Library of Congress Prints & Photographs Division. https://www.loc.gov/item/2017645723/
“It is unfortunate that our commander in chief either does not understand or completely understands and does not care about the injustices that mark our history and persist today.”

“The act of banning anti-racial sensitivity training is who he is at his core. The question is, is this who we are as a nation,” Ruffin said. “As a nation, will we educate ourselves, will we commit to speaking up and educating others? Agencies are groups of people. If people commit to the aforementioned things, agencies will change regardless of the ban.”

The expansion of the ban in the president’s recent executive order does not state whether colleges that receive federal grant funding will be required to remove on-campus programs that violate the legislative decree’s provisions.

NADOHE wrote, “At this time of racial reckoning with our past, the president deepens the divide and eliminates any possibility that individuals within the federal government can learn the consequences of racism and its deadly effects.”

The National Association of Diversity Officers in Higher Education (NADOHE) publicly released a statement refuting Trump’s claims.

NADOHE wrote, “At this time of racial reckoning with our past, the president deepens the divide and eliminates any possibility that individuals within the federal government can learn the consequences of racism and its deadly effects.”

“Worse yet, it is a signal to our citizens and the world that racism does not exist and never existed. Eliminating these critical conversations on race is an erasure of history at a time when we need this understanding more than ever to transform our society into a just one,” NADOHE wrote.