A Black Lives Matter activist was arrested for ripping an “All Lives Matter” button off a participant at the Moorhead stop of the Center for the American Experiment “Raise Our Standards” tour. The tour – taking place across Minnesota – aims to educate parents and others about Critical Race Theory and the danger that they say it poses to schools.
Catrin Wigfall, a presenter during the tour, said there are ways to teach the history of America without implementing critical race theory as a teaching tool. She explained, “The problem with Critical Race Theory is it puts a race-based lens on everything.”
According to local news, the woman who initiated the physical altercation was 35-year-old Vanessa Clark of Fargo, and she was cited for disorderly conduct. There were others accompanying Clark, but no one else has been charged to date. However, the City Attorney is reviewing the police report to determine if the behavior of any other protesters warrant charges.
The Duluth stop of the same tour also dealt with some opposition from the Duluth chapter of the NAACP. Classie Dudley posted a video on the Duluth NAACP Facebook page saying she was upset that the Center for the American Experiment tour was coming to Duluth. She said that The Center for the American Experiment are preaching that Critical Race Theory should not be taught in schools, but that they are clearly not arguing if politics should exist in schools, because if politics didn’t exist in schools, “we wouldn’t be saying the Pledge of Allegiance in schools” and that “we wouldn’t be teaching that George Washington never told a lie.”
Dudley went on to call the Raise Our Standards tour an “act of hate speech” and “overt racism.” She also called out the organization for hosting the event in Duluth on the week of Juneteenth, saying that the Black community “has enough going on.” She said, “The week of Juneteenth we have a racist organization coming down and preaching white supremacy.”
The Center for the American Experiment President John Hinderaker said in a statement, “The Left in Minnesota, led by Black Lives Matter and the NAACP are afraid of a free exchange of ideas so they are trying to shut us down instead. It won’t work. Hundreds of Minnesotans have participated in the Raise Our Standards tour, and we will not be deterred by these childish tactics. We thank the Moorhead police ofﬁcers for helping us restore order at the Moorhead event and Duluth will be rescheduled as soon as we ﬁnd a venue with the courage to host the event.”
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Hayley Tschetter is a reporter with The Minnesota Sun and The Star News Network. She graduated with a degree in Communications from the University of Northwestern-St. Paul. Send news tips to [email protected]