Sen. Tom Cotton has thrown in ever more viciously with the Republican flavor of the day — invoking “critical race theory” as an anxiety-inducing euphemism for acknowledging racism past and present in the United States White privilege does not allow this.

He’s called for getting rid of an Air Force Academy professor for teaching about critical race theory in her political science course and, along with other right-wingers in Congress, he has said her op-ed on the subject makes Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin a liar for saying the theory isn’t taught in the military.

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Austin isn’t having it, Politico reports.

“There is no contradiction here. The Secretary’s comments stand,” Pentagon spokesperson John Kirby told POLITICO Thursday. “That a professor at an academic institution such as the Air Force Academy teaches a given theory as part of an elective course does not in the slightest way signify some larger effort by the Department to teach, espouse or embrace said theory.

By the lights of Cotton and his fellow travelers — acolyte Trent Garner in Arkansas notably — it is “divisive” to speak of examples of racism, misogyny and colonialism in America’s past or of flaws in the origins of the country and to suggest they have had lingering after-effects. To NOT speak of these things is education malpractice. A more perfect union is formed from learning about mistakes and, when as needed, correcting them.

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Not, however, if you prefer white male privilege.

Note, again, Cotton’s particular scorn for a woman, in this case, Lynne Chandler Garcia.

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Cotton has also been spreading misinformation in the last 24 hours about a child’s book that talks about racial issues. Again, the author, Anasthasia Higginbotham, is a woman. And he’s also been knocking a woman author, Robin DiAngelo, who’s paid to make speeches about racial topics she’s written about. Honorariums are intended only for white male privilege hucksters in Cotton World.