A Pro-Human K-12 Curriculum

And Other News

September 8th, 2021


FAIR Launches K-12 ‘FAIRstory Curriculum’

FAIR is proud to announce the launch of our K-12 “FAIRstory Curriculum.” Our curriculum exposes students to the histories, experiences, struggles, accomplishments, and contributions of Americans of diverse backgrounds. Ours is a fact-based approach to teaching students about racism; it’s honest about the failures and shortcomings of our American past and present while recognizing how the struggles and accomplishments of Americans continue to move us closer to our ideals. Students learn to counter racism and intolerance with humanity and compassion.

The FAIRstory Curriculum can support either the creation of new stand-alone ethnic studies courses or provide supplemental material to orient an existing history or civics course towards ethnic studies. Extension activities and culminating projects are also available for many lesson plans, allowing for deeper and more focused learning.

FAIR developed its curriculum to empower students to confront racism and bigotry, which depend on a dehumanizing emphasis on racial difference. In contrast to curricula that view America through a triumphal or cynical lens, FAIRstory presents an honest account of the past and present, teaching students to think for themselves by engaging deeply with original sources, multiple perspectives, and opposing viewpoints on important events.


Learn more about the FAIRstory Curriculum here.

* * *

Please join our Educator Curriculum Webinars on September 16th, 23rd, and 30th from 7:00pm-8:00pm EDT, where we will be introducing the FAIRstory curriculum principles, standards, lesson plans, and resources. Separate Parent Curriculum Webinars will be taking place on September 17th and 24th, and October 1st from 7:00pm-8:00pm EDT.

Register for an Educator Curriculum Webinar here.

Register for a Parent Curriculum Webinar here.

‘Distance to 100’ for Everyone

For the blog Eduwonk, Ian V. Rowe questioned our education system’s single-minded focus on closing performance gaps between ethnic groups. Since racism is frequently invoked as the sole cause for such disparities, other approaches are largely ignored even though decades of effort aimed at lessening these gaps have failed. Rowe writes:

In my view, the multi-decade obsession with closing achievement gaps by certain categories has done something even worse: ushered in a mono-causal type of thinking that crowds out the ability to identify solutions across categories. If one believes systemic racism is the sole or primary cause of racial disparities, then a tendency of that conclusion is to identify a narrow universe of solutions focused on race as well. But that incomplete set of solutions has clearly not worked.

Rowe proposes an alternative approach that he calls “Distance to 100” which is not primarily concerned with closing gaps between students with different skin colors, but rather focuses on “the gap between 100% proficiency for all students and [their] current performance levels.” Rowe believes that such an approach would reveal the common causes that prevent students of all skin colors from achieving basic benchmarks of academic performance.

Read the full article here.

Depoliticizing The Classroom

Next week, on September 14th, the book Undoctrinate: How Politicized Classrooms Harm Kids and Ruin Our Schools―and What We Can Do About It will be released.

This book is for anyone concerned about indoctrination in American schools. The book covers the philosophical, ethical, pedagogical, democratic, developmental and other reasons why classroom bias shortchanges students while outlining effective ways to counter this growing problem. The book is written by Bonnie Kerrigan Snyder, the Director of High School Outreach at the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education—a nonpartisan, nonprofit that defends constitutional freedoms in academia. 

You can view a free podcast with the author discussing the book here, and pre-order the book here.



Other News


For The Atlantic, Anne Applebaum has written an in-depth article about who she calls the “new Puritans”—online activists who use social media sites such as Twitter to ruin people's lives. These people haven’t broken any laws, but have merely voiced heterodox views or violated new ill-defined social codes on various sensitive topics. Applebaum states: 

Right here in America, right now, it is possible to meet people who have lost everything—jobs, money, friends, colleagues—after violating no laws, and sometimes no workplace rules either. Instead, they have broken (or are accused of having broken) social codes having to do with race, sex, personal behavior, or even acceptable humor, which may not have existed five years ago or maybe five months ago.

According to Applebaum, this mob culture, once confined to campuses and social media, has been exported to the real world where groups of activists can mobilize within minutes to shame their target. Once publicly shamed, victims of these mobbings bear the equivalent of a “scarlett letter,” and are often treated as social pariahs by their colleagues thereafter. She writes:

Heeding public demands for rapid retribution, they sometimes impose the equivalent of lifetime scarlet letters on people who have not been accused of anything remotely resembling a crime. Instead of courts, they use secretive bureaucracies. Instead of hearing evidence and witnesses, they make judgments behind closed doors.

Applebaum warns that while the U.S. Constitution ensures that “no person shall be … deprived of life, liberty or property without due process of law,” social media has created an unofficial parallel justice system where people can be deprived of such protections in the kangaroo court of public opinion.

Read the full article here.


For the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE), Greg Lukianoff, alongside the former ACLU president Nadine Strossen, provide clear answers to common questions and misconceptions about the value of free speech. Specifically, they refute the claim that “words are violence,” while carefully emphasizing that this does not imply words cannot be harmful. In fact, they stress, free speech is important and must be fervently protected precisely because of the immense power that words combined with reason have in causing harm to injustice and oppression. Lukianoff writes:

The idea that we should campaign against hurtful speech among adults arises from a failure to understand that free speech is our chosen method of resolving disagreements, using words rather than weapons. Open debate is our enlightened means of determining nothing less than how we order our society, what is true and what is false, what wars we should fight, what policies we should pass, whom we should put behind bars for the rest of their lives, and who gets to control our government. This is a deadly serious business.

Read the full article here.


On Substack, Luke Burgis published his interview with Chloé Valdary on her company and pro-human program called “Theory of Enchantment,” which she has described as “anti-racist training that isnt racist.” Valdary explains that while many so-called “anti-racist” programs are simplistic and divisive, with some even teaching that “timeliness” and “objectivity” are manifestations of white supremacy, her Theory of Enchantment program takes a more nuanced approach that focuses on our common humanity and addresses individual insecurities. According to Valdary: 

Theory of Enchantment is really trying to get people to exit the demonization/deification mindset and grapple with complexity, the complexity of their own lives, the complexity of their relationships with others, and the complexity of the societies in which they live. It is very much anti-Manichean and very much relational.

Valdary believes that racism and “supremacist ways of thinking” are the products of overcompensating for deep seated insecurities. To address this core issue of insecurity, her program takes a holistic approach utilizing music, literature, philosophy, and art to promote a complex understanding of other individuals, society, and oneself. Valdary states:

[O]ur theory of change is that once you’re able to perceive your own complexity, you will be able to perceive the complexity of others and will be less likely to stereotype or caricature or reduce others to one single thing.


Read the full article here.


For Counterweight, David Bernstein discusses his first encounter with “critical race theory”-inspired diversity trainings in 1999, where he was instructed to watch a video of a scripted conversation between three “non-white” individuals well-versed in the language of multiculturalism, and an ignorant “white” man. Bernstein recalls his revulsion at what he described as a “display of performative cruelty masquerading as enlightened diversity” as the “white” man was routinely chastised.

After the film, Bernstein and others were instructed to form groups to discuss how the film made them feel. When it was Bernstein’s turn to speak, he was honest and shared his misgivings. He then found himself on the receiving end of harassment similar to the man from the film, even though Bernstein, the son of an Iraqi Jew, had never before considered himself “white.” Bernstein recalls:

It hit me that this diversity training was actually a group therapy session for the mental illness known as white racism, and I was a patient. The therapist—one Howard Ross—was there to get us to recognize our own racism, the first step in overcoming any psychological ailment. My non-doctrinaire view on race was a cognitive distortion that could only be remedied through an intense course of diversity therapy.

Although Bernstein has been required to participate in similar coercive diversity training sessions since, he notes that more people are starting to feel comfortable speaking out against them, and encourages others to join in voicing their opposition.

Read the full article here.


In their weekly Briefing, The Economist explains how certain illiberal ideologies that had once been isolated within university humanities departments have managed to spread into our daily lives due to complacency and the unfounded assumption that “whatever happens on campus, stays on campus.”

According to the Briefing, three things assisted this ideology in making the jump from campus to culture: “a disaffected student body, an academic theory that was malleable enough to be shaped into a handbook for political activism, and a pliant university administration.”

These ideologies then gained wider influence and popularity in bestselling books that offered simple-sounding solutions to complex long-standing issues. This, combined with the “weaponization of social media,” has allowed these intolerant ideologies to spread to corporations, newsrooms, institutions, and even K-12 school curricula.


Read a free archived version of the article here.



On Bari Weiss’ Substack, Common Sense, FAIR Advisor Peter Boghossian announced that he is leaving his assistant professor position at Portland State University due to the retaliation he faced for questioning the tenets of “critical theory” and the dominant narratives surrounding diversity, equity, and inclusion. Boghossian writes:

I decided to study the new values that were engulfing Portland State and so many other educational institutions—values that sound wonderful, like diversity, equity, and inclusion, but might actually be just the opposite. The more I read the primary source material produced by critical theorists, the more I suspected that their conclusions reflected the postulates of an ideology, not insights based on evidence.

From his studies, Boghossian became convinced that fields based on critical theory were “corrupted bodies of scholarship” that published “morally fashionable” but deeply flawed research. To test this hypothesis, he teamed up with Medieval scholar Helen Pluckrose and mathematician James Lindsay to write and submit 20 bogus papers to several peer-reviewed critical theory journals specializing in race, gender, queer, sexuality, and fat studies to see whether they would pass peer-review and be accepted for publication.

The “Grievance Studies Affair,” as the operation came to be known as, was made public prematurely, but by then seven papers had already either been published or accepted for publication. Boghossian et al. argued that this demonstrated unacceptably low standards for scholarship in these supposedly academic disciplines. 

Shortly thereafter, swastikas bearing Boghossian's name and bags of feces started appearing in his department and outside his office door. Portland State then filed formal charges against Boghossian for “research misconduct,” alleging that his participation in the Grievance Studies Affair qualified as an experiment on human subjects that he did not seek university approval to perform. Boghossian relates:

For me, the years that followed were marked by continued harassment. I’d find flyers around campus of me with a Pinocchio nose. I was spit on and threatened by passersby while walking to class. I was informed by students that my colleagues were telling them to avoid my classes. And, of course, I was subjected to more investigation.

Portland State, says Boghossian, has betrayed its fundamental duty to its students and the public to not merely protect the freedom to question, but to actively foster it. For this reason, he has submitted his formal resignation. 


Read Boghossian’s full resignation letter here




For the New York Times, FAIR Advisor John McWhorter wrote an intriguing book review of Harvard law professor Randall Kennedy’s latest collection of essays, “SAY IT LOUD!” In his review, Mcwhorter illustrates that the reason Kennedy is not considered a “heterodox Black thinker” is because he says as much that “fits the mold of Black thought traditionally treated as ‘authentic’ as does not.” According to McWhorter:

Kennedy, as a legal scholar and law professor to the nth degree, is uncompromisingly disinclined to partisanship over reflection. His discipline in this regard is rather awesome. He switches among various names for the Black race rather than hewing to ‘African American,’ out of a refusal to give in to passing fashion.

While he does dismiss the claim that “American university campuses are racist,” Kennedy does not fit easily into any particular partisan box. His views on race, in particular, are nuanced and complex. McWhorter explains:

His suspicion of race-based pride is not because of any numbness to the visceral feeling himself, but out of, in part, a wariness that such tribalism will lead a group to recapitulate the sins of the oppressor. Here is a book in which “maybe” occurs three times in the final paragraph.

Overall, McWhorter’s review of “SAY IT LOUD!” is highly complimentary. He commends Kennedy for his rational intellectual style, and for his temperate (i.e. realistic) views regarding the speed of social progress. For this reason, however, McWhorter suggests that some readers may find the collection of essays challenging: “Kennedy is someone who studiously resists feeling over thinking, and in considerable part for that reason ‘Say It Loud!’ is not a book most will be inclined to take on vacation.” 


Read the full review here.



For Newsweek, FAIR Advisor Erec Smith wrote an opinion piece responding to criticisms that Nicole Hannah-Jones, originator of The New York Times’ “1916 Project,” made about FAIR Advisor Angel Eduardo’s recent article in Newsweek titled "Stop Calling Me White for Having the Wrong Opinions." In the piece, Eduardo expressed his desire to turn in his so-called “race card” and be treated as an individual. Smith described Hannah-Jones’ criticism as an example of what he calls the “erase and replace” fallacy. 

Erase and replace is a combination of the strawman and ad hominem logical fallacies. The move involves taking the argument someone is making and substituting it for one that fits more neatly into the woke victim narrative by specifically targeting the character of the challenger—since it is, in part, their character that is the greatest challenge.

Smith gives several more real-world examples of “erase and replace” in action, such as when FAIR Advisor Kmele Foster was accused of “defending white supremacy” for claiming that free speech is beneficial to oppressed minorities because it gives them a voice that may have otherwise been silenced.

“Unfortunately,” Smith says, “this phenomenon is something that black thinkers who deviate from the antiracist narrative know all too well. And it has happened to me, too.”

Read the full article here.



For Persuasion, FAIR Advisor Zaid Jilani argued that we ought not wish the worst fate on our political adversaries, lest we become the very type of person we claim to oppose. He holds that we ought to be relentlessly pro-human and show great compassion for those who view the world differently from us. 

There is a reason our greatest traditions, both religious and secular, tell us to love our enemies. That imperative is particularly important in the face of rising social and political polarization.

Jilani illustrates how, in the context of the pandemic and the subsequent debates surrounding vaccines and treatments, there is a great deal of dehumanizing and vitriolic exchanges taking place online that only leads to more animosity and divisiveness. Jilani states:

As hundreds of thousands of Americans have perished from COVID-19, political partisans have taken to exploiting some of these deaths to engage in grave-dancing by publicly shaming or humiliating people whom they perceived to have been reckless during the pandemic.


Read the full article here.


NEW: FAIR Spotlight

Each week we hope to spotlight a member of the FAIR community to hear about what FAIR means to you and why you support our mission. If you would like to share with us your personal stories and reasons you value FAIR to be featured in this section of our weekly newsletter, please send a photo of yourself and a paragraph to [email protected].


Upcoming Events


On September 11th from 1:00pm-4:00pm EDT, join FAIR Advisor Erec Smith and other notable speakers as they discuss Growing Diversity of Thought in K-12 Education: Current Challenges and the Path Forward.


Learn more and register here.


On September 22nd from 8:00pm-9:30pm EST, FAIR will be hosting a Mental Health Webinar titled “A Path Forward: Protecting Students’ Mental Health in a Divisive World.” 

The panel will include FAIR members and former educators Paul Rossi and Dana Stangel-Plowe, psychoanalyst, parent coach, and author Erica Komisar, LCSW, and healthcare expert Dr. Carrie Mendoza, MD, and Brooklyn Technical High School senior Daniel Idfresne. Panelists will discuss how ideologies that fixate on immutable traits contribute to childhood anxiety and depression, the ways human psychology is being manipulated to push illiberal ideas, the psychological impact of shaming and silencing speech, and much more.

NOTE: Last week the sign-up page for the webinar was unexpectedly down for an hour, so if you were unable to register we urge you to please try again.


Register for the event here.


On September 21st, 22nd, and 23rd from 6:00pm-7:30pm EDT, FAIR will be hosting several Grassroots Advocacy Training Workshops for members. 

Discover the foundational importance of community building in creating positive, pro-human, bottom-up change; learn techniques for building a long-term, sustainable movement; and realize the power in sharing your why ­story to inspire others to join you in advancing the vision of FAIRness for all.

Connect your personal why to the heartbeat of FAIR; engage in self-discovery of how you can contribute to this pro-human movement; and learn a powerful organizing tool to envision how you can make a difference and get others plugged-in to where they can make a difference too!

Get frameworks and checklists to help you be the expert on your locality and learn tools to maximize your ability to influence the influencers for the issues, causes, and programs aligned with the pro-human FAIR vision.

The sessions are cumulative, so we encourage members to take them in order. Each training is interactive and invites your full participation. Come ready to engage with the facilitator and your fellow FAIR members!


On September 21st at 7:00pm EDT, the Heterodox Academy is hosting a webinar titled “Constituting Knowledge, Knowing Truth,” where Heterodox Academy co-founder Jonathan Haidt will be having an in-depth discussion with Jonathan Rauch, author of The Constitution of Knowledge: A Defense of Truth. They will discuss ways to resist conformist culture in classrooms and research, how to encourage inquiry into unorthodox ideas, and ways to ensure our epistemic institutions continue to seek and know the truth. 


Get more information and register here


Join the FAIR Community

Click here to become a FAIR volunteer, or to either lead or join a FAIR chapter:

Join a Welcome to FAIR Zoom information session to learn more about our mission by clicking here. Or, watch a previously recorded session click here to visit the Member section of www.fairforall.org.

Sign the FAIR Pledge for a common culture of fairness, understanding and humanity.

Join the FAIR community to connect and share information with other members.

Join or start a FAIR chapter in your state, to help launch the pro-human movement.

Foundation Against Intolerance & Racism
485 Madison Avenue, 16th Floor  | New York, New York 10022
[email protected]

Follow Us