The folks at Breitbart.com released a video (details here) purporting to show that Barack Obama was/is closely associated with a well-known former Harvard University law professor (Derrick Bell, now deceased) who espoused and taught a theory of race relations called Critical Race Theory. CRT is usually preceded by the word “controversial,” although it shouldn’t be, because all it says, very basically, is that racism is so ingrained in American institutions that law, or at least law alone, is not sufficient to address racial inequities. There is, of course, a lot more to it — here is a scholarly essay from the UCLA School of Public Affairs, and a more popularly written one at Wisegeek.com — but at its core this is close to being just common sense for any reasonably informed and educated adult person who grew up in the United States. It’s certainly not pleasant, and certainly it can be debated and challenged, but it’s hardly a shockingly outrageous idea.
Anyway, it turns out that the video was creatively edited, and doesn’t even show, when viewed without the cuts, what the Breitbart people claim it shows. That, too, is nothing new.