President Donald Trump accused schools of teaching students "hateful lies about this country" and said he would be taking steps to "restore patriotic education" as he continued his opposition to efforts designed at raising awareness about racial inequalities.
Speaking at what the White House describes as a "conference on American history," Trump said he plans to sign an executive order soon creating a "national commission to support patriotic education" called the 1776 commission and is directing funding to create a patriotic curriculum for schools.
"Our youth will be taught to love America with all of their heart and all of their souls," Trump said. The White House declined to say when Trump would sign the executive order.
He also took aim at the 1619 Project, a New York Times-backed initiative described as focusing on the "consequences of slavery and the contributions of black Americans at the very center of the story we tell ourselves about who we are as a country." The project, which won the Pulitzer Prize, was released last year to coincide with the anniversary of slaves being brought to the Virginia colony 400 years ago.
Trump has been increasingly opposing anti-racism education efforts while denying the country has a problem with racial inequality. When asked about the country’s history of racial discrimination at a town hall this week, Trump said "I hope there’s not a race problem" before going on to talk about his support in the polls by Black voters.
Earlier this month, the Office of Management and Budget issued a directive prohibiting departments from using federal funds to administer diversity training that incorporates teachings about critical race theory and white privilege. Trump himself also threatened to cut off funding from schools that teach the 1619 Project.