Ty Smith, a black Illinois father who said he has earned two medical degrees, delivered a blistering speech against critical race theory at a recent district school board meeting that has resonated with much of the country.
In the speech that went viral and was even shared by Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, Smith preached the very basics of traditional American values: self-determination and hard work.
“You talk about Critical Race Theory, which is pretty much going to be teaching kids how to hate each other, how to dislike each other,” Smith proclaimed. “You’re going to deliberately teach kids, ‘This white kid right here got it better than you because he’s white’? You’re going to purposely tell a white kid, ‘Oh, the black people are all down and oppressed’? How do I have two medical degrees if I’m sitting here oppressed?”
“No mom, no dad in the house,” he continued. “Worked my way through college, sat there and hustled my butt off to get through college. You gonna tell me somebody that looked like all y’all white folks kept me from doing that? Are you serious? Not one white person ever came to me and said, ‘Well, son, you know you’ll never be able to get anywhere because the black people.’”
Smith said black people in America are being told by other black people they cannot accomplish anything because the white man is going to keep them down.
Ted Cruz was one of many who tweeted the viral video, labeling it fiery and ‘powerful’:
Watch this parent absolutely obliterate Critical Race Theory at an Illinois school board meeting:
“How do I have two medical degrees if I’m sitting here oppressed?” pic.twitter.com/gmCRJaphXt
— Benny (@bennyjohnson) June 17, 2021
“Well, how did I get where I am right now if some white person kept me down?” he asked, expressing amazement that the nation is at such a point where Critical Race Theory is so widely accepted.
Noting that Dr. Martin Luther King taught us to judge people by their character and not their skin color or race, Smith said CRT is the “complete reverse” of this. He also said that many black adults in the community don’t buy into the “nonsense” of CRT, and that children are being hurt most by teaching it.
Smith appeared on Fox News and was asked why there isn’t more focus on hard work today.
“I think people are scared to face the reality that in America you can probably do what you want to,” Smith said.
He also clarified that his mother was around, but being alone with four sons proved to be more than she could deal with.
Married for 20 years, Smith explained his hectic schedule while in college. Starting a 7:00 a.m., his days ended at 11:00 p.m., when he got off from his furniture warehouse job. But even then, he would “hit the books and study from midnight into the wee hours of the morning to repeat the process while taking care of my wife and two sons.”
“To be able to hustle and go through all that it’s hard for me to accept anybody that says they can’t do anything they want to do because some type of system or invisible white father entity is holding them down,” he said.
Which is not to say that Smith didn’t endure challenges along the way, but he said his solution was to search for another strategy to achieve his goal.
“Anybody that wants to have anything in their life that they really truly desire and want they won’t let anything hold them back,” Smith said. “Failure is not a bad thing. Failure is just saying that strategy didn’t work so let’s try from a different perspective and different angle. People don’t want that, though.”
He also insisted that critical race theory is not an important discussion in America.
“To me it’s a whole bunch of nonsense, virtue signaling,” he said. “Just trying to play off people’s emotion. The only race there is is the human race. I never raised my sons to see anybody’s color. Color was never discussed in my house at all.”
“When it comes down to it, people are just people,” Smith continued. “My sons never had to talk about white or Asian people.”
As for support, Smith said 80% of African-Americans are supporting him
“Coming from the ghetto, coming from the projects, they see me come out of it. They are supporting it,” he said. “But you do have people that’s part of a narrative that don’t know me that have a whole different agenda… They are trying to push what the left wants them to do. Like black people can’t succeed.”
Fox News co-host Dana Perino asked Smith for his secret to 20 years of marriage.
“The secret to happiness is keeping Jesus first. Absolutely,” he replied, explaining that he and his wife have a personal relationship with the Lord and that’s what keeps them together.
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