Wisconsin Law Review
With heightened expectations for a reckoning in response to the broad support for the Black Lives Matter movement after the senseless murder of George Floyd in 2020, employers explored many options to improve racial understanding through discussions with workers. In rejecting any notions of the existence of structural or systemic discrimination, let alone the need to address the consequences of such discrimination, certain groups have begun to oppose BLM by seeking to diminish any social justice actions. One of those key resistance efforts includes labelling in pejorative terms any employers that pursue anti-racism objectives via social justice statements or internal initiatives as being “woke” workplaces. These groups have also criticized employers who adopt diversity, equity, and inclusion training to help workers address racial differences by arguing these sessions apply divisive Critical Race Theory principles that discriminate against and seek to stigmatize white participants. By using CRT and woke labels as weapons, critics leave employers in the unenviable position of determining how to implement anti-racism trainings in an environment of BLM reforms and race discrimination concerns. These all-encompassing anti-anti-racism narratives now force employers to show how their DEI trainings and related initiatives do not discriminate against white employees.
University of Wisconsin Law School
Michael Z. Green,
Wis. L. Rev.
Available at: https://scholarship.law.tamu.edu/facscholar/1808