Creating a Cabinet Level Department of National Equity

By Frank Ellsworth Lockwood

This article is about Racial tension and moving toward a Green Party Policy. It is meant to be a conversation starter, and obviously not the final word on GP national policy.

By way of disclosure: Frank Ellsworth Lockwood is an old White man from a Protestant upbringing. Now that we have that out of the way, his family is multi-racial and he worked for fifteen years as a resource room teacher (and at times as a teacher’s consultant) in Migrant and Bilingual Education in Hermiston, Oregon. He is a co-founder of the Green Party of the Mid-Columbia and now resides in Kennewick, Washington. Lockwood holds a master’s degree in Education from Eastern Oregon State University.

In my opinion, the Green Party needs to come up with a better response to racial tensions in the USA. These tensions and the militarization of police, indeed the state of policing, are closely related and there may be some overlap for purposes of this paper.

  1. Create a Department of National Equity (DNE): Racial equity is such an important issue right now that it needs to be elevated to the status of a Department of State alongside other departments such as the U.S. Department of Agriculture, U.S. Department of Commerce, U.S. Department of Defense, U.S. Department of Education, and U.S. Department of Energy.
    1. This should be a Department overseen and run by members of specifically targeted groups such as blacks, browns, LGBT people, women
      1. Black, Native, women and LGBT inclusion
      2. Black, Native, women and LGBT oversight
      3. Roughly equal numbers of men and women and proportional inclusion of non-binary genders
  2. Create a national standard of policing:  The DNE should be charged with creating a national standard of policing. There are two ways we could go with this, depending on how much support we have. States could be compelled to comply by withholding of federal funds. Although states could refuse to comply, the DNE will exert pressure by pointing out flaws and failures to comply in each of the states, shaming them in nationally televised “exposure reports.”
  3. Power to approve/disapprove education funds: The DNE will exert influence over the distribution of Federal education dollars to the various states or school districts. Schools that do not provide an equal education to minorities will receive federal education funds tied to specific evidence of progress.[1]
  4. Prevent and revoke the militarization of police forces.
  5. Make the law Explicitly prevent the President from using the regular army, mercenaries, or militias against the people of the United States.
  6. Pass laws forbidding the deployment of regular military forces against the wishes of the state and city governments for less than treasonous reasons (by which I mean to imply, civil war or attempts to militarily overthrow the government).

  

[1] As an aside: Schools should not be allowed to redirect 1.5 and 2.0 full time equivalency (FTE) funds to their general funds when those have been designated based upon at-risk or needy populations such as migrant, educable mentally retarded or other similar factors. Funds over 1 FTE that are distributed for the purpose of serving high-need or at-risk students should be applied directly to those programs that directly meet those needs. Likewise, funds distributed to address inequities must be spent for that purpose, not to support the school’s general fund for education, regular school sports, etc.

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2 Comments

  1. This helped! Thank you. We need a more comprehensive guide for the midterms. This was a great start! We should have every ballot measure and the list of candidates we should be aware of and why.

    I would like to help. Started by voting Green today. Just like I did for Jill!

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