Greg Abbott Cites Racist and Sexist Social Scientist in Pre-K Education Plan

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Ted Nugent isn't the only questionable figure behind Greg Abbott's campaign.

In his pre-K education plan, Abbott cited conservative social scientist Charles Murray—who believes, among other things, that men are more biologically equipped to be scientists and that people in poverty are “born lazy.”

Murray has also written that “no woman has been a significant original thinker in any of the world's great philosophical traditions.”

So how's that rebranding thing going, GOP?

Read below the jump for more on Charles Murray.“Family background has the most decisive effect on student achievement, contributing to a large performance gap between children from economically disadvantaged families and those from middle class homes,” Abbott's education plan reads, citing Murray's text Real Education.

That statement certainly has some truth to it, though I would argue that school funding and class size play an important role as well.

In Murray's book that Abbott cites, he argues that the children with family backgrounds that he judges to be subpar should be identified in early education and encouraged to choose vocational programs.

In other words, Abbott's pre-K plan is informed by a conservative thinker who believes that many girls and children in poverty should not even have the opportunity for a college preparatory education, because they are “less educable.”

Here's what Annie's List has to say:

This week, Greg Abbott released an education plan citing author Charles Murray.


In his op-ed titled, “Where are the Female Einsteins?” Murray inaccurately attributes the smaller number of female leaders in art and science fields to biological causes.


Annie's List Executive Director Grace Garcia released the following statement responding to Abbott's citing Murray:


“Greg Abbott's citing Charles Murray shouldn't be overlooked – in fact, it's a clear indication he doesn't share the values of the majority of Texans. Murray's comments about women are belittling, sexist and downright appalling. And now Greg Abbott has chosen to base his policies on Murray's work. That's unacceptable.


“I guess I shouldn't be surprised. This is the same candidate who appeared with Ted Nugent after many called on him to cancel their events together – and then refused to distance himself from Nugent and his anti-woman comments.


“And it's the same candidate who has failed to give the people of Texas an adequate answer on equal pay, except to hide behind surrogates and staffers who say women don't need protections for fair pay in Texas.


“Every day, we learn more about the kind of governor Greg Abbott would be. And every day, he chooses to side against Texas women and families. The people of Texas deserve better.”


About Author

Natalie San Luis

Natalie is a native Texan, a feminist, and a writer, focusing on reproductive justice, race, and pop culture. When she's not writing (and sometimes when she is), she's brewing beer, drinking beer, and reading stuff on the Internet. Her work has been featured on The Huffington Post, xoJane, The Billfold, Culturemap, and E3W Review of Books. She tweets from @nsanluis.

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