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Millions of American Rescue Plan Money Went to Woke SJW Programs Aimed at Kids

You may have never heard of a federal government agency called the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), and while it may exist under the radar, it has no problem spending COVID-19 relief package money – millions, in fact – on programs that push “anti-racist” education and “social activism” for children.

This agency, another part of the unelected administrative state, is charged with supporting libraries and museums across the country and spent $15,255,733 in American Rescue Plan (ARP) Act project grants which were awarded “to institutions across 49 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico to support the role of museums and libraries in recovering from the coronavirus pandemic,” as reported by FoxNews.

In a review of all of the grant recipients we learn that much of the funding received had little to do with pandemic recovery efforts. Most alarming are the child-focused “anti-racist” education and “social activism” projects which received a good portion of the grant.

FoxNews listed examples of the grants the IMLS awarded to various institutions for woke programming and projects around the country:

  • $49,632 to the Rochester Museum and Science Center in New York for a field trip for third-grade students that will “utilize the ‘Take It Down’ exhibit, which tells the story of a community led effort to remove racist artwork from a historic carousel, as a tool for anti-racism education.
  • $43,400 to the Minneapolis Institute of Arts to train guides to “incorporate greater cultural fluency and responsiveness into their tours using an anti-racist lens,” and to “introduce new tour topics for school audiences” regarding “social-emotional learning, identity, empathy, and social activism,” according to the IMLS website.
  • $50,000 to The Brooklyn Museum to create an “intensive arts education curricula” for underserved schools and to produce “content that addresses history and art through an anti-racist lens.

Not all of the IMLS grants were awarded to programs geared towards children, but several programs that received grants appeared to have no obvious economic need for pandemic funds in order to recover from the shutdowns:

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  • $50,000 went to The Studio Museum in Harlem, New York, to build a 9-foot bronze statue in Marcus Garvey Park that “addresses Black masculinity, stereotypes and shared diasporic experiences.”
  • $49,750 was awarded to Historic New England in Boston to hire a curatorial fellow to help “amplify marginalized voices and represent a complete history of the region,” as well as to catalog and digitize “A Time to Remember,” the nonprofit’s collecting initiative documenting the impacts of the Black Lives Matter movement and the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • $33,000 granted to Northwest Mississippi Community College to create campus “safe spaces” where students can engage on topics dealing with “post-pandemic stress, racial injustice, diversity/inclusion, and resilience.”
  • $50,000 to The Anchorage Museum in Alaska to hire a “programmatic staff member to collaborate with and support communities of color and LGBTQ communities, as well as a curator to work with communities on climate change and climate justice.”

The American Recovery Plan (ARP) passed in March 2021 with no Congressional Republican voting for it. Biden touted “his” plan as necessary to support the country through the COVID-19 pandemic, with every dollar of funding going to essential programs and institutions. But ARP has been the focus of scrutiny due to runaway inflation which is now over 8.6%, leading to even Democrat advisors from the former Obama administration to raise the alarm, calling Brandon’s $1.9 trillion bill ‘a mistake.’

Republican South Carolina Rep. Ralph Norman minced no words in calling for an audit of the entire American Recovery Plan in a statement to Fox News Digital, pointing out the unfettered spending without oversight:

“Like an out-of-control firehose, the federal government has been spewing trillions of dollars under the guise of Covid relief, without any real guardrails or oversight,” he said. “I don’t care how long it takes – we need a top-down audit on how every dollar of the American Rescue Plan has been spent. Any individual or organization who utilized these funds ought to be able to provide a thorough defense of their decisions. And anyone who spent ARP dollars outside the letter or spirit of that law must be held to account.”