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Donald Trump’s surprising capturing of the presidency in 2016 ushered in something more toxic and disquieting than himself: an exponential growth in Republican public officials across the nation feeling extraordinarily comfortable telling conspicuous lies about matters of serious consequence.

Unfortunately, this kind of lying has become normative for many Republicans. Their dangerous attempt to reframe a lie as truth is encapsulated in former senior counselor for Trump Kellyanne Conway’s infamous and preposterous notion of “alternative facts.” Although many wish this era of “alternative facts'' would have ceased as soon as Trump left the White House, too many Republicans are revealing “alternative facts” are here for the foreseeable future.

Inspired by Trump’s modeling of the art of lying — lethal lying, especially during his four years in the White House — many Republican governors and other Republican elected officials, including Republican school board members, across the nation are employing “alternative facts” to ban or attempt to ban the teaching of critical race theory in K–12 schools. To date, not one vociferous Republican official opposing it has been able to articulate exactly what it is and/or supply any specific and accurate information about the writings that comprise it.