American Flag Deemed ‘Hate’ Symbol by School DEI Trainer

By: Georgia | Last updated: Jun 11, 2024

A diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) trainer expressed concerns about the American flag, suggesting it might be becoming a symbol of “hate” and “extremism.” 

This statement has ignited considerable debate among educators and the broader community about the symbolism of national icons in contemporary society.

DEI Is in Decline

Throughout the US, schools, colleges, and universities have been abandoning their DEI initiatives due to a new policy where they are no longer being funded.

A person holding up a whiteboard that says "Hello my pronouns are" in multicolors.

Alexander Grey/Unsplash

One such group is the University of North Carolina System Board of Governors, who voted to remove all DEI initiatives from all universities in the state, which has sparked debate as to whether this was a good or bad decision.


Taxpayers Are Paying Millions for DEI Consultants

These DEI consultants come at a cost, and that is often to the taxpayer. As one example, taxpayers in Canada have been paying $30 million since 2019 for DEI consultants.

A pile of $100 notes.

Giorgio Trovato/Unsplash

When these figures were revealed, many people were shocked. While some were happy that their tax money was going towards these initiatives, others weren’t so impressed and have demanded their money be used elsewhere.

Critical Race Theory and Employment

Dr. Nancy Dome, a prominent DEI trainer, has been vocal about her stance on Critical Race Theory (CRT) in the education system. 

Portrait of Dr. Nancy Dome smiling, wearing a pink shawl and a scarf

Source: Dr Nancy Dome/Facebook

She believes that employees who resist CRT do not fit within the educational culture, stating in her published work that these employees are a “poison to culture and climate.”

Resistant Employees Should Be Fired

Dr Dome has said that employees who don’t agree with these initiatives should be fired and that “they do not belong” in that line of work.

A blue man hunched over in an office chair with blocks on his desk spelling out the word "Fired?"

Igor Omilaev/Unsplash

She has also said there is no point in showing compassion towards someone who refuses to see your point of view and that it is a waste of time to even engage in conversation with them.

Taking Inspiration From Divorce

When two people are married and continuously stop being able to see eye to eye, they tend to get divorced and move on from one another.

A certificate of divorce with a red pen on top.


According to Dr. Dome, the same should be applied to a working relationship. If you cannot agree with someone you work with, especially if that person isn’t willing to adjust, then they need to be removed, either from the team or organization.


Implementing the Color Line Exercise

The color line exercise introduced by Dr. Dome in DEI training sessions assigns scores to employees based on their perceived level of oppression. 

A hand holding a pink sign that reads "Equity Diversity Inclusion #notalone" during a public rally

Source: Wikimedia Commons

This exercise is designed to make participants aware of societal privileges and inequalities visually.


Teacher's Reaction to DEI Training

Isaac Newman, a teacher who participated in DEI training, described the experience as “insane.” 

A classroom setting with diverse students focused on a teacher speaking at the front

Source: Taylor Flowe/Unsplash

He expressed his frustration with the compulsory nature of the training and the lack of clarity about the consequences of non-participation.


Shifting from Equality to Equity

Dr. Dome advocates for equity over equality, arguing that individuals should receive varying levels of support based on their specific needs. 

A person pointing to a stone inscription that states belief in universal rights to education, equality, and freedom for all

Source: Dr Nancy Dome/Facebook

This approach, she believes, is more effective in addressing disparities within the educational system.


Equality vs Equity

In a LinkedIn post, Dr. Dome addressed the differences between equality and equity, as well as why and how people can easily confuse the two.

A person holding up a cardboard sign that says, "It's a privilege to educate yourself about racism instead of experiencing it!!!"

James Eades/Unsplash

In the post, she claims that without equity, equality can never be achieved and that if we didn’t have equity, people would end up resorting to a life of crime.


People Worried Equity Will Take Something Away From Them

People’s main concern about equity and why they prefer to focus on equality is that they are worried that using equity will result in something being taken away from them.

A sign on a wall that says, "Acknowledge your privilege!"

Jon Tyson/Unsplash

This is because equity involves being able to get what one needs, even if it’s different from what someone else can get. To them, it can feel that a privilege is being denied to them, whereas one person is able to receive it. However, what it really means is that everyone is getting their needs met in ways that best suit them.


Companies Are Abandoning DEI Initiatives

It’s not just education facilities that are abandoning DEI initiatives, as companies in other areas are doing the same thing. This comes four years after most big businesses had developed these initiatives to show they were committed to diversity.

A rainbow puddle.

Jordan McDonald/Unsplash

With businesses struggling with rising costs, they have to cut costs somewhere, and have chosen to let go of those holding DEI positions. However, DEI experts say they are making a huge mistake and that the long-term consequences will be catastrophic.


Epoch Education's Influence

Epoch Education, led by Dr. Dome, serves as a DEI consultant for several large school districts. 

A celebratory banner for Epoch Education's 10th anniversary featuring a photo of Dr. Nancy Dome and various handwritten words related to education and race

Source: Dr Nancy Dome/Facebook

The organization promotes an equity agenda, impacting tens of thousands of students and educators across these districts.


Epoch Education and the US Department of Education

Epoch Education has listed the US Department of Education as one of its clients, who will likely source all of these materials for schools throughout the US.

The seal for the US Department of Education with a tree in the center.

US Army Heraldry Directorate/Wikimedia Commons

However, how involved the company is with the Department of Education isn’t entirely known, but it likely means that more school districts than the ones listed are subject to its principles.


Promoting CRT Principles

Epoch Education actively promotes the principles of CRT through its media channels, including YouTube. 

A wooden table with the hands of four people of different skin colors, showing a gesture of unity and collaboration

Source: Clay Banks/Unsplash

These materials emphasize the importance of recognizing systemic inequalities and the insufficiency of color blindness and meritocracy as solutions.


Details of the DEI Scoring System

During DEI sessions, participants are asked to score themselves based on a series of prompts about race, with scores reflecting their level of societal privilege. 

A group of people with hands together in the center of a circle, wearing colorful winter clothing

Source: Hannah Busing/Unsplash

White women and men often score higher, indicating systemic advantages.


The Color Line Makes Employees Line Up

Once employees have taken part in the color line test, they are then asked to line up in order from who scored the most to who scored the least.

A group of people of different races standing in circle with their hands in the center.


This is done so that people can see a visual representation of what the color line actually looks like, with white people often being at the top and black people often being towards the bottom.


The American Flag Is a Reminder of Pain

According to Dr. Dome, the American flag is a symbol of the oppression of blacks, racism, and prejudice.

The American flag on a flagpole.

Aaron Burden/Unsplash

She then went on to say that the American flag’s existence in schools and in the workplace is a constant reminder to those people of the hurt they have been through, serving as a painful reminder of past experiences. Therefore, it should be removed.


The Left Have Taken Things Too Far

With Dr. Dome suggesting that the American flag needs to be removed, some say that the left has been taking things too far and needs to be stopped.

A close-up of the American flag.

Joshua Hoehne/Unsplash

This is especially true for those who are fed up with the anti-American agenda and who firmly believe that the flag and everything else Epoch Education and other DEI companies stand against should still be allowed in society.


Unconstitutional To Prohibit Flying the Flag

Those who were present when these comments were made weren’t happy at the suggestion of removing the American flag, claiming it as being unconstitutional.

A close-up of the American flag.

Samuel Branch/Unsplash

While she was there to promote the opposite, these comments displayed some bias and discriminatory language as it goes against the freedom and democracy that the flag stands for.


Critiquing Liberal Ideologies

Epoch Education’s materials critique common liberal ideologies such as incremental change and color blindness.

A protestor holds a cardboard sign saying "Equality in Diversity" with a cityscape background

Source: Amy Elting/Unsplash

They describe them as inadequate in addressing the profound effects of racism in society.


Addressing Racism in Educational Videos

A September 2020 video by Epoch Education clearly states that racism influences all domains of society, including education. 

A hand holds up a cardboard sign that reads "Everybody vs Racism" at a public demonstration

Source: Arthur Edelmans/Unsplash

This video is part of their effort to educate on the pervasive impact of racial inequalities.


Mandatory DEI Training Concerns

Newman’s concerns about mandatory DEI training highlight a significant tension in educational policies. 

Colorful sticky notes arranged in a circle around the words "Diversity & Inclusion" written on a white circle

Source: Wikimedia Commons

His experience reflects a broader discomfort among some educators with the directions of such training.


The Community Model of Equity

Dr. Dome argues for a community-based approach to equity, suggesting that ensuring the well-being of every community member leads to a safer and more prosperous society for all. 

A person at a rally holds up a sign stating "End Systemic Racism" with a crowd and monuments in the background

Source: Clay Banks/Unsplash

She emphasizes the interconnectedness of individual success and community health in her writing.