Collected Wisps of Thought











{February 22, 2007}   Newbery Controversy

I just found out that people are banning the book that won the Newbery because it uses the word “scrotum”. The girl in the book overhears someone say that his dog got bit by a snake in the scrotum.

This has sparked a NY Times article and has caused people to pull the book from their schools and libraries. What??? The NY Times finds it worth an Op Ed piece because the word scrotum is used in a book for kids in third through sixth grade?

I think this is very indicative of how warped our country is in its attidude to sex. We use sex to sell every conceivable product from hamburgers to college loans — we print pants with the words “Sexy” across the butt and market them to six year olds, we show people of every age, race, and gender making out on the top of a car because their toothpaste is so fabulous… and yet, when it comes to anything that might present the ACTUAL human body in a realistic light, we run for the hills. Heaven forbid our children might find out the names for our body parts.

I can’t even begin to express how disappointed this makes me in the good old USA. Let’s saturate our kids with violence. Show them 10,000 murders by the time they reach adolescensce. Taunt them with Barbie dolls with breast sizes they will never achieve without plastic surgery. Dress them up in all the latest manifestations of materialism. But ban the book that wins an award for the zenith of literary achievement because it uses an actual name for a body part. A body part that 50% of the book’s readers have.

Shame on us.

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Okay, I have to argue the Barbie part ’cause I never thought I’d look like Barbie (and when, after my kids were born, I had Barbie Breasts, I had them reduced!). And I loooooooved my Barbies.

Otherwise, I am TOTALLY with you.

How can we start a grass-roots uproar and rebellion? Let’s do it!



John says:

I definately agree. It seems that all of the good authors are the most commonly banned: you, JK Rowling (“Harry Potter books”), Lois Lowry (“The Giver”), Katherine Paterson (“Bridge to Terabithia”), and now Susan Patron (“The Higher Power of Lucky”). I just don’t understand why people are so ignorant, they are violating the BILL OF RIGHTS! People need to grow brains.



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