Transcript for 6 Dr. Seuss books to stop being published over racist imagery
Welcome back. Today's read across America day which coincides with the birthday of the beloved children's author Dr. Seuss and six of his tights will no longer be published because they contain racist imagery. And some people say, well, okay. Some people will, like, this is cancel culture. What's your thought on all this, You know, as you know, whoopi, I'm not a fan of this term cancel culture, more appropriately deemed consequence I'm not sure about how I feel about this, because censorship is also something that I'm not a fan of as an attorney. I'm not familiar with these six books. But when I did do some research, there are some racist imagery, examples of racist imagery in those books. A character described as a Chinese man who eats with sticks the depiction of that character has a pointed hat, slit eyes, there's another book, if I ran a zoo, two men from Africa, shoeless, wearing grass skirts as they carry exotic animals. When children open up those books and perhaps see images of themselves distorted in a stereotype call way, they do learn a powerful lesson about how they may be devalued in society and that's not a lesson I would want my children to learn in that way, so I'm just not sure. You're torn? I'm just not sure. I'm torn. Sara? I wanted to react to what sunny said. I think a consequence of these they do inappropriate depictions of people, I agree maybe these six books should be taken off and maybe put in a museum or a place to honor Dr. Seuss's other work, his portfolio. Cancel culture is when you eliminate him in all of the good work he did. President Biden removed him from read across America day completely, there are a lot of works Dr. Seuss did that were good that he's praised for, so I think in general that we need to teach these examples as they were not white wash them, not LE limb Nate or erase them. We're all flawed. Our heroes are often flawed. I think it's better to teach both to show the great works of Dr. Seuss but also include that disclaimers that some of his work was considered racially insensitive. Recently I watched a movie with the kids a caption at the beginning said some of these characters have been falsely depicted. But it allowed the work to be remain in history. I agree with those books being taken out. Okay. What about you, joy, do you think they should have pulled the books? I do not like erasing art. I do not think it's wise or smart. That's my position. I think that these books. I like It I think these books are teaching tools. If I were teaching a class right now, I'd bring them right into the class to see what he was thinking, do you think it's racist? Is it racist? Let's discuss it. If you eliminate these books, take things away, there's no way to discuss what's in the book, it's not an educational motive in my opinion. Gone with the wind, it shows slaves that they were happy,s a point for discussion, now let's show, let's read the history book now, this is the real. This is the fictitious I think even elementary school children can learn from these books. I think it's an absolute outrage to remove books, period. Yeah. Anna, what's your thought on When I heard this about the cat in the hat, I just asked, what? He didn't do all that. Don't hit with the cancel bat. Look, on a serious note, I think there's to lot of very serious systemic racism issues that need to be addressed before we get to Dr. Seuss, I think today there are many, many books that depict children of color, black, brown, of all sort of colors and creeds that weren't around decades ago that are around today for children to read, but I want to see a lot of statues removed and bridges renamed, I want to see equity in getting covid vaccines, I want to see equity in education. I want to see equity in opportunity before I get to Dr. Seuss. I'm sorry, he's one of the last on my list. Well, just, you know, I always believed that you should include in the book, here's what this is. This book was written in 1950, you know, to think I saw that on mullberry street, 1950. Beyond zebra 1955, there are six books. He's written over 40 books. Put it in the front, this book was written at a time when people thought that this was okay, we no longer think it's okay and that's why we're letting you know. You know, it's like words in books. You can't, you can't change the way someone saw it. What you saw in 1870 is not what you see in 2021. So you have to sort of measure it and be aware of it and know and always make the conversation that's not what we do now. That's what they did then. I feel like people don't have to be so crazed that they have to eliminate everything. What what you have to do is acknowledge that it was there. That's the biggest problem. People didn't acknowledged it. They didn't say, well, we shouldn't think that gone with the wind is the way we should think about slavery. Maybe, you know, there are other things that we can talk about, and yes, have the conversation, but if you don't have the conversation it's really hard to explain to people why something has disappeared.
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