It's a sad day for school children in Accomack County Public Schools in Virginia. Accomack County, a peninsula between the Chesapeake Bay and the Atlantic Ocean, is probably best known for Chincoteague Island, a small island famous for wild ponies and the annual “Pony Penning” event.
Accomack County Public School system can now be known for setting back time and forcing censorship in the name of political correctness.
It seems a parent of one of their students (just one) complained to the school system because two classic books - “To Kill A Mockingbird” and “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” - have racial slurs in them. The school system has “temporarily” pulled them from all county school libraries.
Apparently, rather than deal with the truth that both classic books were written with the authentic language of the period about which they were written and, therefore, were not meant to be racist but merely accurate, is more than the school wants to deal with.
Harper Lee and Mark Twain gave us outstanding stories depicting real life in the South. The language in each book was accurate. Neither author meant to offend anyone but instead to tell a story that was believable. How sad that in 2016 we have become so “enlightened” that school officials ban them because someone is offended by words. Perhaps the school system will next set up safe spaces.
It would appear that Huck Finn's friendship with Jim and the development of Jim's character in the story are simply dismissed because the N word is part of the story. Likewise, and for the same reason, the actions of Atticus Finch in defending Tom Robinson, falsely accused of rape, to the best of his ability despite anger and negative pressure from the townsfolk, are also dismissed. And those dismissals are because of non-politically correct language that is accurate and fitting for the story itself.
Harper Lee won a Pulitzer Prize for her book. And today it's banned?
Political correctness is turning this country into a land of whiners and crybabies. People believe they now have the right not to be offended by anyone or anything – and our school systems are reinforcing those beliefs by doing their best to prevent anyone from being offended.
The coddling of college students following the election shows that our young people today cannot deal with real life and adulthood. And now it seems secondary schools are preparing the younger children to grow up to be college crybabies.
I wonder if the child of the parent who complained about the two books listens to rap music....?
To the parents of young people who will be reading classic books in the near future... talk to your kids. Explain to them that life isn't perfect, that words won't harm them and that a book doesn't have to be banned simply because there are words in it that in today's society have been deemed unacceptable in Politically Correctville.
These two classic stories are bigger and more important than the N word. To Kill A Mockingbird is one of the best novels I have read. To deny students the chance to read such a poignant book is to deny them the chance to learn about values and integrity. Atticus Finch should be considered a hero in every sense of the word and in both the white and black communities. His personal convictions are something which each of us should try to emulate.
To say the school system overreacted to the complaint of one parent is an understatement. And that's part of the problem with today's society. One complaint draws an immediate reaction rather than time and consideration of the larger picture. Where will it end?