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Six Dr. Seuss books taken out of publication due to ‘offensive’ content

CM 02/03/2021

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Dr. Seuss Enterprises reported on Tuesday it will no longer publish six books by noted American children’s author Theodor Seuss Geisel, known around the world by his penname of Dr. Seuss. The company said the reason is that the books “portray people in ways that are hurtful and wrong.”
The announcement fell on Geisel’s birthday, which is also Read Across America Day. 
The six books are And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street, If I Ran the Zoo, McElligot’s Pool, On Beyond Zebra!, Scrambled Eggs Super!, and The Cat’s Quizzer. 
The works of Dr. Seuss are loved around the world and some of them, such as The Cat in the Hat and Green Eggs and Ham, are seen by many as some of the finest books for children produced in American literature. 
CNN reported that the reason for these books being taken out of circulation, but not others, are the “racist images” in them. The media report informed viewers that these works also sell far less than Dr. Seuss’s better known books, which will be kept in print. 
The criticism leveled against the books is that both illustrations and text reveal cultural points of view which are no longer accepted.For example, in If I Ran the Zoo three Asian characters are carrying a white male on their heads and the text describes their homelands as “countries no one can spell.” 
Geisel was described by Children’s literature Prof. Philip Nel as “America’s first anti-Fascist children’s writer,” the Atlantic reported in 2017. Yet it seems he had a habit of depicting Japanese characters in biased ways which were commonplace during WW2 and, while a student in college, would depict Jewish characters in ways which would not be accepted today.

CNN anchorman Jake Tapper tweeted an image from a work by Seuss in which characters with, and without, stars seem to agree that having a star or not is not important for friendship.

To post Holocaust eyes, the message would seem to be related to how Jews (marked with a Star of David by the Nazis) and non-Jews should be able to get along well together. Followers of the CNN reporter complained against the effort to allegedly “cancel Seuss.” It should be noted that the works described here were political and adult-oriented cartoons and were not meant for children as the image shared by Tapper.  
Of German-American heritage himself, Seuss was radically opposed to Hitler and Mussolini, and supported the US entering the war against Nazi Germany, Imperial Japan, and Fascist Italy in his political cartoons. In a 1942 political cartoon he depicted Japanese-Americans as an alleged “fifth column” which could hurt American society. He was not against changing his books and indeed went back to one of the books on the list, And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street in the 1980’s to remove a reference about “yellow-faced Chinaman who eats with sticks.”
In many of his works for children Seuss poked fun of racism and chauvinism and suggested most human battles are foolish and should be avoided. This can be seen in his The Butter Battle Book, where a war is waged over the proper way to butter toast, or in Horton Hears a Who!, a book which might be understood as standing in support of scientific curiosity and protecting people from other cultures. 
Usually, sitting American presidents mention Seuss in their Read Across America Day message to the nation. This year the holiday is focused on diversity, and US President Joe Biden did not mention Seuss, ABC reported. 


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The host of Coffee Mouth Scare Crow Show and CEO of 452 Impact, Inc. Here is food for thought. Romans 6:23 "For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord." John 3:16 "For God so love ed the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him shall be saved."

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