Dr. Seuss books numbering six
the publisher decided to nix
the pictures he drew
the rhymes that he spew
are no longer okay
with the culture today

I assume you all know what happened with Dr. Seuss this week.

I completely understand that we have to learn from the past. We have to look at the stereotypes and misinformation that has spread in our society, and we have to move forward. We are a different place now, and the things that are published should reflect this.

So, in keeping with this…I think we should no longer publish the following:

  1. Product that refers to women as bitches, whores (ho’s) or c****s- because we have come too far as a society to allow women to be referred to in such a degrading manner and have names that belay a certain type of individual.
  2. Product that shows the pretty girl/woman as being mean and backstabbing because we have come too far as a society to stereotype attractiveness with meanness, or “bitchiness”
  3. Product that shows the pretty girl/woman being happy with no problems, because we have come too far as a society to think that attractiveness equates with an easy, happy life
  4. Product that shows the fat girl/woman as the best friend sidekick because we have come too far to think that people who may be overweight do not deserve to be in the spotlight
  5. Product that shows the quirky girl/woman as the one who is always part of a love triangle because the hot guy never sees their true worth because we have come too far as a society to let someone’s uniqueness be seen as odd or off putting romantically
  6. Product that shows girls/women as martyrs who sacrifice everything for their partner/child, because we have come too far as a society to let someone who is a caretaker be seen as “less than”
  7. Product that pits the stay at home Mom vs. the working Mom because we’ve come too far as a society to think that there is one way to parent and that the other way is wrong
  8. Product that labels girls/women as sluts because we have come too far as a society to allow women who enjoy sex to be labeled as something derogatory (we know Taylor Swift had something to say about this topic this week…)
  9. Product that labels Mothers as helicopter, free range, lawn mower or tiger, because as a society we have come to far to think that parenting is easy and that anyone has a clue as to how to parent
  10. Product that shows that women/girls who are PMSing are nasty, moody and crave chocolate because as a society we have come too far to allow a natural, normal biological thing as something to be made fun of
  11. Product that shows women who are peri, post or just plain menopausal as being not quite a woman anymore, because we have come too far as a society to let women going through a biological event to be considered no longer worthy of attention
  12. Product that shows younger women marrying older men as being golddiggers, because we have come too far as a society to question what love looks like
  13. Product that shows women/girls who are intelligent to be seen as undesirable as romantic partners or as anything else because as a society we have come too far to think those who are smart are not funny, sexy, caring or other qualities normally seen as desirable, and that no man wants to be with a woman who is smarter than them

So…

Can we get on this?

And while we are at it…can we please ban not publish “WAP”?

But don’t worry- Another groundbreaking thing happened this week. Amazon changed their logo. You no longer have to look at it and see Hitler’s mustache. I’m glad they finally got around to adapting it. We’ve come too far as a society to need to look at Hitler’s mustache every time we go Prime…

Thank you to everyone who participated in the discussion! Some great commentary came in after I recorded the podcast but know that all comments are greatly appreciated!

129 thoughts on “Anything Can Happen Friday: Stop Publishing

  1. Great post…I agree.

    I was reading that some high schools have also banned the teaching of Shakespeare, and Leicester University has banned the works of Chaucer…🤗

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I think society has had too much time on their hands to think of more and more things to be offended by. Maybe we should all take time individually to find ways to make the world a better place. Instead of telling everyone else what is wrong.

    Liked by 5 people

  3. I need meds of some kind to wrap my head around all this craven, PC lunacy. Like you said, Suess is out, but we can still “enjoy” hours of the most vile music videos known to man..I mean known to man and woman.. I mean known to humans..no, I mean known to earthlings.

    Liked by 4 people

      1. At the end of the day we all have the right to choose what we watch, eat, read or buy..unless someone takes away choices. First they came for the statues, then the rice and the syrup and movies on Amazon..now it’s the children’s books.. This is the way cancer works.

        Liked by 3 people

      2. A great point was made on Bleuwater the other day..I’ve really thought about it a lot. How exactly do we “stand up” to this? Write an e-mail?

        Liked by 2 people

      3. Well, as The books are now number 1 on Amazon and are selling out….we’ve made random house a lot of money. So maybe this was a marketing stunt to boost sales but used social media to fuel it. Because money is money

        Liked by 2 people

      4. They announced it on Read Across America day which is Seuss birthday and traditionally the face of the day. By daughters very progressive elementary school principal dressed as the cat in the hat every year. It’s totally a stunt. Book sales are down. People need to keep jobs. What’s everyone talking about this week?

        Liked by 1 person

  4. I read this 30 minutes ago and had to step away to think because there just isn’t enough time or space in this format to really honestly discuss. I believe you’re pointing to the fact that there are multiple ways that populations in our society encounter marginalization and discrimination. Your example focuses on sexism as a comparison to racism, but there’s a lot to unpack within it. I can understand your point, and also understand the points made in comments so far as most seem to ask “when and were will this form of censorship end” and that I have no answer for. The topic, and the way it is presented here in many ways encompasses ideals way beyond the decision to stop publishing a number of books. That’s not a bad thing, because those discussions need to happen. It’s just difficult to focus on this one discussion point, at least for me.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I completely get that things have changed in society and what was once considered acceptable is no longer. I understand the theory. I get that people were offended by the stereotypes. But aren’t we all? Anyone who has ever been stereotyped feels it. In my blog yesterday about are endings happy, someone commented that things have just been great for them this past year but they guess they understand why the year might be a loss to me. It was completely passive aggressive as to me being a New Yorker and I get what I deserve. That’s wrong to, to label me as city folk as my issues don’t matter to me. There’s a point where we have to look at what will truly bring us forward. Will this bring us together or further divide us? Can’t we stop labeling and judging and just treat each other fairly and well? Do we need to erase everything for people to feel better? And then the cynic in me thinks it’s a publicity stunt that they knew would get traction if social media. Look at the sales….

      Liked by 3 people

      1. Yes, the great majority of the population of the world has been, or continues to be marginalized or stereotyped in numerous ways and yes, we all want to be acknowledged because of it so emotions become a part of that process. Every hurt, every feeling needs to be seen and heard so perhaps yes, we do need to erase the past before everyone can move on and reach the point of recognizing the value in every human. Personally, as a white woman I have to acknowledge my level of privilege but then also stop and acknowledge all the varied and nuanced levels of discrimination around me. Not even just acknowledge, but really listen to, and be willing to end what is causing that pain.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I would simply challenge everyone to ask: is it not working, or is it not working in the way we as an INDIVIDUAL believes it should work? I was taught to approach social issues from this standpoint and always ask myself to consider the who, what and why receives benefits from social change… and why I may personally not agree. Now I am off to work.

        Liked by 1 person

    2. Then….there’s the thing that if you are against the non publishing, you’re a racist or a xenophobe. I don’t understand how we can neatly categorize this

      Liked by 1 person

  5. If the Dr. Suess foundation decided to not publish those books then it is their business. My husband was watching an old Little Rascals video and he commented on how racist it was, but then said it was a long time ago. I tried to explain that since that video is still available there are still people who watch it and don’t consider it bad. As women there are alot of things like those you mentioned that put segments of our population in a bad light to be sure, but are we going to get rid of them or rise above them. I know you brought all of them up to prove a point that we can’t get rid of everything that offends us, but do you have ideas on how to fix it? We have a long way to go to fix societal ills, but we have come a long way. Just because something was okay 10,20, 50 or 100 years ago doesn’t make it right now. To me ignorance is refusing to learn from past mistakes and improving our views.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Anyone can stop publishing anything. I don’t interfere with someone’s business. But if libraries take books out, and if eBay will not allow them to be resold, is that censorship? Are books art? If they’re art, are they under that umbrella? Since I watched One Night in Miami I’ve been interested in Sam cook music. I was just listening to Twisting the night away. In it he uses the word gay as in the definition of happy. Should that song be not published because we no longer use that word that way? Someone said some schools are banning Chaucer and Shakespeare. Does this make us better people, a better society, better neighbors? Let’s start by being nice to one another and not judging. People that have a problem with banning these books are being labeled racists and xenophobic. Is it right to label someone that because they don’t want to see books banned? Or because they think the overall message behind Dr. Seuss is good? In 2016 President Obama said that Seuss “used his talent to instill in his most impressionable readers universal values we all hold dear.” Was he wrong?

      Liked by 2 people

      1. No, he was not wrong. The 6 books in question are amoung his earliest. He grew and changed his opinions, even went to Japan and apologized about the stereotypes that he found to be negative. If a private company eBay doesn’t want them sold on their platform that is their business. I do not believe in censorship, but no one told the Foundation to do what they chose to do. I am trying to look at what we learn from the past to grow and while I truly believe some people never will I am willing to try to change people’s minds. I have a neighbor who is a Trump supporter and he can support anyone he likes, unfortunately his flags on his property are full of obscenities and there are children on the street and a pre-school, but it is on his house and his right to fly the flags. Am I offended by the language, yes, but it is his right. I hold my right to be offended as much as his to offend, just wish that people could accept that people have the right to disagree.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. We don’t anymore. Which is the problem. Even though math isn’t supposed to have”right” answers, we are continually being confronted with right and wrong with no grey. Eventually people will snap

        Liked by 2 people

      3. And think of it like this. People are trying to ban “The Cat in the Hat” because the cat is reminiscent of minstrel shows. I know I have never once in my life thought of that when I read the book. How much do we read into everything?

        Liked by 2 people

      4. 😉 I like the majority of his messages. I think on the whole he spouts that we are all equal no matter what we look like, that even small people matter, that there is goodness. Is this throwing out the baby with the bath water? We learn from the past not by erasing it. Use these things as tools. If I had a five year old I’d probably rather have them read dr Seuss than listen to WAP.

        Liked by 3 people

      5. My favorite book from when I was a kid is Yertle the Turtle. I still have my copy. Only book I saved from childhood. The first book my daughter read by herself was Green Eggs and Ham. The quote I put in her elementary school yearbook ad was Dr. Seuss. These moments matter to me.

        Liked by 1 person

      1. I never liked The little Rascals. I also didn’t like The three Stooges. But not for any reason other than they didn’t resonate with me

        Like

      2. Yeah every kid in the gang was equally ignorant, I’m not saying there aren’t negative connotations in the shorts, I’m just saying from a kids perspective when I watched those shorts growing up, I never got the impression that the black kids were treated any differently.

        Liked by 2 people

      3. To be fair…I think a lot of things have mean characters. I loved Seinfeld, but then looking at the show, they were horrible people. And maybe ignorant was more the word. I’ve always had a hard time with people being made fun of because of my mother, and being an introvert. I had to develop a really thick skin early on and I guess I was always overly sensitive to that

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Yeah, even worse than Seinfeld are the miscreants on Its always sunny in Philadelphia. I still find the Seinfeld show hilarious despite myself having been bullied by both my dad and brother, it had good writing to sustain it’s selfish & mean character’s. The genius behind that show was Larry David, because I don’t find Jerry Seinfeld’s stand-up particularly funny.

        Liked by 1 person

      5. No, the idiots of today that want to censor everything wouldn’t let that fly…Maybe if it was on HBO Max, it would do better or some new streaming service that be exclusive to shows like that, idk. I mean there was a recast live version of two cutting edge episodes of All in family, another show that wouldn’t fly today..but they surprisingly did well. So ya just never know.

        Liked by 1 person

      6. People didn’t know better. Also, it’s a survival instinct…pick on someone weaker to bring yourself up. The problem is we are still doing it, though in different ways. Human nature hasn’t changed. Things getting better requires every single one of us to be more cognizant if how we treat others, no matter who they are

        Liked by 1 person

  6. This entire thing makes me think of a Kurt Vonnegut story called Harrison Bergeron. In the story, everyone is “equal”. No one can be smarter, prettier, etc. Is this where we’re heading? I agree that stereotypes are wrong and offensive, but I think as long as the human race exists, there will be stereotypes. All we can do as an individual is try to rise above the stereotypes. Just my accent stereotypes me as an ignorant hillbilly, and people tend to overlook the college graduate, well read woman I am. I generally have a good laugh at these people’s expense. Also, being the bitch I am, people need to grow some thicker skin and get over themselves! If this is rambling, I apologize. I’m drinking my first cup of coffee as I write this ☕

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Yesterday someone made a passive aggressive comment in my post about how they were fine and dandy during the pandemic but they guess they understand my point as a new yorker. You’re right. We will never stop this behavior. We just have to work better to be better. This is driving us further apart

      Liked by 1 person

      1. It is. Maybe I’m just too old, but I really don’t understand where this nonsense of “let’s be offended by everything” came from. Or maybe I just have thick skin, because very little offends me. I think reading something that is offensive could be an excellent teaching tool. Explain to your kids that times were different when this was written and is not acceptable today, and why it isn’t.

        Liked by 1 person

  7. I have another one to add if you don’t mind. If you are a southerner…you watch a movie…and there he is…the redneck on the block with a wife in curlers with a beer in her hand…you will never see a southerner who is a scientist…or even an IT Director like me. That’s my ban for the day!

    No I totally agree with you. This medieval mob mentality looking for someone or something to banish is out of hand. Life is offensive at times and they need to put their big boy and girls pants on and deal with it.

    I have read where these social watchdogs leaned on the company for them to do something. Like I said yesterday though…it’s not about Dr. Suess anymore…it’s about our freedom of choice and I don’t like that being taken away. We can decide what is wrong or right on our own thank you very much.

    Liked by 3 people

      1. Yes I would agree with that.

        The bottom line is I’m tired of this culture. I’m hoping against hope that one day it will vanish…taking away my choice for deciding on my own…is a big deal…as it is with everyone.

        Liked by 2 people

    1. Hey…when I did my podcast this morning I realized my response sounded terse when I was trying to appear clever. It’s my fault for trying to do things on my phone when I’m out of the house and not fully concentrating on the task at hand

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Great post. Thank you for turning your ideas on cancel culture a thoughtful discussion. I think we can learn from the past. I graduated from the University of Washington in Seattle. I read that they took down the statue of George Washington this week because he owned slaves. Why stop with the statue? Don’t they need to rename the university and their state while they are at it?

    Liked by 1 person

  9. It is nice that you feel comfortable with addressing this issue with bloggers. The other day at one of my jobs I was wondering if someone was being kind of rude to me. We got to talking and I discovered that she and I shared a lot of things in common: working in NYC, living in Korea, etc. and our current job. We were even about the same age. The big difference is that her dad had a high level job with the UN. I listened to her business background from NYU and was so impressed. Then I wondered why she has such boring jobs in Manhattan years ago while I struggled with the economy, as did she. I had creative jobs but really hustled to find them. I wondered was it because she was African American and then she told me about her dad being with the UN and as a child they travelled all over. The point is: we are all so unique. We never know until we speak with one another. I understood finally that we are both working at a challenging job and her attitude had more to do with being tired. I think we are all tired of second guessing things. Lets move on.

    Like

    1. Sometimes I be oblique and expect everyone to make the connections. My point was that we are more alike than different despite our differences. The biggest challenge for me was not having “connections” and really trying to outdo everyone else. Well, she had “connections” and chose to work for a car company but was like a manager of some sort…years later, we find ourselves working with a challenging population, both of us with little in common or so we think until we begin to discuss things. I wish people had more discussions one on one. That’s it. I made my point. Hope I did not hurt your feelings by “Lets move on” for everyone. The world is a big place.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Good post. We have a bunch of Dr. Seuss books stored away. I do remember having a feeling reading a couple of them that something wasn’t quite right–but what that something was I don’t remember.

    On point #11–I was watching “The Dig” on Netflix. It is based on real life events. The real life female was 5 years older than the real life male. In the movie the woman playing the female lead is 23 years younger than the man playing the male lead. Both of the real life people would have been over 50 when the real life events occurred. Why does Hollywood always have to make choices like this–why couldn’t the movie been interesting with a woman lead that was 50 +. As a 50+ woman, I am offended, lol.

    I should have never looked on wikipedia for more information about the real life events, then I wouldn’t have been annoyed.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I liked the story if the dig though. But you’re so right. We perpetuate stereotypes every day. Let’s look at all if them and work on it together

      Like

      1. I can agree with that. Years ago when I worked in the garment district, many of us had to look a certain way to get the jobs working with clothing and the buyers. One never felt thin enough, sexy enough….it was always a looks game changer. Times have certainly changed. Sometimes I feel overdressed at times!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I think “good looks” or sometimes even conformity sells as it does now with certain outfits and trying to fit in with the others. Looking at this woman at work, we both had no idea about the other until we started talking to one another. Her experiences were so similar to mine and yet Hollywood and the media and the popular public is telling it is not so. I am glad I reached out to her and she shared.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Totally apologize! Meant to write more but that’s what happens when I try to use my phone to answer comments when I’m out! Completely agree with Hollywood casting choices. And the need for everyone to be gorgeous and young and thin. I didn’t even know that about the real people from The Dig…just crazy.

        Like

      1. I’d like to make one further clarification. Not in response to your reply, but for the record. I don’t have anything against penises. I have one, after all. I just don’t think they make terrific logos.

        Liked by 2 people

  11. Your examples show how ludicrous this is becoming. Where does it end? Who decides what is acceptable and not acceptable to read or watch? I know who would like to be the judge. Yes, there are people who take their “free speech” too far. And, in those cases, there are consequences. In my opinion. We’re becoming a very “vanilla” society where there won’t be anything worthy of discussion if nothing is objectionable. Only when we discuss the objectionable is there any chance of growth or change. I’m recording Gone with the Wind and just might never delete it. I also have Tom Sawyer/Huckleberry Finn movies and plan to use all of these as points of discussion with my grandlittles in the context on the era they represent. Awesome discussion topic. 💙

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! We talked the other day about drafts, and what happens if we delete all the drafts….but that’s sort if what we’re doing now…we are deleting all the drafts we don’t like. I am against all sorts of tyranny that brings people down. I do not consider Green Eggs and Ham a symbol of tyranny

      Liked by 1 person

      1. When I was talking about the pickpocket thing the other day…that was a true story. I was almost pickpocketed and after I moved my body and my bag, after I went Heyyyy…my next thought was…be careful how you act because this could go viral….and I wouldn’t become the victim

        Liked by 1 person

      1. Ok well, in the best worst kiss story there is a 1 page panel of blue and Sara holding a painting and parting ways, then when you turn the page, Sara is opening the gift, those pages should be reversed. I’m glad you like it 🙂 I guess i was just looking for some publicity

        Liked by 1 person

      2. You will get publicity, but I’m still throwing it around in my head. You know half of the battle is spin and presentation…

        Like

      3. Well either way, glad you ❤it. Ya know i also did a blue turtle comic in regards to my mom’s cancer, that book is housed at the Brooklyn Art Library along with 5 other books of art I did.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Bittersweet story here….a year ago Friday I had plans to go to the Brooklyn Art Library to see a scrapbook that my blog friend Janet had in there. My friend M, who I was supposed to go with, wasn’t feeling well, so we rescheduled for the following week. Well, the following week the world shut down and I never got to see it

        Like

      5. I know. I’m just a tactile, in person kind of person. I hate everything on the computer, especially with pictures. I read old school magazines

        Liked by 1 person

      6. Me too, I prefer the feel of the paper, the binding…One of the books I made for the art library is a flip animation book, they asked if I wanted that digitized..i said it would defeat the purpose of the book. Hopefully, someone will get a chance to flip it sooner than later 😕

        Like

  12. As a retired educator and a grandmother, I am incensed by the banning of Dr. Seuss books. They have done so much good in encouraging children to read, providing pleasure, and promoting kind thinking. Cancel Culture wants to rid us of the past. I have a unique idea (not!)…let’s learn from the past. Honestly, I think this is a successful effort at distraction, “Hey, don’t look at all the bad things happening in our country, especially those by our government. Look over here. We have something that can really make you mad.”

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Hmmm. I think “we” have become scared of ourselves. Instead of looking within, and working on our own issues, we are banning anything and everything that someone deems offensive or inappropriate. The issue? Banning these works of art are not going to change the issues people have within. Not ever. Great post, LA.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. I doubt I have anything to add to what’s already been covered here. We’ll never run out of things to be offended by. I’m against censorship, though.

    Never noticed the Hitler mustache, but always thought the swooping arrow had a phallic look.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You know what I just heard…now I will tell you I haven’t verified this, so I might be talking out of turn…but apparently two episodes of 30Rock have been pulled from Netflix because if Tina Feys characterization of Asians. This is 21st century. Yet I don’t see an apology and she just hosted the Golden Globes. If this is true…where is the outrage?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I’m anti anything that stereotypes or shows people in a derogatory manner. But I mean all people. Equally treated. I’m going to look into this some more. My daughter just told me this at dinner tonight

        Liked by 1 person

  15. I am glad to find I’m not the only one who has ever looked at the Amazon logo and thought “penis”. ( I put it in quotes because that’s not the actual word that pops into my mind when I see it. Coincidentally, the same word pops up when I see pictures of Jeff Bezos.)

    I had to look up the Hitler thing as the world of apps is not my natural habitat. It does not remind me of Hitler. Even when I know it is supposed to look like Hitler, I struggle to see it. Unfortunately I see a penis and a cheese grater.

    Amazon really needs to change agencies.

    Apart from that, you raise a lot of important questions. Unfortunately, now that I know you have a New York accent I imagine you raising them in a raucous and abrasive way…

    Maybe we should ban all TV shows that have negative portrayals of New Yorkers.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. If we blocked all those with a New York accent….the world would probably be a better place….no more dropped R’s… but yeah…to here me get passionate over a subject is listening to my voice rise and the speed up of all the ideas blending together and my thoughts become shorthand as I jump from point A to point B to point J because my brain is spinning too fast and is run in just like this sentence

      Liked by 1 person

  16. I’ve looked up Mulberry Street since my copy is packed (I hope! Oh, I hope!). It says “a Chinese man holding sticks.” Seriously? The Sneetches is worse; I see a direct correlation between that and issues like gender reassignment lately… (Hopefully, neither I nor Dr. Seuss will get banned out of existence…). And Mr. Geisel was a fairly liberal man. 🤦‍♀️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I say we tackle 21st century people first. Tina fey took off four episodes of 30 Rock from Netflix because of racist imagery against blacks. Yet, there are many things she has clearly been anti Asian. Yet, she still hosted the Golden Globes. Is she forgiven for her 21sr century gaffes where she clearly should have known better? Racism isn’t going to get us. Hypocrisy will. We either forgive all who make an error in judgement and move on, or we forgive none. Let’s be equal about this

      Liked by 1 person

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