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    Virginia School System Suspends ‘To Kill a Mockingbird,’ ‘Huckleberry Finn’ Over Racial Slurs

    Virginia School System Suspends ‘To Kill a Mockingbird,’ ‘Huckleberry Finn’ Over Racial Slurs


    The Accomack County Public Schools in Virginia has suspended the classics To Kill A Mockingbird and Adventures of Huckleberry Finn over racial slurs after a parent filed a complaint:

    “I keep hearing, ‘This is a classic, This is a classic,’ … I understand this is a literature classic. But at some point, I feel that children will not — or do not — truly get the classic part — the literature part, which I’m not disputing,” she said at a Nov. 15 school board meeting. “This is great literature. But there (are so many) racial slurs in there and offensive wording that you can’t get past that.”

    The parent said her son, who was reading “Huckleberry Finn” for a high school assignment, couldn’t get past a certain page in that story on which the N-word appeared seven times.

    A racial slur appears 219 times in “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” and 48 times in “To Kill a Mockingbird.”

    “So what are we teaching our children? We’re validating that these words are acceptable, and they are not acceptable by (any) means,” the parent said, also noting psychological effects language has on children. “There is other literature they can use.”

    As an English major, I had to read these books too many times. (Yes, I admit, I hate them both. Give me British Renaissance!) But if I recall correctly, the books have racism, but the books also teach that racism is wrong. Oh, look! I am correct:

    By the end of the novel, Huck and the reader have come to understand that Jim is not someone’s property and an inferior man, but an equal.

    The mother wants to know what schools are teaching the children. HISTORY. I believe Mark Twain wrote this book in an uncomfortable way so the reader can experience life as a black person during that time. Twain did not have racist views. In fact, he believed in full equality for all.

    Sorry, but in order to understand the horrific nature of slavery and the horrible behavior people exhibited towards blacks, you have to go back in time and learn about it. You have to feel it. You have to experience it. As uncomfortable as it is, you have to do this.

    Through these characters, kids today can learn that racism is wrong and that people of all colors have the same rights.

    But no. Outrage. RACISM EVERYWHERE.


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    JackRussellTerrierist | December 2, 2016 at 12:35 pm

    Now THIS story is scary. It feels like a slippery slope to book-burners. Mao. Stalin. Hitler.

    clintack | December 2, 2016 at 1:50 pm

    Not really censorship — they aren’t preventing anyone from reading the books, just choosing a different curriculum.

    But, yeah. Ridiculous. Two classic books — both anti-racism in a time when that was actually controversial.

    Valerie | December 2, 2016 at 4:29 pm

    Silly bitch never read the book to the end.

    DaveGinOly | December 2, 2016 at 8:24 pm

    The darkness helps us appreciate the light.

    Cleetus | December 3, 2016 at 9:09 am

    Soon these schools will ban Animal Farm because it describes today’s political environment too accurately.

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