Poem Circulating Online Laments Canceling of Dr. Seuss Books The Society March 6, 2021 Children's, Culture, Deconstructing Communism, Humor, Poetry 35 Comments The author of the above poem, circulating online, is unknown. From The Epoch Times (March 2, 2021) “Biden Omits Mention of Dr. Seuss From ‘Read Across America Day’ Amid Concerns of Racist Undertones”: President Joe Biden appears to have removed legendary children’s book author Dr. Seuss from “Read Across America Day,” which is observed on March 2, the birthday of author. In a proclamation Monday, Biden declared Tuesday “Read Across America Day,” but left out mention of the children’s author, as has been presidential tradition in recent years. Presidents Donald Trump and Barack Obama both recognized the author in their respective proclamations during their time in office. From Distractify (March 3, 2021): “Dr. Seuss Enterprises Is Ceasing Publication of ‘And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street’ and Five Other Books”: Beloved children’s book author Dr. Seuss has recently come under fire for the problematic racial undertones that can be found in many of his books. The controversy reached a peak when Virginia’s Loudon County announced that they were dropping Dr. Seuss as the main focus of Read Across America Day. NOTE TO READERS: If you enjoyed this poem or other content, please consider making a donation to the Society of Classical Poets. NOTE TO POETS: The Society considers this page, where your poetry resides, to be your residence as well, where you may invite family, friends, and others to visit. Feel free to treat this page as your home and remove anyone here who disrespects you. Simply send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Put “Remove Comment” in the subject line and list which comments you would like removed. The Society does not endorse any views expressed in individual poems or comments and reserves the right to remove any comments to maintain the decorum of this website and the integrity of the Society. Please see our Comments Policy here. CODEC News:Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pinterest (Opens in new window) 35 Responses Paul Freeman March 6, 2021 To be honest, this poem by an unknown author is fake news. The estate of Dr Seuss decided to cease publication of 6 Dr Seuss titles which they said depicted ‘people in ways that are hurtful or wrong’. The US President had nothing to do with this decision, and Dr Seuss has not been cancelled. On a personal note, I believe ‘The Cat in the Hat’ is the best book for teaching kids to read English. I just wish we’d had the book easily available in England when I was a kid. Reply Cathryn March 6, 2021 Agree 100% Wish I could write a poetic response to the fake news!!!! Reply The Society March 6, 2021 Dear Mr. Freeman, A note has been added to clarify the situation. That said, the poem seems to be from the perspective of a child and it could be easily conceived that a child would conflate the canceling of the books with some of the policies of the Biden administration. We certainly get the sense that if Biden held the copyrights he would do that. Perhaps most importantly, this is art, not news. There could be better poems written on this topic. -Evan Mantyk Reply Joseph S. Salemi March 6, 2021 Freeman, you can always be expected to apologize for the liberal-left. It DOESN’T MATTER who “cancelled” the Dr. Seuss books. The crucial issue (which you seem willing to ignore) is that we are now in the incipient stages of a totalitarian, censorship-driven cultural regime that is raging out of control. Are you in any way troubled about that? Will you speak out against it? Or will you just keeping gassing on about “fake news”? Those controlling the estate of the Dr. Seuss titles are gutless vermin, interested in pious virtue-signaling and the protection of their annual revenues, nothing else. They were willing to betray the heritage of the man whose books are keeping them affluent, just so they could continue to look in the mirror of their righteousness and congratulate themselves, and — purely coincidentally — keep the money flowing in. As for our Resident, the dementia-addled usurper Joe Biden, yes — he’s not responsible for the Dr. Seuss debacle. But five’ll get you ten that if he had heard of the controversy, he’d be on the side of the censors. Reply Rosalee Adams June 28, 2021 ******SOBS into a hankie uncontrollably***** the nastiness that was directed at Trump and now left’s panties all in a tight wad when directed at babbling Biden and his useless drug addicted offspring Mike Bryant March 6, 2021 “The US President had nothing to do with this decision…” I cant believe the resident gets a pass on this. When Trump was president everything was his fault. Remember the kids in cages? All Trump’s fault, even though Obama and Biden Admin built them and used them. Trump put a stop to it, and now Biden has all the kids in cages again. The same cages but now they are called “migrant facilities for children.” The Biden admin is absolutely responsible for the new culture they are bringing about. Reply Mike Bryant March 6, 2021 Paul Freeman, according to TVNZ, TV New Zealand, “The Cat in the Hat, one of Seuss’ most popular books, has received criticism, too, but will continue to be published for now.” Paul, I can barely believe that you would endorse this piece of racist propaganda. When this book is banned your name will come up on an internet search because of your endorsement. An apology might be in order. Maybe it will keep you out of the re-education camp. You already have one strike against you because you are associated with a conservative website. Reply Paul Freeman March 7, 2021 If you read my reply, I did not (and do not) endorse these books being banned. That is just an assumption you made. I merely pointed out that the current US President did not ‘kill’ Dr Seuss. Mike Bryant March 7, 2021 Look, Paul, if you DON’T endorse the books being banned, that means that YOU ACCEPT these obviously racist books. IF Seuss wrote ONE or two or SIX racist books… he IS a racist. YOU are trying to sell ‘The Cat in the Hat,’ a book written by a racist, therefore, YOU ARE A RACIST. Apologize NOW! IF you don’t I must assume that you are an unrepentant racist. My logic is impeccable. If you don’t agree… you must be cancelled. Many people have been cancelled for less. Wake up. benjamen grinberg March 6, 2021 For curiosity’s sake I would like to see the actual images. Reply Joe Tessitore March 6, 2021 Benjamin, You can look them up if you have access to the internet. Just search for the Dr. Seuss images and you’ll get any number of hits to explore. I remember them from my childhood. Reply Julian D. Woodruff March 6, 2021 Yes, Mr. Tessitore! That says something, doesn’t it? Texts and images both, in fact. I was never much of a reader as a kid, but I did memorize McEllicott’s Pool when I was 6–I couldn’t help it, I loved it so much. And I insist that experience helped when it came to memorizing Shakespeare and Coleridge, and Bach and Vivaldi later on. (Of course, everyone knows how memorization is a tool, soon to be an artifact, of white European cultural hegemony.) I imagine you share my view that this a glaring instance of the multi-fronted war on children, from conception to roughly 20–by which time many of them have been thoroughly indoctrinated. David Watt March 6, 2021 It is all too easy to label the written or spoken word as “fake news”. I wholeheartedly agree that Biden didn’t personally make the decision to cease publication of these six Dr. Seuss books. But I am sure that, if he was aware of the decision, he would agree. Also, one closing line of a poem does not make the whole piece “fake news”. That’s like spotting one cloud in a sunny sky and bemoaning a rainy day. Reply Joe Tessitore March 6, 2021 Mr. Woodruff, I do share your view that it is a multi-fronted war on children. I also share Dr. Salemi’s broader view that “we are in the incipient stages of a totalitarian, censorship-driven cultural regime that is raging out of control.” I further agree with Dr. Salemi that people of good will are obliged to confront it. I believe it is a blitzkrieg. Reply Norma March 7, 2021 I think that it has been a part of our inheritance to meet the narrow minded individual who thinks because he thinks it that it must be the truth. History can be changed but the truth the good and the beautiful is as much a part of our inheritance as any ugly untruth. Reply Wm Conelly March 7, 2021 I’m a librarian, where these conversations are common. This is a tempest in a teacup to me. The owners of content- The Seuss foundation- has the right to do whatever they want. The 6 books they have stopped selling simply don’t have the sales or reflect their values. This is neither cancelling or censorship, and an example where politics poisons valid dialog. Liberperlo of Los Angeles via The NYT Readers’ Responses Reply Joe Tessitore March 7, 2021 The point is that there are no more teapots, only the crack-pot sock-puppet in the White House. Go ask our brother and sister citizens on the Texas border about tempests and teapots. Reply Evan Mantyk March 7, 2021 Dear Mr. Conelly, The points made by NYT reader are full of premises that could be debated, but I will only point out perhaps the most obviously debatable point, which takes issue with the post title I created. If someone cancels something, even of their own, it can be called “canceling,” can it not? If we are in 1950s Soviet Union and someone voluntarily chooses to take down from their property any signs that may be viewed as subversive to the Communist Party that can also be considered canceling can it not? Regards, Evan Mantyk, Editor Reply Joseph S. Salemi March 7, 2021 Conelly and Freeman are both expressing, in slightly different ways, the new talking-point of the left in this debate over censorship. They have fallen back on the argument of “privacy” — that is, private parties have the right to censor and exclude anything that they choose, since they are not public entities that must abide by the First Amendment. This argument is contextually laughable and absurd, and I think both Freeman and Conelly know it. For the last century the left has done NOTHING but attack private choice in housing, renting, banking, gun ownership, club membership, school choice, hiring policies, and most recently the right of religious bodies to exclude on the basis of doctrinal belief. Catholic hospitals are being legally pressured to perform abortions. Businesses are being legally pressured to hire homosexuals and the transgendered, or to perform services for them that go against the owners’ beliefs. Men’s clubs can’t be just for men anymore. Where were Freeman and Conelly when these things violations of privacy happened? Behemoth concerns like Google or Twitter or any of the social-media outlets are “private”? Gimme a break! These monster corporations exert vast public influence, a lot more than any men’s club or little Catholic hospital. As for the Dr. Seuss estate, sure, they have the right to not publish their books. But do Amazon and Alibris and all the big book chains also have the right to prevent the sale of already existing copies, as they are doing now? And Conelly — if you are a librarian, you know damned well that libraries all across America have ben censoring themselves for the last thirty years on political, racial, and cultural grounds. American librarians have been the worst book-burners since Nazi Germany. If “these conversations are common” among you and your colleagues, I wonder what the hell was said in them. And if you are responding by way of the New York Times Reader Responses, I guess we know where you’re coming from. Reply Evan Mantyk March 7, 2021 Dear Readers, Here is, hopefully, a final note from me on this: It seems that the canceling of Dr. Seuss books has everything to do with Biden’s snub of Dr. Seuss on March 2 (see the news report above). So, although I thought the canceling here was more subtle and psychological, and the connection to Biden indirect, it appears I may have been too generous. It is indeed as the poet has suggested: Biden has canceled (“killed”) Dr. Seuss books for dubious ideological reasons. (Thank you to Christopher Flint for pushing me to look into this further.) Reply Norma Okun March 7, 2021 I think it is healthy to be able to comment on what are the most offensive things that can come from hypocrisy and ignorance. Many beautiful works have been obscured and labeled what they were not meant to be. So horribly wrong to cut scenes from Gone With The Wind. To please a group of “blinded goats”, who also probably made sure the Calendar of Sin by Evelyn Scott was never read. It is crazy and inhuman to have electrocuted people for what they wanted to never have happen again. Honestly all they needed to do to change what some saw as the the inhumanity to black people was to pay their wages. They are still keeping the minimum wage to 7 dollars something that should be the only way to honor them. Pay them for their work, everyone should be paid well for their work. I think it all goes back to a system of profit and nothing else matters to those who have the power but the business of being kind as Samuel Johnson stated is still to be a business as important as anything else people can do for each other in this world. All art is to show the injustice in order to love justice more, to show the ugly to appreciate the beauty in this world. Reply Mike Bryant March 7, 2021 Here is an interesting article from 2017: https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4936302/Michelle-Obama-mocked-reading-racist-Dr-Seuss-books.html Michelle and Barack Obama were huge supporters of Dr. Seuss. Melania Trump made a gift of Dr. Seuss books to school districts in all 50 states. One librarian rejected the gift. The article sums up the events well, and points out that the offended librarian had promoted Dr. Seuss while wearing the ‘Cat in the Hat’ hat only a month before rejecting the books! They have the photo of the smiling librarian, in the hat, holding up the book. A month after the photograph was taken, the same librarian rejected Trump’s gift because Seuss is a racist. Now that Trump has become a non-person, everything he endorsed must be carefully written out of history. Watch for any and all photos, videos, recordings and documents that prove how the Obamas or the Bidens held Dr. Seuss in high regard BEFORE the Trump connection. History is being rewritten, folks, and the news media is being insidiously used to rewrite history even as it occurs. You would think it was obvious. However this comments section, along with volumes of commentary on Twitter, newspapers, YouTube videos, etc. unfortunately proves that smart, but poorly informed, people the world over are buying the lies. God help us all! (I also thank Mr. Flint for making me look back a bit further.) Reply Mike Bryant March 7, 2021 There is a powerful article in the Guardian from 2016 called, China’s Memory Manipulators, which states, “The country’s rulers do not just suppress history, they recreate it to serve the present. They know that, in a communist state, change often starts when the past is challenged.” -Ian Johnson https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/jun/08/chinas-memory-manipulators Reply Paul Freeman March 7, 2021 ‘The National Education Association has said that Read Across America Day no longer is partnered with Dr. Seuss Enterprises.’ Which is why President Biden did not mention Dr Seuss on Read Across America Day, a two-president ‘tradition’. Reply Mike Bryant March 7, 2021 The National Education Association (NEA) is the largest labor union and the largest white-collar representative in the United States. Newsweek (notoriously left of center) Fact Check: Did Joe Biden Break a Dr. Seuss Tradition on Read Across America Day 2021? The Ruling: Mostly true. https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/fact-check-did-joe-biden-break-a-dr-seuss-tradition-on-read-across-america-day-2021/ar-BB1ea178 How odd that the resident of the USA is beholden to a labor union. I think the NEA is a huge part of our problem. These Marxists are teaching our children. Paul, do you believe that you have made Biden’s actions appear noble? Why are you intent on defending Biden? Reply Joseph S. Salemi March 7, 2021 And what exactly does that contribute to the discussion here about out-of-control censorship and cancel-culture in the United States? Or are you simply looking for a convenient way to avoid the whole question? How very British. Reply Joe Tessitore March 10, 2021 Paul keeps returning here – I wonder what attracts him? Paul Freeman March 14, 2021 Did you just cancel British people, Joe? Paul Freeman March 14, 2021 I return, Joe, because I prefer traditional style poetry to free verse. Of course you could always cancel me. Reply Joseph S. Salemi March 16, 2021 No one is “cancelling” you here, Mr. Freeman. We’re just giving you vigorous objections to your perpetual defense of anything that the liberal left does. And there are plenty of Brits at the SCP, so don’t claim the mantle of ethnic victimhood. Reply JessicaR March 19, 2021 Couldn’t the canceled books come with a warning label on the cellophane wrapper warning parents that they contain, for example, drawings that may be demeaning to Asians, and let people make up their own minds about whether to buy the book? Because I have Asian relatives, I would appreciate the warning before buying such a book for a child. At the same time, I really don’t like the censorship. A warning label seems like a good compromise. Reply Hayden Hardiman April 6, 2021 I love it and it is absolutely true!!! Reply Shaelee Martinson April 12, 2021 I agree with this random person i dont know hehe Reply :Donna Marie April 7, 2021 This is one of the most assinine poems ever written. And the biggest LIE is that Biden had anything to do with Read Across America. He most certainly didn’t, but his wife is an educator so is aware of the bull that’s been circulating about Seuss, though unfortunately believes the bull. I happened to do months of research on this and am able to refute ALL the accusations against him. Just haven’t finished the work to post it. And just so you know, in case you didn’t, THIS is what got Seuss removed from Read Across America: https://www.pragmaticmom.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/FINALNEAReportDr.SeusssRacismandRAA.pdf It is FILLED with false and fabricated accusations, ALL based on things taken out of context. It took them 2 years to finally do it, but they pulled him completely from their site. It’s tragic and ludicrous. Reply Hayden Hardiman April 12, 2021 Donna, I get what you are saying, But this poem is hilarious!!! Reply Leave a Reply to Mike Bryant Cancel ReplyYour email address will not be published.CommentName* Email* Website Notify me of follow-up comments by email. Notify me of new posts by email. Δ This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.