Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Everybody's up in arms

If you're not outraged, you're not paying attention...

Some uninformed fool in a Midwestern business department makes incendiary comments about a book that's ten-year tenure makes it practically canonical YA. I know the conflation of rape and porn makes this irresistible for the biblioblogger types, but if any book can hold up to the scrutiny, it's Speak. I'm much more concerned with censorship that's systematic (Common Sense Media), institutional (the Burlington, NJ library) and from within the educational establishment (Humble, Texas), particularly against authors without Laurie Halse Anderson's support and accolades.

I didn't watch Oprah yesterday, but I felt the blowback from the twittersphere:

I saw the trailer for Waiting for Superman last weekend and wretched involuntarily. I am disappointed Oprah would be manipulated by that dreck. Anyone who has seen illiterate relatives attempting to sign the paperwork for their child or grandchild to drop out on their sixteenth birthday can foresee the end result of charter schools, schools without standards like the "segregation academies" run out of people's living rooms a few decades ago. As long as our culture refuses to esteem or fund education, public schools with governmental accountability will be the only way to teach the masses.

What I'm outraged about: fewer than half of those polled by CNN oppose gay marriage. Yet the family and consumer science teacher at my school gets called in for suggesting that gay marriage doesn't affect those outside the relationship. I suppose the Nontraditional Families unit in her Family Dynamics course of studies should be limited to blended families, to allow the church-going, only-sex-within-marriage, who-cares-how-many-marriages to salve their consciences? Meanwhile, I have a student who lives with her two mothers. Evidently she (and her teacher) should allow another student to indict her home and family, because it isn't conventional and, as the protesting student kept insisting, violates her religion. So now I'm stuck babysitting that conscientious objector because, as well all know, any student with problems with the curriculum should be redirected TO THE LIBRARY.

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