The Finch Formerly Known As Gold

24 September 2003

O brave new Rio Grande Valley

The South Texas Independent School District has decided not to drop Robert A. Heinlein's Stranger in a Strange Land or Aldous Huxley's Brave New World from the tenth-grade Advanced Placement curriculum at the district's Science Academy.

A handful of parents had objected strenuously to the books; the district has responded by requiring principals to offer alternatives upon parental request.

I liked this statement by Beverley Becker, associate director of the American Library Association's Office for Intellectual Freedom, sponsor of Banned Books Week:

It is not only the right of parents, but their responsibility to be involved in what their kids are reading. But there's a line that they cross when they ask that in addition to their kid, that nobody else have access to that book.

Amen to that.

Posted at 8:00 AM to Almost Yogurt


if we could force the parents to read those two books they might see thmselves and their foolishness in a new light.

both books are brilliant!

Posted by: bruce at 1:59 PM on 24 September 2003

You can't force people to read things; it might interfere with their ability to provide customer service to MasterCard holders. :)

I'm fond of both books — I read the Huxley in high school, picked up on the Heinlein when I was in the Army — but it's no surprise to me that someone might find something objectionable in either of them. After all, people are still getting their BVDs knotted over Huckleberry Finn.

Posted by: CGHill at 8:06 PM on 24 September 2003

Whose to say that mainstream values are good for kids? They should be exposed to them for the sake of "acting" normal if the need arises. Either way, do parents have the right to raise their kids as either tree-hugging tarzan wannabes or bible worshipping drones...?

I guess so (sigh)

is common sense genetic?

Posted by: bruce at 11:25 PM on 24 September 2003

Can't be. My kids have a hell of a lot more of it than I do.

Posted by: CGHill at 7:27 AM on 25 September 2003

I read Stranger in a Strange Land when I was a teenager (maybe even before, I'm not Bob Graham so I didn't write it down) and I turned out okay.

Aside from being a jingoistic, pro-Ten Commandments right-wing loonie.

Come to think of it, that book may have had a lot to do with how I turned out after all.

(If that doesn't get the lefties shrieking to have the book banned, I'll eat my tinfoil hat.)

Posted by: McGehee at 1:06 PM on 25 September 2003

Start eating. Need some BBQ sauce?

Posted by: Goof Beyou at 12:56 PM on 28 September 2003