By Del Duduit
After a lengthy internal battle about whether to address this issue in my blog, I decided “Why not?”
My posts, for the most part, are meant to be encouraging and inspirational. Once in a while, I toss in my political opinion — which is just that — my opinion.
But I would hope someone would come to my defense if my work was labeled offensive and divisive after decades of being on the market.
To be honest, I have received many nasty messages, emails, and comments from people who did not agree with my opinion, from people who claim to be tolerant but are far from that description. I have always said that everyone has a right to be wrong.
When I wrote commentary pieces for The Western Journal in 2020, I received plenty of hate-filled messages. They attacked me personally, and many of them contained threats.
Some of my opinion columns in newspapers and websites have drawn strong criticism from readers. Most of the time, the critics use personal insults or name-calling in lieu of making an intelligent argument as to why they disagreed with me so that we could actually have a constructive debate. But the positive notes have outweighed the negatives by a large margin.
Once I received a profanity-laced private message tirade from a local person running for political office. I took a screenshot and still have that lovely rant, which is unfit for kids to read.
But last week was the final straw.
Certain people have concluded that Dr. Seuss’s books are now racist. This came a few days after some genius said Mr. Potato Head needs to be gender-neutral.
And add Looney Tunes classic Pepe’ Le Pew, the love-struck cartoon skunk, to the list.
The cancel culture is trying to discredit things I grew up with and loved as a child.
Six books written by Dr. Seuss have been pulled by the publisher because someone complained that they were offensive.
The books If I Ran the Zoo, The Cat’s Quizzer, Scrambled Eggs and Super!, And to Think That I Saw It On Mulberry Street, McElligot’s Pool, and On Beyond Zebra! have all fallen prey to the cancel culture movement. They claim it uses stereotypes and uses offensive language.
If something offends the other side, their only way to deal with it is to shut it down.
No debate. No education. No difference of opinion. No tolerance.
Theodor Seuss Geisel lived from 1904 to 1991. He was an American children’s author, political cartoonist, illustrator, poet, animator, and filmmaker. He wrote more than 60 books as Dr. Seuss and sold more than 600 million copies.
But now – all of a sudden – some of his books are deemed racist and insensitive.
If I see something on social media that I find offensive, I just keep scrolling. If I see a book I think is offensive (and there are many), I simply don’t buy it.
The other night, Angie and I were in a restaurant having a nice dinner. A family walked in, and the man with them, I assume the husband and father, was wearing a sweatshirt that read “White Men Can’t Jump” – the title of a 1992 movie. He was African American.
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I did nothing. I did not throw a tantrum or call the manager to have the person removed. I did not boycott the restaurant. I acted like an adult and enjoyed my date.
Could I have taken the title to be offensive? Should I have been offended? How would he have reacted if I had a derogatory slogan posted on my shirt about his race?
The squeaky wheel gets the oil, I guess. But I am not like that.
This nation needs to grow up and get a backbone and stop being offended by the past. I feel we have raised a generation of wimps. Over the past few weeks, I believe the country has gone on a downward slope which is quickly picking up steam.
The discretion of a man deferrth his anger, and it is his glory to pass over a transgression. (Proverbs 19: 11)
That scripture suggests that you should get over it. Move on. I agree.
But it seems as if many of this generation and its leaders are on a mission. Erase history and label everything they do not agree with as “offensive” and “racist.”
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Mr. Potato Head, Pepe’ Le Pew, and Dr. Seuss were impacted last week. I hope you see the trend. These are just a test run for the big prize.
This movement to erase history and cancel everything America grew up with is, in my opinion, 100 percent rebellion.
It’s coming. What’s next you ask? The Holy Bible will be a target soon. Mark my words.
In 1962, the United States Supreme Court ruled that school-mandated prayers in public schools are unconstitutional. The church did nothing.
In 1973, the same court ruled in favor of a pregnant woman’s right to choose to have an abortion. The church did nothing.
What will the church do when the cancel culture targets the word of God? What will you do? Will you defend it or let the other side banish the book?
If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you. (John 15: 18)
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Del Duduit is an award-winning writer and author who lives in Lucasville, Ohio with his wife, Angie. They attend Rubyville Community Church. Follow his blog at delduduit.com/blog and his Twitter @delduduit. He is represented by Cyle Young of C.Y.L.E. Agency.