Ban Overly Offensive Books, the right-minded group I founded several years ago, is backing a brave new proposal to keep dangerous literature away from impressionable young minds.
Nothing’s yet official, but Spokane educators soon may change the status from required to optional reading on such classics as Mark Twain’s “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” and Harper Lee’s “To Kill A Mockingbird.”
Though celebrated the world over as important and great, these books were found to be offensive by a few high school students and that’s plenty good enough for BOOBS.
Great literature has a way of stirring the soul and shaking a reader’s sensibilities like a dry martini.
Sometimes powerful writing causes people to ask questions and - God forbid - think.
That’s why we BOOBS vow never to rest until libraries everywhere are purged of all reading matter that could possibly upset someone.
An optional high school reading list is but a wino’s wobbly step toward this ultimate goal. But we BOOBS must take our victories wherever we can.
I just wish we could accept some of the glory for this enlightened proposal.
Unfortunately, most of our energy has been spent trying to get all the naughty Cosmopolitan magazines off the shelves at Rosauers supermarkets.
So the applause must go to well-meaning teachers.
It’s about time changes are made, said veteran Lewis and Clark High School literature instructor Gladys Kosty in a recent newspaper story.
“The classics are hard to read. And because reading levels seem to be going down, it’s hard for them to understand it.”
We’re awarding Kosty honorary BOOBS status for this keen insight.
She’s absolutely right. Reading levels are swirling down the toilet bowl, so why fight the flush?
During June graduation ceremonies, for example, 15 Ferris High valedictorians demonstrated their collective genius by taking turns reading a sing-songy Dr. Seuss book.
This is almost the kind of suitable optional reading matter we BOOBS approve of. Unfortunately, Dr. Seuss is one of those “dead white” authors Kosty says teenagers are bored with.
We must be careful to offer students safe and suitable, nonthreatening material as an option from nasty hard-to-understand literature.
Here are a couple of options we BOOBS came up with to give you the idea:
Dangerous “Mockingbird” excerpt: “… I wanted you to see what real courage is, instead of getting the idea that courage is a man with a gun in his hand. It’s when you know you’re licked before you begin but you begin anyway and you see it through no matter what.”
Safe BOOBS option: “Crest has been shown to be an effective decay-preventive dentifrice that can be of significant value when used as directed in a conscientiously applied program of oral hygiene and regular professional care.”
Dangerous “Huck Finn” excerpt: “‘Good lan’! is dat you, honey? Doan’ make no noise.’ It was Jim’s voice - nothing ever sounded so good before. I run along the bank a piece and got aboard, and Jim he grabbed me and hugged me, he was so glad to see me.”
Safe BOOBS option: “It’s a small world, after all. It’s a small world, after all. It’s a small world, after all. It’s a small, small woooorld.”
All you right-thinking Americans are invited to join BOOBS today. Call me at 459-5432 and tell me what book you would like burned and why.
Example: “Moby Dick.”
Reason: Vulgar title says it all.
With enough BOOBS we really can make the world a safer, smaller place!