While reading online the other day, I discovered that Laura Ingalls Wilder was a racist. Must be true, for the American Library Association, in it's infinite wisdom, has decided to remove her name from a prestigious award for children's literature. They do not like the way Wilder wrote about African Americans and Native Americans. Seems her words don't conform to the politically correct standards of today.
Born in 1867, Wilder's books chronicle her life as a child in a pioneer family. The words and terms she used reflected the times. They are a part of our history.
I bought the entire set of 'Little House' books for my children. I read them all, marveling how those hardy pioneers lived and worked and loved and managed to survive under harsh circumstances. But I suppose by today's standards I should be condemned for exposing my young children to the evils of racism.
Finding this attitude of burning history on the alter of political correctness, I dove a little deeper into the subject.
I was not at all surprised to find the political correct among us throwing hissy fits over the Uncle Remus stories, published in 1881. Had they done their research, they would have found that the author held in high regard those black story tellers from whom he gathered the stories. The dialect he used when writing them had nothing to do with mocking that kind of speech and had everything to do with preserving the integrity of the stories.
Some of my fondest childhood memories are of my Dad reading to me from the big book of Uncle Remus Stories. The antics of Br'er Fox, Br'er Rabbit and Br'er Bear were a delight to a little girl and the lessons taught remain with me. But all that should be erased from our history, according to those who can find racism in a jelly sandwich.
Moving on to 'Little Black Sambo,' the PC people lose their minds. How dare any author write about a character named Little Black Sambo. Those who know best about these things, scream 'racism' at the top of their lungs. So much so that some publishers have changed the setting of the story to other countries where dark skinned people are not prevalent.
The PC police may have done better to leave this children's book alone, for in it, Little Black Sambo is the hero, outsmarting the bad tigers who stole the fine clothes Sambo's mother had made for him. He not only got his beautiful clothes back, he got the tigers to chase each other around and around so fast they turned into butter, which his mother used to make pancakes.
This was another children's book read to me long ago. Kids love the story, and through the telling learn that bullies are bad, even if they are tigers, the boy in the story is smarter than the bad guys and there are consequences for bad behavior.
The PC police can't stand to leave these stories alone because, as we all have been told ad nauseam, most everything today is racist, racist, racist.
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