Dr. Seuss has become the latest victim of cancel culture after a Virginia school district told teachers to ditch the books.
The Loudoun County Public Schools district removed the books from reading lists for Read Across America Day which is held on Tuesday, March 2. The district claimed the books have “radical undertones” that are not acceptable in 2021.
“Realizing that many schools continue to celebrate Read Across America Day in partial recognition of Dr. Seuss’s birthday, it is important for us to be cognizant of research that may challenge our practice in this regard,” Loudoun County Public Schools said in an announcement, as The Daily Wire reported.
“As we become more culturally responsive and racially conscious, all building leaders should know that in recent years there has been research revealing radical undertones in the books written and the illustrations drawn by Dr. Seuss,” the school district also said.
In its “guidance” for educators, the district cited research that found the author’s work filled with “orientalism, anti-Blackness and White supremacy,” The Daily Wire also noted, quoting the announcement the district sent out.
The Loudoun County Public Schools district put out a message claiming that Dr. Seuss’s books “have not been banned”—but highlighted the “strong racial undertones” revealed in books written and illustrated by Dr. Seuss.
“We continue to encourage our young readers to read all types of books that are inclusive, diverse, and reflective of our student community, not simply celebrate Dr. Seuss … Dr. Seuss and his books are no longer the emphasis of Read Across America Day in Loudoun County Public Schools.”
National Read Across America Day is celebrated every year on the March 2 birthday of Dr. Seuss—Theodor Seuss “Ted” Geisel. His children’s books—more than 60—have sold in excess of 600 million copies.
For decades, Dr. Seuss books have been extolled for their inclusion of diverse characters and themes of acceptance.
His classics include “If I Ran the Zoo” (1950), “Horton Hears a Who!” (1955), “If I Ran the Circus” (1956), “The Cat in the Hat” (1957), “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” (1957), and “Green Eggs and Ham” (1960). Those stories were the basis of numerous television specials, TV shows, live feature films, and more.