It is so hard to be angry with your state government, especially when you realize that they are simply trying really, really hard to be the craziest, most irresponsible government in the United States. In actuality, one almost feels a certain kind of admiration that The Grand Canyon State is currently winning this contest. With Chris Christie in New Jersey, Scott Walker in Wisconsin, John Kasich in Ohio, and Governor Voldemort in Florida it has been some stiff competition, but Jan Brewer and the other Tea Partiers of 2010 fame keeping chugging along the deranged locomotive that could.
As if believing ‘birther’ conspiracies, demonizing Hispanics, and allowing sociopaths to purchase guns for political assassinations wasn’t enough Arizona has figured out a way to truly win the ‘I’m Totally Bat-Shit Crazy Award.’ Marching to the beat of ‘Keep Big Government Out of Our Lives,’ Arizona has gone and used the government to ban an astonishing list of books from its public schools.
Included in these banned books are such titles as-
- ‘Critical Race Theory’ by Richard Delgado
- ’500 Years of Chicano History in Pictures’ edited by Elizabeth Martinez
- ‘Message to AZTLAN’ by Rodolfo Corky Gonzales
- ‘Chicano! The History of the Mexican Civil Rights Movement’ by Arturo Rosales
- ‘Occupied America: A History of Chicanos’ by Rodolfo Acuna
- ‘Pedagogy of the Oppressed’ by Paulo Freire
- ‘Rethinking Columbus: The Next 500 Years’ by Bill Bigelow
Now the justification for this book banning is Arizona HB 2281, a bill that bans the teaching of any material that-
- Promote the overthrow of the United States government.
- Promote resentment toward a race or class of people.
- Are designed primarily for pupils of a particular ethnic group.
- Advocate ethnic solidarity instead of the treatment of pupils as individuals
At this point tea drinking, deranged lunatics (known in the common American vernacular as Republicans) would most likely rush to the defense of this bill, stating that focusing on Hispanics excludes other students of differing ethnic backgrounds.
But this is odd considering some of the other books banned by the state government of Arizona, namely “The Tempest” by William Shakespeare.
Yes, we all know that famous Elizabethan word-smith was notorious for championing the cause of Hispanics at the expense of other ethnic groups.
Only in Arizona folks, would William Shakespeare be considered a Hispanic writer.
Fortunately a group has been created to stop this insanity. Librotraficante, Spanish for ‘Book Trafficker’ (don’t worry if you already knew that, I’m sure Arizona is working to ensure your children won’t), has been ‘smuggling’ the books into the state, and holding book fairs for the people of Tuscon and other Arizona cities. You can visit their website and show your support by going to http://librotraficante.com/
I can’t help but think that the United States needs to embark on some serious soul-searching. When roughly half the population screams at the idea of affordable health care because it constitutes ‘Big Brother,’ but then openly supports governments that tell us what we should read, and as a result, how we should think it makes me sigh and say, “Oh brave new world, with such people in it.”
Kind of catchy sentiment, if I do say so myself. Thankfully, if Arizona has its way, pretty soon I’ll be able to pass that off as a Wes Bishop original, with no one in the great state of Arizona knowing the difference.