Southern California Schools Ban Dictionary

Jan 26, 2010 • Books, Culture, Freedom, News, OMGWTFBBQ

I wish this was a joke or a statement about how the three people who hit on me at the coffee shop this morning seemed to only use monosyllabic words and so liberally sprinkled the word “like” in statements that nothing they said made too much sense.

It’s not. Some schools have in fact banned the dictionary.

Why? A parent complained the definition of “oral sex” in Merriam Webster’s 10th edition, common in fourth and fifth grade classrooms (populated by nine and 10-year-olds), is too graphic.

It describes oral sex as “the oral stimulation of the genitals.”

The Press-Enterprise reported on the incident:

“It’s just not age appropriate,” said [district spokeswoman Betti] Cadmus, adding that this is the first time a book has been removed from classrooms throughout the [Manifee] district.

“It’s hard to sit and read the dictionary, but we’ll be looking to find other things of a graphic nature,” Cadmus said. She explained that other dictionary entries defining human anatomy would probably not be cause for alarm.


Information from The Guardian and Press-Enterprise.

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  • Robert

    Apparently we can’t even allow children the most sterile of access to sexual information: we’re somehow trying to create an artificial world where sex doesn’t exist at all.

    Not too long ago, people lived on farms and raised livestock. When you do that, you grow up with sex all around you, and somehow you manage to cope with the “not age appropriate” content. How kids survived in a world which isn’t bubble-wrapped and sanitized for children’s protection must be a mystery to Spokeswoman Cadmus.

    (And quite frankly, I’d rather have kids bump into the word “oral sex” in a dictionary than type it into Google.)

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  • alex green

    That is sick. We (me) are being sexualized at about age 5. Why the hell wouldn’t you want your kid to know the truth behind the cute little stories their friends are telling?