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Benjamin R. Barber Headshot

Keeping America Scrotum-Free

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You may be mad as hell about the Surge, outraged by genocide in Dafur,
scandalized by the exploitation of Anna Nicole Smith's death, and deeply
anxious about global warming, but me, I'm a realist and can deal with
stuff like this. I mean this stuff is what America is all about. But I
do have limits. And now they've tested those limits, and I have to
admit, I'm finally pissed off.

The New York Times (I mean isn't it supposed to be a family newspaper?),
the New York Times ran an article on the front page of the Sunday
edition (which families sit on the parlor floor and read together) about
a kid's book featuring this.... well let me just say it, a book
featuring the word "scrotum."

And I'm every bit as mad about it as those librarians and teachers
around America who the Times reports are saying GET THIS "CHILDREN'S
BOOK" (YEAH, RIGHT, FOR SEX-CRAZED PSYCHOPATHS!) GET THIS FILTHY BOOK
WITH THIS FILTHY WORD IN IT OUT OF OUR LIBRARIES AND SCHOOLS! Amen. And
out of the New York Times too.

Apparently, you can hardly get through page one of this kiddie porn book
without running into a story about a rattlesnake biting a dog on... OK,
I'll say it, on its "scrotum." S-c-r-o-t-u-m: scrotum. We're supposed
to get upset about what's going on in Dafur and Bagdad and right here in
the USA they're feeding kids stories about a dog's scrotum!? The book is
called The Higher Power of Lucky, probably to throw us off the scent
(as it were). And some outfit called Newbery gave the book a medal to
boot, no doubt to get parents thinking it's OK to have their kids
reading about scrotums.. (scrota? scroti? Hey, I'm supposed to know the
plural of porn terms like scrotum?)

I wonder if the folks at Newbery ever bothered to look up the definition
of scrotum in Webster's? Well I did bother (some one has to care about
standards!), and here's what it says (warning: this is an R-rated
definition and if your kids are into blogs, don't let them read this):
according to Webster a scrotum is "a pouch of skin that contains the
testes and their coverings." Man, how filthy is that? And people are
complaining about Guantanamo? They think the pictures from al Grahib
Prison are dirty, but let this filth into our Middle School libraries?

I don't believe in censorship, and I can appreciate that prime time
television sporting shows like The L Word and Desperate Housewives
and that video games like Grand Theft Auto trafficking in murder and
mayhem (and some hidden sexual programming) are OK for the kids, (I mean
they got to learn about sex and violence sometime, don't they?) but when
you start talking about scrotums in children's "literature" (yeah,
right!), I draw the line. I mean can you imagine what a fourteen year
old who probably never heard the words vagina or penis (except maybe in
school, or on television, or at home and in the library) is going to
think when she reads the word scrotum and then looks it up in Webster's
only to find it means "a pouch of skin that contains the testes"? Not
just the testes, but "their coverings." Yuk! You might as well just drop
that young lady off at the nearest brothel and consign her to a life of
sin.

So let's go bloggers, let's keep America scrotum-free. I mean they are
worrying about illegal immigrants crossing our borders when scrotum is
right here in our midst? It's not global warming or al Qaeda or
shrinking civil liberties or genocide in Africa or young Americans dying
in the Middle East for no one is quite sure what that threatens our
security and undermines our liberty. It's testes in your face. That
pouch of skin covering our kids' pliant minds. Yeah, sure folks, we're a
tolerant nation, a GOOD nation. But a pouch of skin containing the
testes doesn't belong in a kid's book; nor in a family newspaper. Nor in
this blog (sorry about that). In fact, truth be told, I'm not even sure
what a scrotum is doing on a dog. Buster needs a scrotum? A tail isn't
enough?

We've got to draw the line somewhere: I say let's draw it right right
across that dog's ass: between his penis and his anus - no need to worry
kids with a pouch of testes (whatever those are) in between.