Updated: Apr 7
Theodore Seuss Geisel, otherwise known as Dr. Seuss, was an American author who was well known for his children’s books. His characters Cat in the Hat, Thing One, Thing Two and the Lorax are some that will never be forgotten by many generations. Dr. Seuss’ books had many valuable lessons. For example, Horton Hears a Who! taught us that no matter how others may perceive us, our voices are never too small to be heard. While I will forever be grateful for the stories that shaped my childhood, it is time to bring to light the stories that don’t have such wholesome content.
On March 2, Dr. Seuss Enterprises announced that they would be pulling six books from the bookshelves. The books that were recalled were And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street, If I Ran the Zoo, McElligot’s Pool, On Beyond Zebra!, Scrambled Eggs Super! and The Cat’s Quizzer. The aforementioned books portrayed people in ways that were “hurtful and wrong,” according to Dr. Seuss Enterprises. The books that are being recalled are lesser-known, but I do remember owning a copy of If I Ran the Zoo. I don’t remember much of the book; I remember my copies of Green Eggs and Ham and Cat in the Hat better. These books had a much larger impact on my childhood as their messages were those of positivity. For future generations of young children that choose to read Dr. Seuss, it is critical that the books that they pick up will cause them to see themselves in a positive light. Now more than ever, this world needs unity, and it starts with advocating for the rights of all people. Dr. Seuss Enterprises’ decision marks a step in the right direction.
Many people are responding to the cancellation of these books in a very negative way, but I, for one, am proud that Dr. Seuss Enterprises has recognized the racist depictions that were in these books and is doing something about it. Instead of reacting negatively to this news, we need to choose positivity by emphasizing the fact that our world is working to be more inclusive by rejecting stereotypes.
By Anna Prince, Contributing Writer