A GOP congressman has introduced a bill called the GRINCH Act that would deny federal funding to any government agency that tries to cancel or censor books. Instead, he maintains that it should be left up to the parents to monitor what their offspring are reading and make decisions accordingly.
“We must not allow the left to wage further attacks on students’ First Amendment rights…No one is safe from the woke culture. Not even Dr. Seuss,” Rep. John Joyce (R-Pa.) said, alluding to several of the beloved children’s books that have recently been pulled from circulation.
Inspired by the Dr. Seuss-created fictional creature, the acronym for the proposed law stands for the “Guarding Readers’ Independence and Choice” Act. The law sends a message, Joyce asserted, that “we can’t let the left cancel us.”
Rep. Joyce, who is also a medical doctor, told Dana Perino on the Fox News Channel program “America’s Newsroom” that the intention of the bill is to let parents rather than bureaucrats make decisions about a reading list.
“You and I realize that the cancel culture is rapidly attacking our American institutions, our libraries, our schools. And like so many, I’m alarmed at the left’s attempt to cancel historic books, characters,” Joyce asserted.
(Source: Fox News)
“The GRINCH Act would prevent our taxpayers’ dollars from supporting states and local governments that ban books. I’m someone who visits the libraries throughout Pennsylvania, my district in south central and southwestern Pennsylvania. Yesterday, I was in one of those libraries,” Joyce continued.
“They took me into the children’s section and showed me the shelf full of Dr. Seuss books,” he aid.
“If you find that these books are offensive to your children, then the parents should be the ones who make that decision. Government should not be making that. And federal dollars should not support anyone who bans books. Our First Amendment rights, those of our adults and our children, must be defended,” he added.
“We have to understand that we cannot turn back and ban great historic people, great historic images, that are part of our childhood.”
Joyce recalled that just as his father read Dr. Seuss books to him when he was a child, he is reading them to his granddaughter as he did with his own kids when they were young.
“There are important lessons in these books, but the parents are the ones who should be guiding the children, not government. We don’t need to be woke,” he said.
While noting the overwhelmingly positive response to the proposal among his constituents, the lawmaker indirectly implied that no Democrat is backing the legislation thus far, but he is hopeful of bipartisan support.
Free-speech advocates would likely agree that modern-day book burning, as some describe it, for material traditionally viewed as benign, is problematic (one of the liberals’ favorite words). This is because, in a pre-woketopia world at least, it is almost always unrealistic to try to apply contemporary standards to classic works of art.
As a side note, some might even construe the GRINCH Act as pro-choice.
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