Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Irony is Dead, Buried, and has had its Grave Pissed Upon.

So some lady wanted to ban Harry Potter. Who could blame her? If I believed that a fictitious fantasy (i.e. what fundamentalist Christians believe) were actually true, I'd probably feel threatened by another, more compelling and better written fictitious fantasy.

But now a brave soul has upped the ante. He wants to ban Fahrenheit 451:

Alton Verm, of Conroe, objects to the language and content in the book. His 15-year-old daughter Diana, a CCHS sophomore, came to him Sept. 21 with her reservations about reading the book because of its language. "The book had a bunch of very bad language in it," Diana Verm said. "It shouldn't be in there because it's offending people. ... If they can't find a book that uses clean words, they shouldn't have a book at all." Alton Verm filed a "Request for Reconsideration of Instructional Materials" Thursday with the district regarding "Fahrenheit 451," written by Ray Bradbury and published in 1953. He wants the district to remove the book from the curriculum. "It's just all kinds of filth," said Alton Verm, adding that he had not read "Fahrenheit 451."

It's been a long time since I read Fahrenheit 451, but I really don't recall a single "bad" word in the whole book. I'd ask Mr. Verm to point them out for me, but given that he hasn't even read the book, which is typical of these censorious asshats, he's not going to know either.

Here's what I do remember: Fahrenheit 451 was a pointed and passionate critique against censorship. The name of the book after all refers to the temperature at which paper catches fire, and was about a futuristic dystopia in which fire departments were charged with intentionally setting fires for the purpose of burning books.

As if my irony meter hadn't been abused enough already, we've just celebrated the American Library Association's banned books week. Nice timing, shithead.