As revealed in the New York Post last week, the city has brilliantly banned a whole litany of topics from their standardized tests, deeming some subjects too controversial for children’s delicate sensibilities to handle.
Some of the most offensive items? Aliens, of course, are off limits, as are any mentions of birthdays, Halloween or dancing which could offend particular religious sects.
Let’s not forget the clearly necessary bans on irrelevant social issues such as divorce, poverty and disease; the city fortunately paired this with an embargo on any apparent disrespect toward authority, a move to surely designed to make Ghandi proud.
And luckily, the wise New Yorkers have even dropped any references to slavery or dinosaurs—it’s just too risky to expose vulnerable children to basic human and biological history in this tumultuous day and age.
But I for one argue that NYC failed to go far enough. While they may have literally barred any talking animals from their tests (Sorry, B’rer Rabbit), they failed in blocking any use of creatures. But, as we all know, mentioning animals is inherently exploitative, and we wouldn’t want to offend the reasonable folks at PETA.
Why not tackle bullying with this bold initiative and bar discussion of adolescent cruelty in schools? This way, at least until slurs are hurled on the school bus ride home, precious children would be safe from the evils of the world.
Of course, maybe the best solution is far simpler. If we issue schoolchildren big enough earmuffs, maybe they’ll never be forced to learn that the world is full of new ideas, and even populated by people who possess different opinions about the these ideas.
Why promote discussion of tough topics when you can so easily tune them out altogether?