The Foreword:
  • Six Dr. Seuss books will stop being published.
  • Racist and insensitive imagery within the books is the reason behind the decision.
  • Step-daughter told NY Post: “There wasn’t a racist bone in that man’s body."

No longer are past mistakes or lapses in judgement challenged by checks and balances and critical critique, but rather a new-found black-and-white passion to outright cancel it. Today’s “cancel culture” is just as much controversial as it is embraced by social media juries. Even beloved children’s author Theodore Geisel, better known as Dr. Seuss, caught a cancel stray recently. On March 2, 2021, when Geisel would have turned 116 years old, Dr. Seuss Enterprises, a business which preserves and protects the brand, announced that six titles would cease publication due to racist and insensitive imagery.

Bookmakers over at Bovada elected to forgo the cat in the hat in favor of an ace up their sleeve when they posted odds that more Dr. Seuss books would be removed from publication this year.

Will Any Additional Dr. Seuss Books Be Removed From Publication In 2021? Odds
Yes +350
No -600

Dr. Seuss CANCELLED

The six Dr. Seuss books that will cease publication moving forward include his first book, “And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street,” which depicts an Asian person using chopsticks when eating from a bowl and wearing a conical hat. It’s worth noting this first Seuss book was published in 1941 during World War II. The other five discontinued books are “If I Ran a Zoo,” “McElligot’s Pool,” “On Beyond Zebra!,” “Scrambled Eggs Super!,” and “The Cat’s Quizzer,” which posed the question “How old do you have to be to be a Japanese.”

Dr. Seuss books no longer published

“The Cat’s Quizzer” (Dr. Seuss)

Despite the headline-snatching controversy swept up in the 24-hour news cyclone, Dr. Seuss’ step-daughter is defending the iconic author. She recently told the New York Post:

“There wasn’t a racist bone in that man’s body — he was so acutely aware of the world around him and cared so much,’’ Lark Grey Dimond-Cates said. However, she understood why the business decision was made.

“I think in this day and age it’s a wise decision,” she told the NY Post. “I think this is a world that right now is in pain, and we’ve all got to be very gentle and thoughtful and kind with each other.”

Once Dr. Seuss Enterprises’ announcement became widespread, sales of the divisive titles started to soar on Amazon, while eBay made the executive decision to pull book listings of entrepreneurial opportunists looking to cash in on the controversy.

Speaking of cash, Dr. Seuss is the second-highest paid celebrity no longer with us behind only Michael Jackson. According to Forbes, Seuss, who passed away in 1991, sold six million books and raked in $33-million in 2020.

One Meme, Two Meme, Red Meme, Blue Meme

The Dr. Seuss decision came less than a week after Hasbro created a cloud of confusion when it announced that the company was dropping the “Mr.” from their Potato Head line of kid’s toys – in an effort to be more inclusive – but still keeping the Mr. and Mrs. Potato Head characters. This outrage pivot allowed pundits to momentarily swap out their torches for pitchforks and, oh yeah, a bountiful crop of topical memes were harvested.

It also allowed for a fresh batch of “whataboutism” to flourish. While the 2021 Grammy Award ratings were down 53% to a record low, it appears enough eyeballs caught Meg Thee Stallion and Cardi B’s provocative performance of their hip-hop hit, “WAP.” This immediately led to some itchy Tweetin’ fingers to fire off hot take after hot take wondering how they cancel Seuss and embrace “WAP.”

The ongoing debate is a delicate, ahem, dance for sure.

Pop Culture Odds

It’s hard to gauge which entertainment genre will be “cancel culture’s” next target. However, the executives over at Turner Movie Classics, or TCM on your channel guide, have made strides to get out in front of any potential efforts to blacklist famous movies. TCM’s “Reframed: Classic Films In The Rearview Mirror” has a primary function, “The goal is never to censor, but simply provide rich historical context to each classic.” So, they’ll be screening iconic 20th century movies like “Gone With the Wind” from a 21st century perspective via a roundtable panel discussion.

The complete schedule of TCM’s reviews runs through the end of the month, which just so happens to coincide with the final one-month countdown until the 2021 Academy Awards. We’ve loaded up our Oscars odds preview page with everything you need to know before Hollywood’s premiere award ceremony takes place on April 25, 2021.

Ryan Fowler

Ryan has covered sports on every media platform over the past 17+ years. The first seven years of his professional career were spent as a sports anchor and reporter at various local television stations, while he picked up side gigs as a freelance sports columnist and recurring radio guest before he decided to jump to the web. As content manager of sports simulation website WhatIfSports.com and senior editor of FOXSports.com's fantasy baseball and football coverage for the better part of this decade, Ryan embraces advanced metrics, trends, and outside-the-box angles to find his edge. You can follow him on Twitter @FreelanceFowler.

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