By Judy Berman
How could one lovable, somewhat-confused, philosophical bear get into so much hot water?
Usually, Winnie the Pooh’s downfall is linked to honey pots.
But there he was getting dissed in a small Polish town because of a scandalous lack of clothing on his lower extremities.
He did have his little red jacket on. But no pants. Come to think of it, many of my stuffed animals are also “sans” pants.
It’s not the first time Pooh has had a brush with the politically correct police. He and his friends have come under fire before.
Town councilors in Tuszyn opposed naming a playground after Pooh because he was half-naked, and that was “inappropriate” for children.
One town official said the author, A. A. Milne, was a disturbed man for creating a “hermaphroditic, nudist bear,” according to an article in “The Washington Post.” Milne’s “bear of very little brain” was introduced in a collection of stories, Winnie-the-Pooh, in 1926.
Later, the Polish official said he was just joking.
How could you ever be upset with a bear who says: “Sometimes, the smallest things take up the most room in your heart.”
Pooh can hardly be considered controversial. But some consider him and the characters in another beloved children’s book to be subversive
“The same parent group in Kansas that objected to Charlotte’s Web in 2006 also cited the talking animals of Winnie the Pooh as being an insult to God in public arguments during their quest to ban the novel by E.B. White,” according to “Banned Books Awareness.”
As Milne said, “Some people talk to animals. Not many listen though. That’s the problem.”
Even little Piglet has been targeted by groups that want to censor him.
“Several institutions in Turkey and the U.K. (United Kingdom) have also banned the book, claiming that the character of Piglet is offensive to Muslims,” according to BuzzFeed Books.
“The Muslim Council of Britain formally requested an end to the “well-intentioned, but misguided” policy, and for all titles to be returned to the classroom,” according to Banned Books Awareness.
There’s no shortage of conspiracy theories, including claims that Winnie the Pooh is linked to a radical political group.
This makes my puzzler sore just thinking about such things.
What are your thoughts about book banning?
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Video: Hot List: Children’s Books You Won’t Believe Are Banned http://www.theblaze.com/stories/2014/05/01/hot-list-childrens-books-you-wont-believe-are-banned/
Main Photo: Winnie the Pooh and Piglet, from A.A. Milne’s “The Complete Tales of Winnie-the-Pooh,” with decorations by Ernest H. Shepard (1994). Original copyright 1926 (from a book in our family’s library).
Photo: Rocky and Bullwinkle, Winnie the Pooh, and The Snowman. Some of the beloved PANTLESS characters in my stuffed animals’ collection.
Photo: Winnie the Pooh, author A.A. Milne and his son, Christopher Robin, 1926 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/c/ce/Christopher_Robin_Milne.jpg
Link to source: “14 Classic Children’s Books That Have Been Banned in America.” (from 1900 to 2010) http://www.buzzfeed.com/spenceralthouse/classic-childrens-books-that-have-been-banned-in-america
Video: Dav Pilkey, the creator of Captain Underpants, stars in a banned books week video. When one of my seventh-grade students tell me they want to do a report on this book, I groan and tell them to choose one with more challenging vocabulary. BUT I would NEVER tell them they can’t read it on their own time. http://www.mediabistro.com/galleycat/dav-pilkey-stars-in-a-banned-books-week-video_b90729