Dictionaries are the ‘Where’s Waldo?’ of porn. Florida school district is right to ban them.

At first blush, it might sound crazy to ban dictionaries in schools. But it makes sense. After all, dictionaries are full of smut.

Florida’s book-banning frenzy in public schools has finally reached the dictionary level.

Thank God. 

A new state law that allows parents in Florida to restrict the reading material of other people’s children in public schools has caused thousands of titles to be pulled from school library shelves. 

All it takes is one parental complaint about a book that depicts or describes “sexual conduct” and the school has five days to remove it from the library shelves for a lengthy, open-ended review.

In Escambia County, where more than 1,600 titles have been pulled, according to PEN America, the banned list has included not only award-winning literary novels and biographies but also encyclopedias and dictionaries. 

Dozens line the street in Melbourne protesting book bans in January 2023.

I know. At first blush, it might sound crazy to ban dictionaries in schools. 

Especially during the time when so many young people spell the word “you” just with the letter U and a leading candidate for president writes about a “smocking gun.”

But it makes sense to ban dictionaries. After all, dictionaries are full of smut. 

Dictionaries are among the books flagged in Florida schools for inappropriate sexual content

It’s just that the offending sexual content in dictionaries requires a little bit of imagination. OK, maybe a lot of imagination. 

But the filth is all there in the form of unconnected words that are hidden alphabetically. Yes, it’s diabolical.

Nice try, Webster. But we see what you’re up to, and we won’t stand idly by as dictionaries stealthily indoctrinate our children. 

Don’t rob students of understanding:Why do both the left and right want to ban ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’?

Florida county dictionary ban goes right to the source

It’s undeniable. Dictionaries are the source material for every sexually inappropriate book imaginable. 

You just have to puzzle out the words and figure out which order to put them in. 

Take for example, “The Diary of a Young Girl” by Anne Frank, or “A Tale of Two Cities” by Charles Dickens, which are among the titles removed from school library shelves under the new state law.

All the words in those books are in the dictionary. Why not bypass the middleman and go right to the source by banning the dictionaries?

A copy of the graphic novel version of Anne Frank’s "Diary of a Young Girl."

Look at this way: Dictionaries are the “Where’s Waldo?” of pornography. We see you, well-hidden sexual content, and we’re not going to tolerate it.

And not only that, but dictionaries contain words that on their face are not considered obscene but are certainly inappropriate when exposed to fertile teenage minds. 

I’m talking about words such as fiduciary, pusillanimous and syllogism. 

You’re telling me they’re not dirty words? We can’t take that chance with our young people. 

Even the word “dictionary” is problematic.https://www.usatodaynetworkservice.com/tangstatic/html/usat/sf-q1a2z330306dc3.min.html

So, some Florida schools are taking the prudent safeguard by banning the dictionary. 

I think Gov. Ron DeSantis said it best when he talked about the sweeping need for this book-banning initiative.

“Florida is proud to lead the way in standing up for our children,” he said when signing the bill last May. “As the world goes mad, Florida represents a refuge of sanity and a citadel of normalcy.” 

Governor Ron DeSantis speaks on the book bans in Florida

Yes, so no more dictionaries. Here in the free state of Florida, we don’t need a book reminding us that there’s no “e” in the middle of the word “judgment.”

What’s next, the Bible?

Also, as a side benefit of banning dictionaries, it will allow underage students in Florida more time to read the BIble. 

But probably not the parts of the Bible about incest, rape and all that “begetting” that’s described. 

Book bans signal end of free speech:You can’t tell the truth about the Holocaust in Poland. Could that happen in the US?

And we’ll have to review the 355 times in the Bible the word “seed” pops up – most of which have nothing to do with the planting of crops.

Hmm. Come to think of it, to be safe, we ought to pull the Bible, too.

Why read, anyway? Quit trying to be a “coastal elite.” 

Celebrate the empty book shelves. You’re living in Florida, the book-banning citadel of normalcy that flags dictionaries.

Frank Cerabino

Frank Cerabino is a news columnist with The Palm Beach Post, where this column first published.

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