Monday, 20 September 2010
Um, excuse me?! Either he hasn't read it, and is just acting on complaints of other parents, or he is very disturbed if he finds that rape is pornography.
One such book is called "Speak." ...As the main character in the book is alone with a boy who is touching her female parts, she makes the statement that this is what high school is supposed to feel like. The boy then rapes her on the next page. Actually, the book and movie both contain two rape scenes.
I seriously doubt that this Wesley Scroggins, the writer of the article, has even read Speak. Unless I missed something, then there's only one rape scene in the book. And it isn't even graphic. It's more about what Melinda feels like, and what's going through her head. Nay, I suppose any readers 13+ could read the book.
And, what, then? We read about sexual assault in newspapers and on the television and the radio- so why should books be any different? What world does Scroggins live in if he thinks that such novels corrupt our safe, happy childhood innocence?
It makes you wonder what Scroggins was like as a teenager, actually. Another part of the article proceeds to talk about the evils of sex education being taught to eighth-graders, to which I can only say; better we young'uns know about the, erm, ways of the world than we don't. The teenage pregnancy rate here in England is the highest in Europe. Surely Scroggins' way of wanting to keep us all in the dark is only encouraging that?
The very idea of banning Speak is to my mind ludicrous. Speak has helped many people come to terms with all shapes and sizes of abuse since it was first published in 1999. It faces the brutal truth, which otherwise would be just swept under the carpet and left there for years, silent, smoldering into nothingness like the unspoken (that's the poet in me coming out), which Melinda tries so hard to hide in Speak. But you know what the message is? There's a clue in the title. Speak up.