... Or maybe you will. After all, this is about the Grand Rapids public schools.
Allegedly without reviewing it, the city school district ordered 140 copies of The Literary Experience as an literature appreciation textbook for advanced placement classes at City High. After shelling out sixty bucks a pop for the book and receiving shipment, administrators finally got the idea of checking out its contents. Only then did they discover the mistake they had made.
The Literary Experience is a collection of short stories, the prize pig of which is a 70-page tale of two brothers who cannot utter a sentence without a "s---" or a "f---" in it as they talk about their vile lives of sex, drugs, and crime in the urban jungle. Now I would have thought that if an honors English cirriculum needed a good story about brothers with a penchant for finding trouble, Dostoyevsky's Brothers Karamazov would have fit the bill. Certainly a bill less than $60 a book.
Well, at least school administrators, after having failed to vet The Literary Experience before taking delivery of the volume, didn't fail to recognize its unsuitability as a textbook. Plan "A" is to return the books. If they can't do that (seeing that they have already stamped them the property of the Grand Rapids Public Schools), Plan "B" is to cut out the pages of the offensive short story from each book before distributing it to students.
Of course, that back-up plan already has the usual suspects hysterically denouncing school administrators as censors. Need we discuss the idiocy of defining censorship as the adult exercise of judgment as to what textbooks should be used for the instruction of minors? No, anyone who can't get that, won't ever get it. Instead, let's turn our attention toward the captain of this ship of fools. That would be none other than the Board of Education vice president, Lisa Hinkel.
She is horrified at the prospect that school administrators might deny their young charges the joys of reading filth. Shaken by their tyrannical designs upon our youngsters, Hinkel shuddered, "I can't advocate for cutting pages from a book. That just goes against everything I believe." This from the woman who a couple of weeks ago told parents unhappy with the quality of education at the city's public high schools to pack their bags and get the hell out of town. Maybe it's time parents told Hinkel to pack her bags.