The Controversial Dr. Seuss

Did you know this was a thing? It has been popping up on my news feeds more and more lately. Rumors of Dr. Seuss having been a racist or news of a librarian refusing donations of his books. These reports pull the rug out from under all who adore his legacy. Anyone who follows my Facebook page knows that I am a huge fan of Dr. Seuss. From Oh! the Places You’ll Go! to Horton Hears a Who! to The Lorax, Theodor Seuss Geisel was a proponent of the hardworking underdog and for giving a voice to the unseen and oppressed. Whether they are thought-provoking words of wisdom or simply silly sayings that make you smile, Dr. Seuss’s impact reverberates throughout the world of both children and adults.

That said, his earlier works did paint a much different picture. He was a political cartoonist for a liberal newspaper during World War I. His depictions were openly racist against Asians, Japanese in particular, due to the war. Later in his career, however, Seuss regretted his views and mending his ways, used his talents to then champion people of color.

He later told his biographers, Judith and Neil Morgan, that he wanted his last words to be “We can and must do better than this!”

I am encouraged by this evidence of Seuss’s change of heart. It shows that our early mistakes cannot and do not define us. As Maria Robinson said, “Nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending.”

We are all works in progress. Our story is not over until we breathe our last, and not a moment before. No one knows how long our journey is in this life. Whether we are destined to run a marathon or the 100-year dash, we should never stop learning and seeing the world through different lenses. You can finish well, even if you had a crappy beginning. Start today, and always keep a sense of humor about you.

2018-08-14T12:50:12+00:00October 9th, 2017|1 Comment

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