Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Editing The Past

Well, looks like the PC revisionists are at it again. At least they waited 100 years after the passing of Samuel Clemens before they took a hatchet to his work.

For those not in the know, apparently the publisher NewSouth Books has released a version of Mark Twain's classic novel, Adventures of Huckelberry Finn, in which all instances of a certain word which begins with the letter 'N' have been replaced with the word 'slave'.

I hope they have included an attribution to a second author, Alan Gribben, much as they have done with the novels of the new mashup genre. But I digress.

Why am I once again defending the use of the 'N' word? Because that's the word the author used. What's more, that's the word his characters would have used. Don't forget, this book was first published over 115 years ago. It is not only period correct, it was written in that period! In fact, initial criticism of the book wasn't that it contained the 'N' word, but rather, at least in part, that it portrayed a black man as a sympathetic and fully human person. Go figure.

Denying the realities of history is like poking out an eye. Sure, you might not see anything on that side anymore, but that doesn't mean that nothing is there.

It is even worse to push such ignorance on others. Want to know why the youth of today are so dumb? Look to those who are taking a black marker to history.

Wait a few more years and the word 'slave' will no doubt be replaced with 'freedom challenged person' or whatever PC term is popular at the moment. At least that would be synonymous with the word it is replacing (the first substitution, not the original).

Here are some famous quotes to close with:

"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it."
- George Santayana

". . . he who does not know the past can never understand the present, and he certainly can do nothing for the future."
- John Diefenbaker

"Freedom includes the right to say what others may object to and resent. . . The essence of citizenship is to be tolerant of strong and provocative words."
- John Diefenbaker

"Censorship is telling a man he can't have a steak just because a baby can't chew it."
- Samuel Clemens (aka Mark Twain)

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