Now that all the conclusions about the decline in reading have been laid out, it’s time to weigh in well after the worthwhile arguments have been exhausted. I’m talking about the Negro problem. Think of the television public-service ad featuring that African-American basketball player (African-American sports figures reading? Never mind that rapist Mike Tyson reading Voltaire in the joint. We have well-hung stereotypes to maintain.) or the one depicting a prominent member of NAMBLA (Caucasian, and thus better) reading to a group of young boys shortly before a tête-a-tête. How can anyone get excited about reading when there are so many personal prejudices to dwell upon? After all, isn’t there a larger question here about giving life imprisonment to the Cacuasian and keeping Tyson on death row?
Now, in the wake of a well-referenced ALA report that you, my dear pale-skinned readers in the burbs, haven’t heard about — there’s a movement by these bleeding hearts to get more people reading. There was recently a Barack Obama speech that actually suggested some “slander” regarding a black kid with a book being considered white. I don’t understand. Are the Negros getting uppity again? Shouldn’t we be telling our lovable black brothers to keep their positions as lovable comedians (whether cute and cuddly like Wayne Brady or populist and provocative like Dave Chappelle), supporting characters who get killed off first in horror movies or who serve as magical sidekicks for aging, toupeed and pancaked Caucasian leads, WASPified secretaries of state told what to do by a unilateral administration, and well-hung sports stars?
We cannot permit the black man to read. Because that would involve them becoming informed citizens! They may actually transform the American power base!
To me, the best way to think about reading is to consider it the exclusive territory of the white man. Let those who live in gated communities have their golden libraries! Really, it works out better that way. Keep the inner cities equipped with rotting schools and dilapidated libraries. We gave them Pruitt-Igoe and it didn’t work! Why aren’t they grateful?
I should point out that when I was at 17, I read The Autobiography of Malcolm X. I mention this because I want you to know that there was a point in my life when I was “down with the kids.” Anyway, I was frightened of the Negros. I was certain that a race war was going on, because one of those black people actually tried to introduce himself to me. It was one of the scariest moments of my life. But like any good (now ex-)liberal, I tried to see it from the black point of view. But my two best friends, who showed up to the homecoming cance dressed in really spectacular white gowns and hoods, didn’t like what I was reading.
Well, I saw the light. And now here I am in Virginia still trying to understand why my fellow Virginian Thomas Jefferson wrote words against slavery.
Where was I going with this? Ah yes. Words are potent. And we should begin burning books at the inauguration should Uncle George win again. It’s the American thing to do.