So that’s not stupid AT ALL

In CategoryNavel Gazing

Or wait – I shouldn’t use the word “stupid.”

The New York City Department of Education is seeking to have words they deem upsetting removed from standardized tests.

Lookit. I don’t think that certain topics should be discussed in school. And I think standardized tests are stupid and pointless.

But banning a whole list of words because someone MIGHT be offended?

Here’s a list:

• Dinosaur
Really? dinosaur? That’s offensive? Seems like a reach to me.

• Children dealing with Serious Issues
That seems more like a concept than a word, but whatever. And who decides what is a Serious Issue? Because we’ve had a lot of discussions around here about whether Mom putting the cheese in the wrong place on a taco constitutes a Serious Issue.

• Computers in the Home – note: it is acceptable to talk about computers in the library
Because people will become jealous if they don’t have a computer at home? Feeling jealous is not the same as feeling offended, so maybe I’m wrong on that one. BUT if I’m right, then I also want to ban all talk of iPods and iPads, because I have neither and cannot bear being reminded of the horrible, iPad-shaped hole in my heart. Also knee-high boots, which I don’t have, but want desperately.

• Homes with swimming pools
See above. Although… I DO hate people who have pools. Who do they think they are?

• Junk food
I’m an unfit teacher by this measure. I turn all math problems into cookies – “if you have SEVEN cookies, and I steal THREE cookies…?

• Bodily Functions
Okay. Here’s what I’m wondering at this point. Is it REALLY necessary to ban talk of BODILY FUNCTIONS on a New York City Standardized Test? What kind of questions did they have BEFORE the ban?

The whole list has something like 50 words on it. I don’t see how they narrowed it down, frankly.

You know what’s offensive? The price of gas, that’s offensive. And how loud my children smack when they eat. And people who don’t know the difference between knitting and crocheting. And people who mix up lose and loose. And people who mispronounce the word realtor.

And this. This has to be the most offensive commercial I’ve ever seen:

Firstly, everyone who is in a position to need to buy diapers knows what happens in them and they’d just as soon not think about it more than is absolutely necessary. Secondly, people who DON’T need to buy diapers don’t want to think about it either.

So there you go. I somehow got from a word ban to a diaper commercial. Interpret as you will.