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Opinion Blog

Dr. Seuss versus Fox News

By Alex McClung          Posted: 02/23/12 8:09pm         

Fox Business Network host Lou Dobbs always has been quick to criticize his friends in the “liberal” media for protecting President Obama and reporting biased news. One of his latest ideas is that Obama and his friends in Hollywood are brainwashing children using a classic story by Dr. Seuss.

On Tuesday night during his broadcast of “Lou Dobbs Tonight,” he claimed that the 2012 movie “Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax,” scheduled for release in theaters March 2, is liberal Hollywood’s most recent attempt to “indoctrinate our children” using underlying messages with liberal sentiments.

“Where have we heard this before?” Dobbs asked while playing short clips from the movie, citing Occupy Wall Street as pitting the “makers against the takers” as a graphic on the screen reads “Lorax movie pushes anti-industry message.”

It doesn’t take an expert on literary analysis to figure out Seuss’ book about a woodland creature who says he “speaks for the trees” has an obvious liberal swing in favor of environmental protection over industrial expansion. However, imagining that this movie would have such a substantial effect on the minds of America’s youth is a drastic claim.

I grew up on Seuss’ literature. His stories were entertaining and substantial, and each story presented new characters and intriguing plotlines.

My favorite tale was “Oh, the Places You’ll Go!,” which chronicles the challenges and changes one faces upon entering a new stage of life, a story line that everyone can relate to at one time or another. As a child, the message I found in this story was that of perseverance — we will all encounter good and bad throughout life’s journey, but in the end, everything always works out.

As I grew older and became more analytical of the literature in front of me, the underlying messages of Seuss’ stories became more clear. “Yertle the Turtle,” a story written by Seuss about a turtle named Mack who organizes the overthrowing of a tyrannical king Yertle, is a plotline that echoes many revolutions throughout history.

“The Cat in the Hat,” Seuss’ most well-known book, describes an eccentric cat who pays a visit to two children and causes catastrophe — and is actually a critique of the conventionalist disposition displayed in America’s middle-class suburbia.

Yet, it took me 13 years of education to come up with these analyses of Seuss’ work. As a child, I would only skim the surface of these stories’ messages, and I’m sure many children who will be viewing “Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax” will enjoy the story in the same fashion as I did.

Although Lou Dobbs might think this movie will indoctrinate America’s youth with liberal politicians’ agendas, “The Lorax” has an audience too young to comprehend the political message in its content. Picket lines of 7 and 8-year-olds will not be showing up on Capitol Hill after watching it, demonizing industry as they call for America to change its environmental policies.

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