Every single day, white conservatives remind us who the biggest “snowflakes” in America actually are.
On Monday, Glenn Youngkin, the GOP’s great white hope in Virginia’s gubernatorial race, released a campaign ad featuring a woman who, in 2012 and 2013, embarked on a mission to get iconic, Nobel Prize-winning Black author Toni Morrison’s novel Beloved removed from her son’s school’s AP English curriculum because, as she claims, the book gave her son nightmares.
“As a parent, it’s tough to catch everything,” Fairfax County mother Laura Murphy said in the ad. “So when my son showed me his reading assignment, my heart sunk. It was some of the most explicit material you can imagine. I met with lawmakers. They couldn’t believe what I was showing them. Their faces turned bright red with embarrassment.” (I’d be remiss if I didn’t point out the likelihood that “their faces turned bright red with embarrassment” means she only showed Morrison’s novel to a bunch of pasty white people.)
For those who are unfamiliar with the book, Morrison’s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel Beloved is based on the true story of a Black woman named Sethe who, after escaping slavery, killed her eldest daughter to prevent her from suffering the torture of being enslaved. Truthfully, it’s a hard read that depicts gang rape, bestiality and is unapologetically graphic in describing the cruelty of the slave trade in America.
Now, when I first saw this ad, I just knew Murphy’s son must have been about 12 when he got nightmares reading the book. I had to watch Roots in middle school when I was 12, and it certainly messed my head up a bit. Of course, I was a Black kid watching Black enslaved people being treated like the animals their masters actually were. Still, I can see a pre-teen being unable to handle such content.
Only, according to the Washington Post, it turns out Murphy’s son was an 18-year-old high school senior reading college-level material in his advanced placement English class.
BRUH, THIS MAN WAS THE SAME AGE TRE WAS IN BOYZ N THE HOOD!!
Seriously though, his “kid” was crawling into his mommy’s bed talking about he’s having nightmares when he was one year older than Trayvon Martin was when a cave beast thought he should die because he didn’t look like he belonged in the neighborhood.
He was four years older than Emmet Till was when he was brutally tortured and murdered by white men who were just as cruel as the slavers in Morrison’s book.
He was six years older than Tamir Rice was when police officers thought he looked enough like an adult to shoot dead.
Laura Murphy tried to have Toni Morrison’s 1987 classic removed from the entire curriculum because her son, who was legally an adult, couldn’t handle the horrors of the true story of America’s past.
To be fair, Murphy claimed at the time that she wasn’t “some crazy book burner,” and that she only wanted the book pulled until the school board implemented a requirement to notify parents about reading materials with sexually explicit content (because, apparently, it wasn’t the cruelty and systemic oppression of Black people who were owned as property that gave her and her son the heebee-jeebees—it was just the bestiality and other explicit sexual acts that dit it).
Still, Murphy—who, by the way, isn’t the only white Virginian who has tried to ban a Morrison novel from schools—was aiming to have the book pulled from the school’s curriculum, not just from her son’s reading list. So while she was complaining that parents weren’t getting a say in what their “children” were assigned to read, she was seeking a ruling that would remove the book from the reading list of all students regardless of whether they wanted to read it or not.
Fortunately, the Fairfax County School Board rejected Murphy’s little white fragility bid, so she decided to take the issue up with the Republican-controlled state legislature, which resulted in the passing of the “Beloved Bill,” which reduced the Black historical novel down to its sexually explicit content, which the law would require parents be warned about.
But former Democratic Gov. Terry McAuliffe, who served as governor of Virginia from 2014 to 2018 and is now running against Youngkin for another term, vetoed the bill, which is basically the focus of Youngkin’s ad.
“This is his closing message. Glenn Youngkin is promoting banning a book by one of America’s most prominent Black authors,” McAuliffe said Tuesday during a rally with President Joe Biden, CNN reported. “Just the fact he is even discussing this brings shame here to the commonwealth of Virginia.”
Youngkin claimed his ad had nothing to do with race and was only about parental control…I mean, choice, but, according to CNN, he has also joined other Republicans in backing policies to ban Critical Race Theory into oblivion.
So, nah, I’m pretty sure these people just have a problem with Black history being taught to their fragile white “children.”
The problem is that these cruel, oppressive and rapey things happened to human beings, not that white students might have to read about them.