Late Night: “Captain Underpants” Most Challenged Book of the Year

 

The American Library Association has released its list of the most challenged books of the past year, and Fifty Shades of Grey was only number four on the list, beaten out by the charming and funny kid’s book series,  Captain Underpants, Sherman Alexie’s prize-winning “The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian,” and Jay Asher’s Thirteen Reasons Why.

The ALA’s  Office for Intellectual Freedom defines a challenge as a

formal, written complaint filed with a library or school requesting that a book or other material be restricted or removed because of its content or appropriateness.

The first three books on the list were considered unsuitable for any age. Fifty Shades of Grey was challenged for its sexytime situations, and some libraries claimed the smutty trilogy was too poorly written to be stocked, according the Guardian. (And yet, Jackie Collins can be found on shelves…)

In the past decade the  top ten list list included works by Mark Twain, Maya Angelou, Alice Walker, Toni Morrison, Maurice Sendak, Judy Blume, J.D. Salinger, John Steinbeck, Harper Lee, and J.K. Rowlings. Nobel Laureate Morrison’s Beloved made the top ten list this year.

The 2012 list of most challenged books is 25% longer than 2011′s but not as extensive as during the last two decades of the 20th century.

Captain Underpants, challenged for

offensive language, unsuited for age group

is so much fun. The book follows the adventures of schoolkids as

they duel Dr. Diaper, tackle the talking toilets, clash with the crazy cafeteria ladies, plot against Professor Poopypants, and wrestle the wicked Wedgie Woman. Overflowing with humor, action, and that world-famous cheesy animation technique, Flip-O-Rama, this boxed collection will make kids laugh until soda comes out their noses.

No doubt the anti-authoritarian tone is what got folks all sandy-pants over Captain Underpants!

Author Dav Pilkey who based the books on his own elementary school experiences, issued this statement:

It’s pretty exciting to be on a list that frequently features Mark Twain, Harper Lee, and Maya Angelou. But I worry that some parents might see this list and discourage their kids from reading Captain Underpants, even though they have not had a chance to read the books themselves.

Anonymous Exposes BART Exec Linton Johnson Over Cellphone Shutdown

Linton Johnson, BART's man with a big, bad idea

Sexytime goes public for BART spokeshole Linton Johnson! Anonymous claims they were sent photos of the dapper talking head whose words have enraged free speech activists. Some photos were available on Linton Johnson’s open to the public Facebook page, since made private, while others were on his me.com page. Anonymous are circulating them on Twitter. One Anon tweeted:

Im exactly as worried about Lintons privacy as he was about everyones civil rights. In other words not at all.

I’ve seen 14 pictures and some are pretty embarrassing: Linton Johnson in a tee shirt reading STIFF pulling down his red  shorts to reveal his manhood (actually, most men would be proud to have that chunk of flesh, but like, he was dropping drawers in a large group); Linton Johnson mugging and dancing for the camera while in a bar on vacation in Australia; and the most embarrassing of all, Linton Johnson making a cute face wearing a STUD tee shirt and an ugly pink, plastic beaded veil. Seriously, wtf on that fashion choice?

Anonymous has singled out Linton Johnson for his high-handed actions in the August 11 suspension of cellphone service, the first time a government agency in the United States blocked telecommunications service in an attempt to hamper a protest. Anonymous is  demanding Linton Johnson’s resignation, along with that of BART’s chief of police Kenton Rainey.

Linton Johnson claims responsibility for coming up with the epic fail idea to shutdown BART’s platform and train car cellphone service on August 11 to prevent protests. Wired reports:

“It came to me in the middle of the morning,” Johnson said, referring to the idea hours before BART authorities unplugged underground antennas at its four downtown stations during the rush-hour commute. “I sent it to the police department and they said they liked it. They started vetting it.”

Then Linton Johnson went on vacation, returning three days early to deal with the first #opBART Anonymous organized protest.

Linton Johnson has few things to learn about the Internet, like anything you email out can be sent to someone else; and your photos aren’t private if you post them to Facebook and don’t click “friends-only”. (UPDATE Linton Johnson made his FB account private after this post was published).

And Linton Johnson definitely needs to study up on the Constitution. Here are  Linton Johnson’s choice comments on our Constitutional rights:

They made us choose between people’s ability to use their mobile phones (and) their constitutional right to get from point A to point B

a Constitutional right to safety.

No, Linton Johnson, there is no clause in the Constitution that states there is a “right to get from point A to point B” or a “right to safety.”

And, Linton Johnson, it looks like the FCC thinks your idea was a bad one. FCC Commissioner said that BART’s critics have

a valid point.

BART board president Bob Franklin said at today’s special meeting the cell phone service suspension

wasn’t about silencing protesters

which appears to be a contradiction of  Linton Johnson’s brilliant idea and comments from BART police lieutenant Andy Alkire who said, shutting off cellphone service in anticipation of a protest was :

a great tool to utilize for this specific purpose

If the purpose of shutting off cell service was not to silence protesters who might use cellphones to coordinate, then why was service shut down? For their safety? How does not having phone service make you safer?
Linton Johnson, the architect of this mess, should step down: He is an embarrassment to BART. And not because he dresses stupidly on vacation.

photo from Anonymous, via Twitter


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