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December 29th, 2004 Steffen Silvis | Special Section Stories
 

First in the Fire: The Books of 2004

Mr. Mabon, Mr. Beres, Miz Georgene Rice, and friends:

     
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Thank y'all for havin' me a-visit ya here in Oregone. Ya know, not since that family-rich and godly time of the 1920s have we had the opportunity ta banish offensive books once and for all from our glorious, patriotic land. I recall one a our 'lustrious members back in 1927 who said that my great state a Alabama didn't need no libraries 'cause we had the Bible1. We didn't listen ta those wise words now, did we, and look where we are. The precious word a God has been outnumbered on our nation's shelves. But thanks ta our recent turnin' back ta moral values, we may yet prevail.

Now, friends, you know I've suggested that Alabama ban any book that promotes Sodomites, and we'll do it, too. And I'm sure ta have all a yer support out here in Oregone, 'specially now that you've got them thar a-marryin' queers on the run. But we cain't go a-stoppin' thar, friends. No sir, we need ta weed the whole messy patch. Now I recall some good work our people did down in Montgomery, where back in 1983 we banned that Diary of Anne Frank for its sexual permissiveness. Plus, if ya ever scanned the thing, you know it's a real downer2, folks. Well, it's time ta take the clippers ta more and we might, I reckon, start with new books:

Philip Roth's The Plot Against America. The only plot I'm a-seein' is tryin' ta tar this God-lovin' land with lies. This Roth, a New Yorker intellectual, reimagines the Greatest Generation™ as Nazis, friends! Has a known hero, Charles Lindbergh, become a friend a Hitler! Oughtta burn this ol' book first.

Susanna Clarke's Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell. Apparently this Miss Clarke ain't read what the word a God has ta say about magic-practicin'. This gal's concocted a tale that takes place in England during the Napoleonic Wars that's filled with witchery. It's been called "Harry Potter for adults," friends, which is as good as sayin' Satan wrote it.

T.C. Boyle's The Inner Circle. Sure, we need ta ban that filthy movie Kinsey first, as more people can read a movie than can read a book. But this here novel on Kinsey is just as dire, filled with Sodomite chat and body-rubbin'. I hear Jesus a-cryin' just talkin' 'bout it out loud.

So let's burn this garbage and reinstate the only book that matters: the Holy Bible. Well, I guess we can have the Left Behind series, too. God Bless Alabama and Oregone, and God blast the rest.

Sincerely,

Gerald Allen

By Rep. Gerald Allen (R-Cottondale, Ala.) on a recent trip to Drain, Ore. (as recorded by Steffen Silvis)


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1 Actual quote from an Alabama state representative.

2 Actual quote from the Alabama State Textbook Committee.

 
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