- The Washington Times - Friday, September 29, 2017

The Democratic mayor of Dr. Seuss’ hometown of Springfield, Massachusetts, slammed an elementary school librarian who publicly rejected first lady Melania’s Trump’s book donation, calling the rejection “political correctness at its worst.”

Mayor Domenic Sarno on Thursday offered to take the books instead and invited President Trump and his wife to visit the Dr. Seuss museum, which opened in Springfield in June.

The offer comes after Cambridgeport Elementary School Liz Phipps Soeiro wrote an open letter to Mrs. Trump explaining that her school didn’t need the 10 Dr. Seuss books that the White House donated in honor of National Read a Book Day, claiming that Dr. Seuss’ illustrations are “steeped in racist propaganda, caricatures, and harmful stereotypes.”

Ms. Soeiro’s letter also slammed the Trump administration, asking, “Why not go out of your way to gift books to underfunded and underprivileged communities that continue to be marginalized and maligned by policies put in place by Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos?”

The Cambridge school system said Ms. Soeiro broke policy by publishing the letter and was subsequently counseled “on all relevant policies, including the policy against public resources being used for political purposes.” The district said the letter didn’t constitute an official rejection of the books.

Mr. Sarno, the Springfield mayor, offered “kudos” to Mrs. Trump for her “generous offer to donate Dr. Seuss books to that Cambridge school library — they don’t want them — we’ll take them and would be honored to have the First Lady and President Trump to visit the Amazing World of Dr. Seuss Museum too,” MassLive.com reported.

“‘One fish — two fish — red fish — blue fish’ — I think her comments ‘stink’ and are ridiculous towards our beloved Dr. Seuss,” he said of the Cambridge librarian. “We’re extremely proud to be home to the one and only Dr. Seuss Museum in the world. By the way, attendance has been through the roof, too! … Her comments that this is ‘racist propaganda and that Dr. Seuss is a bit of a cliche and a tired and worn ambassador for children’s literature’ is ‘political correctness’ at its worst.”

Dr. Seuss’ grandnephew, Ted Owens, also called Ms. Soeiro’s claims about the children’s book author “preposterous.”

“I know one thing for sure — I never saw one ounce of racism in anything he said, or how he lived his life, or what his stories were about,” he said, The Boston Herald reported. “When you have grinches and sneetches and all his other characters, how can you say that’s racist? His characters are based on made-up characters.”

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