Friday, January 22, 2010

California dist. bans Webster's Dictionary

It's too dirty

After a parent complained about an elementary school student stumbling across "oral sex" in a classroom dictionary, Menifee Union School District officials decided to pull Merriam Webster's 10th edition from all school shelves earlier this week. School officials will review the dictionary to decide if it should be permanently banned because of the "sexually graphic" entry, said district spokeswoman Betti Cadmus. (Press Enterprise)

The problem for the book-banning officials is, they have to be able to read through the dictionary themselves in order to find more sex-related words.

"It's hard to sit and read the dictionary, but we'll be looking to find other things of a graphic nature," Cadmus said. She explained that other dictionary entries defining human anatomy would probably not be cause for alarm.

To help Betti and the other officials build their case against the dictionary, I'm asking readers to comb through their copies of Webster's and send in any words, via the comments section, that might be considered inappropriate for school age children to read. Then I will forward them on to the good people at Meniffee.


  1. Warn Betti!

    I've been reading through Chapter C. I was horrified to find words like copulation and cunnilingus. Please warn Betti.

  2. Under C, how about
    coitus interruptus

    coitus in·ter·rup·tus
    Pronunciation: \-ˌin-tə-ˈrəp-təs\
    Function: noun
    Etymology: New Latin, interrupted coitus
    Date: 1900

    : coitus in which the penis is withdrawn prior to ejaculation to prevent the deposit of sperm into the vagina

  3. If it lasts more than 4 hours...

    n. 1. (Med.) More or less permanent erection and rigidity of the penis, with or without sexual desire.

  4. I think the district has summoned the Streisand effect and now that dictionary will be the fastest growing contraband item in the playground - well maybe not, I find it hard for school kids to get too excited about a dictionary after all.

  5. This story made ! Check it out for all the crazy headlines from our schools.

  6. Do any of you guys have children with cell phones, or internet? Then you should definitely ban those for sure, probably burn them. You think just looking up the definition of a word is bad, you have no idea what your kids are really learning. Try texting some of the text companies out there, and see the info they get. I never thought I would see the day, a dictionary would be banned.

  7. This is how adolescents and teens get pregnant -- through attempts to keep them ignorant of nature.

    Only a fool thinks reading the term "oral sex" will make somebody go out and have it peformed (or perform it).

    Hey, why not just burn the dictionary? Ban it?

    Here's something that should be banned -- the Bible. Lots of sex and violence in that work of fiction.

  8. Priapus


    1. Priapus Greek & Roman Mythology. The god of procreation, guardian of gardens and vineyards, and personification of the erect phallus.
    2. An image of this god, often used as a scarecrow in ancient gardens.
    3. A representation of a phallus.

  9. Ivorytowerkiwi,

    The dictionary can indeed be an exciting read for students. Comedian Steven Wright tells about reading the dictionary once. He "thought it was a poem about everything."


Agree? Disagree? Let me hear from you.