They are meddling with my hero and favorite author, Mark Twain. Today, it was announced that this so-called Mark Twain scholar is going to rewrite “Huckleberry Finn” and eliminate the N word. The book has been banned in many places for many years because the N word is offensive and considered racist. People have been talking about doing this for years and now the professor is going to substitute the word ‘Slave” for the N word. How brilliant, and what a way for him to make some bucks to supplement his paltry teachers salary and gain a little fame at the same time.
I have studied Mark Twain all my life and agree with Ernest Hemingway who said that all of American literature starts with the book “Huckleberry Finn.” Twain was the first truly American author. He captured the language of the people and addressed one of the greatest problems in our country, slavery. It is a book that is antiracist and antislavery. Like so many things with Twain, he pokes fun at our ignorance regarding the acceptance of different races and the evils of slavery. Huck and Jim address these problems on their boat trip down the Mississippi. Huck comes to realize that Jim is a human being like everyone else and he cares for his wife and children just like the white folks. Huck decided, he had just as soon go to hell, as to do what was considered right, and turn Jim in.
If this professor is going to sanitize Twain he has a lot of work in store. Twain had a pretty poison pen when it came to hypocrisy. He poked fun at almost everything in society, especially politicians. He also went after medicine, ministers, religion, health practices, charlatans and just about anything you can name. He wrote an entire book exposing Christian Scientist. He hated American Imperialism and was very critical of our government. He was especially tough on God himself, as well as most of the Bible. If the professor chooses to clean all this up, then we have no Mark Twain or at least one I wouldn’t care to read.
This professor is doing what Tom Sawyer did in his story. He is whitewashing. I plan to keep my old editions of Huckleberry Finn that are not whitewashed, and give me the true voice of Twain, and America at the time it was written. Twain is probably turning over in his grave with the news of today. If he were alive he would challenge the professor by rewriting the book himself with the title being changed to “Nigger Jim”.
There you have it. I have used this forbidden word in my blog. I’m looking for the police to appear on the porch any minute, along with representatives from the NAACP, and other organizations representing political correctness to ban my blog. If they show up, I will just say the N word over and over, even though in my heart I despise the word and feel the same as Huck Finn and Mark Twain. Twain hated political correctness, but would join me in reciting the word in 2011 because it brings into sharp and harsh focus the nastiness of prejudice and racism.