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Letters to the Herald

Policy an affront to community known for tolerance


Policy 321 enacted by the Central Bucks School District muzzles free education speech about tolerating human difference. It is especially astonishing that this draconian directive is happening in a place that has long lead in tolerating difference.

Historic proof of our area’s abhorrence of hate was expressed publicly more than seven decades ago by our area’s arguably best known accepters of racial, ethnic, gender, religious, diversity. I am referring to the late residents Oscar Hammerstein II and James A. Mitchener.

Hammerstein almost single handedly invented the modern American musical, writing his most famous productions on his Doylestown farm. Michener, also a Doylestown resident, wrote some of our country’s most popular fiction and nonfiction. The two are especially well-known for their collaboration for the 1949 Broadway hit “South Pacific.” Hammerstein created the songs and production based on Michener’s book “Tales of the South Pacific.”

How sad that our esteemed school board seems to think one song in particular, “You’ve got to be taught,” is a marching order rather than a warning. Because “You’ve got to be carefully taught to hate and fear.”

The fear-mongering was similarly expressed only a few weeks ago in the board’s school library policy. Finally, it must be added that the gay movement had deep roots in our area, with New Hope in particular being a safe haven for decades. One would hope that given our community’s laudable toleration heritage, our education officials would move teaching forward not backward.

Steven Miller,  Buckingham

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