Merriam Webster Dictionary Pulled From Elementary School For Defining Oral Sex; Guess What All The Students Just Found Out About?

from the yeah-good-work,-parents dept

Pickle Monger points us to yet another story of overreaction that will clearly backfire in a misguided attempt to "protect the children!" Apparently a parent of a student at Oak Meadows Elementary school in Riverside, California got very upset when she discovered that the schools had copies of the collegiate level Merriam-Websters Dictionary which (gasp!) contained a definition of the phrase "oral sex." Because of that the dictionary was removed from classrooms and a committee was formed to "investigate." Thankfully, the committee concluded that the original dictionary was fine and should be returned to the classroom, but that an alternative dictionary will be provided as well.

Of course, many other parents at the school pointed out how ridiculous it was that the dictionaries were removed in the first place. It's not as if kids will never hear a phrase like that and seek out an answer somewhere. Would parents really prefer that the kids go to Google and do a search on "oral sex," or go to a dictionary instead? Furthermore, this is a definite "Streisand Effect" situation. Now that this story has made the press, you have to imagine that a significantly higher number of elementary school students at Oak Meadows have now heard the term "oral sex" and figured out what it meant.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 2:15pm

    I used to think all the Puritans were long dead.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2.  
    icon
    dwind (profile), Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 2:20pm

    Schools still have hard cover dictionary's?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Poster, Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 2:21pm

    Re:

    No, they survived by taking on the appearance of normal, free-thinking people.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 2:22pm

    Also, we're forgetting the real tragedy: The child whose mother is a moron (and has ruined at least part of his school life).

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5.  
    icon
    Alan Gerow (profile), Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 2:23pm

    Re:

    You'd be amazed at how much society has advanced in the past 15 years, but schools are remarkably the same.

    Except for the metal detectors. And armed paramilitary. And drug & bomb sniffing dogs. And random searches.

    But paper dictionaries, blackboards, flags with 48 stars, history books that refer to it as "The Great War" ... those are all still there.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  6.  
    icon
    Robert Ring (profile), Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 2:27pm

    Similar story

    A high school teacher of mine once told us that years before us, when he first began teaching at the school, there was a history book the school was using, and in one silly chapter introduction or something like that, there was the word "damn" (used, I believe, in a quote). Of course, no kid is going to go actively read a non-assigned portion of any textbook (much less a history textbook), but nonetheless, the school required all students in that class to give the teacher their book so that he could tear out the offending page and return the book to them. Naturally, every kid suddenly wanted to go read that page before having it torn out.

    Plus ... over "damn"?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7.  
    icon
    dwind (profile), Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 2:27pm

    I've been away from schools too long.
    Sigh

     

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  8.  
    icon
    aguywhoneedstenbucks (profile), Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 2:31pm

    Re: Re:

    The Civil Rights Movement: Trouble Ahead

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  9.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 2:34pm

    Re: Similar story

    In one of my middle school "Reading" class (yes, there was an entire class just for reading), we read a book that happened to contain a chapter that had about 2-3 paragraphs describing animals reproducing (on a farm). Our teacher said something like "Skip chapter ## because it has inappropriate content!"

    So, naturally, everyone read it (and were just as bored as during the rest of the terrible book).

     

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  10.  
    icon
    Esahc (profile), Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 2:35pm

    Google

    "go to Google and do a search on "oral sex,""

    And that is why dictionary are still useful.

     

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  11.  
    icon
    Dark Helmet (profile), Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 2:36pm

    Question

    Did the dictionary also happen to include the definition of the word "is"? If so, we could always repurpose it for use in the Clinton Library....

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  12.  
    icon
    aguywhoneedstenbucks (profile), Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 2:37pm

    Darn Kids

    I agree with removing the dictionary. They should figure it out the old fashioned way like we had to. It was more fun that way.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  13.  
    icon
    sehlat (profile), Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 2:44pm

    What's the fuss about?

    People talk about sex all the time. Isn't that oral sex?

     

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  14.  
    icon
    Dark Helmet (profile), Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 2:45pm

    Re: Darn Kids

    "I agree with removing the dictionary. They should figure it out the old fashioned way like we had to. It was more fun that way."

    Spoken like someone who never went to Catholic School....

    /sarcasm

     

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  15.  
    icon
    IshmaelDS (profile), Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 2:47pm

    Re: Google

    Actually if you do that the first link is the link to Wikipedia article about oral sex. :P Google Search for Oral Sex

     

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  16.  
    icon
    Pickle Monger (profile), Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 2:50pm

    Re: Question

    Good one DH. Long live sarcasm!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  17.  
    icon
    Esahc (profile), Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 2:50pm

    Re: Re: Google

    My fault for assuming as I didn't want to search "Oral Sex" while at work.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  18.  
    icon
    Dark Helmet (profile), Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 2:50pm

    Re: Re: Google

    ":P"

    I can't think of a more appropriate emoticon for a story involving oral sex....

    Other than maybe :0

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  19.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 2:53pm

    Merriam Webster Dictionary Pulled From Elementary School For Defining Oral Sex; Guess What All The Students Just Found Out About?

    Did they find out about a new line of hats coming soon from the No Reason To Buy experiment?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  20.  
    icon
    IshmaelDS (profile), Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 3:09pm

    Re: Re: Re: Google

    Luckily I'm the network admin at my work so I have to police myself when doing search's at work.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  21.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 3:09pm

    Re: Re: Similar story

    classes*

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  22.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 3:12pm

    :O

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  23.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 3:13pm

    bunch of phonies

    Yet nobody legalises drugs.
    Think of the children, drug dealers have no interest in asking for ID's.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  24.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 3:20pm

    I think I read about one of these so called "books" recently. From my understanding "books" were used for reading some years back...

     

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  25.  
    identicon
    Yakko Warner, Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 3:26pm

    Re: Re: Re: Google

    I'll never be able to look at those emoticons in the same way again.

    *resisting the urge to stick my tongue out at you*

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  26.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 3:27pm

    Re: Re: Re: Google

    :o

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  27.  
    identicon
    Spanky, Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 3:39pm

    Question

    So what's it mean?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  28.  
    icon
    taoareyou (profile), Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 3:44pm

    Re: Re:

    The school my daughter goes to still teaches kids how to use the card catalog in the library.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  29.  
    identicon
    Ben, Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 3:47pm

    Books are for..

    Burning! ;-)...

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  30.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 3:47pm

    Re: Question

    Ask The Anti-Mike. He's a good stand-in for an elementary student.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  31.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 4:05pm

    I have to ask ...... why was the mother looking for a definition for oral sex in the first place?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  32.  
    identicon
    ChimpBush McHitlerBurton, Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 4:12pm

    Re: Porno Parents

    I don't know which bothers me more: The idea that a school would make such a lousy decision to remove a fucking dictionary from the library, or the idea that some kid's parent is lurking in the school library looking up "oral sex" in the dictionary...

    ...Oh wait, come to think of it, I DO know which bothers me more.

    Cweepy.

    CBMHB

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  33.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 4:20pm

    and better yet .... i bet she is a member of some religion.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  34.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 4:20pm

    and better yet .... i bet she is a member of some religion.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  35.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 4:32pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Google

    :()

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  36.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 4:52pm

    Re: Books are for..

    Some books are great kindling for burning book burners.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  37.  
    identicon
    PAF56, Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 5:11pm

    Teach about it YES, but have the word in the dictionary??

    I seems that in a whole bunch of Liberal run Grade Schools and even pre-school and kindergarten, that 'anything goes' as far as being outside the NORMAL bounds of School and training the children.
    In those schools (nay, Liberal/homosexual indoctrination centers for children) GAY sex is taught among other things such as fisting, Islam, Witchcraft etc. but never anything to do with Christianity.
    In those brainwashing academies they have given the terms "Liberal Education" and "Liberal Arts Education" a whole new meaning.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  38.  
    icon
    wizened (profile), Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 5:12pm

    Re: I used to think all the Puritans were long dead.

    Are you kidding. There are at least 52 million of them at last count. At least if you consider the voting records and returns. (I'm only partly kidding but still kidding.)

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  39.  
    icon
    wizened (profile), Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 5:17pm

    They're burning the wrong books

    If "they" really want to get rid of a book with a lot of inappropriate sexual content "they" really need to collect the Christian Bible. That thing is full of violence, sex of every description, incest and a whole lot of things that "they" say is "shocking". To protect the children, I think we need to start a movement to remove this vile book from all public spaces and libraries. It's for the children. No. Really it is.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  40.  
    identicon
    john, Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 5:23pm

    Re: Re: Re: Google

    :o~>

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  41.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 5:43pm

    Re: Teach about it YES, but have the word in the dictionary??

    I honestly cannot tell whether you're insane, stupid, and wearing a malfunctioning tinfoil hat or a brilliant satirist.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  42.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 6:00pm

    Your Mom's a nut ! Haha

    How embarassing for the kids.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  43.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 7:13pm

    :-0

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  44.  
    identicon
    e100, Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 8:05pm

    Oral Sex:

    :-}====8

    I'm not that creative, found that here:
    http://www.astro.umd.edu/~marshall/smileys.html

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  45.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 10:20pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Google

    :*

    :O

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  46.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 10:22pm

    This is exactly why Bill Clinton needed someone to define the word 'sex'. How are we going to better educate the next generation of presidents if we take away more complete books?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  47.  
    icon
    Mr RC (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 12:29am

    :-P(())

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  48.  
    icon
    ethorad (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 4:45am

    Re: What's the fuss about?

    That's what I thought when I was younger. Wish someone had pointed out to me that I could check it in the dictionary!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  49.  
    icon
    Liquid (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 5:47am

    Re: They're burning the wrong books

    Yeah but anything that was written in the name of the good lord is ok.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  50.  
    identicon
    Rekrul, Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 8:57am

    The linked story says that the dictionary contained the "term" and definition for "oral sex". I'm guessing that "oral sex" wasn't the term that set them off. More likely it was either "cunnilingus" or "fellatio".

    Now if it had a definition for "gerbiling" or "bukkake", I might agree that it was inappropriate for younger students. :)

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  51.  
    icon
    kevjohn (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 9:06am

    Re: Teach about it YES, but have the word in the dictionary??

    HAR HAR! Kudos to you, sir. Your post made me giggle uncotrollably like a gay schoolboy. This was just the shot of humor I needed to get me through a boring morning at work. I do apprecia... Wait, you were serious?!?

    ....BWAHAHA.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  52.  
    icon
    nasch (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 11:44am

    Re: Teach about it YES, but have the word in the dictionary??

    I like how he put Islam in the same category as gay sex, fisting and witchcraft with regard to appropriateness of teaching elementary students.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  53.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 6:16pm

    mormons...

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  54.  
    icon
    PaulT (profile), Feb 4th, 2010 @ 12:46am

    Re: Re: Google

    ...and the second is a page giving instructions on how to do it properly :D

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  55.  
    identicon
    Enrico Suarve, Feb 4th, 2010 @ 5:43am

    Re:

    Wasn't fellatio the guy Romeo killed?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  56.  
    icon
    Chucklebutte (profile), Feb 6th, 2010 @ 1:58am

    ...

    SKEET SKEET SKEET!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  57.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 9th, 2010 @ 5:41am

    Re: Teach about it YES, but have the word in the dictionary??

    Troll detected.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  58.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 18th, 2010 @ 12:42am

    Re:

    lol

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  59.  
    identicon
    Irina, Feb 18th, 2010 @ 12:45am

    Re:

    I somehow go to this site from the urban dictionary...
    Ironic.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  60.  
    identicon
    Lafawnduh, Feb 20th, 2010 @ 6:16pm

    people are retarded

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  61.  
    identicon
    MrsFun, Mar 15th, 2010 @ 11:05pm

    Re: Re:

    And Social Studies texts that refer to the Civil Rights movement as "trouble on the horizon."

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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