Dr Seuss's stepdaughter says he 'didn't have a racist bone in his body' - but defends pulling of six titles because 'the world is in pain'

 One of Dr. Seuss' stepdaughters is speaking out to defend the late author following the announcement that six of his books will no longer be published because they contain racist and insensitive imagery.    

'There wasn't a racist bone in that man's body,' Lark Grey Dimond-Cates told the New York Post of her stepfather, whose real name was Theodor Geisel, on Tuesday. 'He was so acutely aware of the world around him and cared so much.'  

Dimond-Cates said Dr. Seuss Enterprises, the company that preserves and protects the author's legacy, contacted her family on Monday night to inform them that it would stop printing six of his books. 


The books are: 'And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street', 'If I Ran the Zoo', 'McElligot's Pool', 'On Beyond Zebra!', 'Scrambled Eggs Super!', and 'The Cat's Quizzer'. 

Dimond-Cates said she hopes the books will be reintroduced someday but added that she understands why the decision was made. 

'I think in this day and age it's a wise decision,' she said. 'I think this is a world that right now is in pain, and we've all got to be very gentle and thoughtful and kind with each other.' 

Dr. Seuss' stepdaughter Lark Grey Dimond-Cates spoke out to defend the author following the announcement that six of his books will no longer be published because they contain racist and insensitive imagery. Pictured: Dimond-Cates with a sculpture of Dr Suess in 2004

Dr. Seuss' stepdaughter Lark Grey Dimond-Cates spoke out to defend the author following the announcement that six of his books will no longer be published because they contain racist and insensitive imagery. Pictured: Dimond-Cates with a sculpture of Dr Suess in 2004

Dimond-Cates' mother Audrey (left) married Geisel (right) when she was in grade school

Dimond-Cates' mother Audrey (left) married Geisel (right) when she was in grade school

Dimond-Cates, a sculptor from California whose mother Audrey married Geisel when she was in grade school, described the author as a 'sensitive, intelligent, caring man'. 

He was 'a product of his times, as we all are', she said, noting that he had at times revised his illustrations to fit with cultural changes.  

Dimond-Cates said that three of the now-halted titles - 'If I Ran the Zoo', 'McElligot's Pool' and 'Mulberry Street' - were inspired by Geisel's memories of his 'very happy childhood', and brought similar happiness to those who read them.  

'"Mulberry Street" always makes me smile,' she said, recalling how more than 20 publishers declined to publish the book before it was finally picked up.   

'I think the lesson to learn from that book is: "Don't give up,"' she added.   


Dimond-Cates' comments came as the prices of the six discontinued Dr. Seuss books began skyrocketing online following the publisher's announcement.   

A vintage copy of 'If I Ran the Zoo' was priced at $510 after receiving 54 bids, while a copy of 'Scrambled Eggs Super!' was at $565 after 58 bids. 

A copy of 'The Cat's Quizzer', which the seller marketed as brand new, was going for $630 after receiving 48 bids.  

Dimond-Cates created multiple bronze sculptures for the Dr. Seuss National Memorial Sculpture Garden in Springfield, Missouri, including the one shown above

Dimond-Cates created multiple bronze sculptures for the Dr. Seuss National Memorial Sculpture Garden in Springfield, Missouri, including the one shown above

Another one of Dimond-Cates' sculptures, inspired by 'The Grinch', is shown above

Another one of Dimond-Cates' sculptures, inspired by 'The Grinch', is shown above

The prices of six Dr. Seuss children's books began skyrocketing online on Tuesday after it was announced that no further copies will be published

The prices of six Dr. Seuss children's books began skyrocketing online on Tuesday after it was announced that no further copies will be published

Almost immediately after the announcement, the prices of those books surged hundreds of dollars on eBay as people placed dozens of bids for new and vintage copies. A vintage copy of 'If I Ran the Zoo' was priced at $510 after receiving 54 bids

Almost immediately after the announcement, the prices of those books surged hundreds of dollars on eBay as people placed dozens of bids for new and vintage copies. A vintage copy of 'If I Ran the Zoo' was priced at $510 after receiving 54 bids


The move to cease publication of the books drew immediate reaction on social media from those who called it another example of 'cancel culture'.

'We've now got foundations book burning the authors to whom they are dedicated. Well done, everyone,' conservative commentator and author Ben Shapiro tweeted.

Others, however, approved of the decision.

'The books we share with our children matter. Books shape their world view and tell them how to relate to the people, places, and ideas around them. 

'As grown-ups, we have to examine the worldview we are creating for our children, including carefully re-examining our favorites,' Rebekah Fitzsimmons, an assistant teaching professor at Carnegie Mellon University, tweeted. 

Those angry about the decision also directed their fury at President Biden after he omitted Dr. Seuss from Read Across America Day, which is held annually on the children's author's birthday on March 2.  

Biden broke presidential tradition when he left out any mention of Dr. Seuss during his proclamation on Monday. 

Both former presidents Barack Obama and Donald Trump have recognized Dr. Seuss' contributions several times in their proclamations each year. 

Dr. Seuss had been the face of the annual Read Across America day for more than 20 years. 

Explaining the decision to stop the publication of the six books, the company said: 'These books portray people in ways that are hurtful and wrong.'

In 'And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street,' an Asian person is portrayed wearing a conical hat, holding chopsticks, and eating from a bowl. 

'If I Ran the Zoo' includes a drawing of two bare-footed African men wearing what appear to be grass skirts with their hair tied above their heads. 

'Ceasing sales of these books is only part of our commitment and our broader plan to ensure Dr. Seuss Enterprises' catalog represents and supports all communities and families,' the company said.

The decision to cease publication and sales of the books was made last year after months of discussion, the company said. 

'Dr. Seuss Enterprises listened and took feedback from our audiences including teachers, academics and specialists in the field as part of our review process. We then worked with a panel of experts, including educators, to review our catalog of titles.' 

Random House Children Books, Dr. Seuss' publisher, issued a brief statement on Tuesday: 'We respect the decision of Dr. Seuss Enterprises and the work of the panel that reviewed this content last year, and their recommendation.' 

As adored as Dr. Seuss is by millions around the world for the positive values in many of his works, including environmentalism and tolerance, there has been increasing criticism in recent years over the way blacks, Asians and others are drawn in some of his most beloved children's books, as well as in his earlier advertising and propaganda illustrations. 

The National Education Association, which founded Read Across America Day in 1998 and deliberately aligned it with Geisel's birthday, has for several years de-emphasized Seuss and encouraged a more diverse reading list for children. 

School districts across the country have also moved away from Dr. Seuss, prompting Loudoun County, Virginia, schools just outside Washington, D.C., to douse rumors last month that they were banning the books entirely.

'Research in recent years has revealed strong racial undertones in many books written/illustrated by Dr. Seuss,' the school district said in a statement.

In 2017, a school librarian in Cambridge, Massachusetts, criticized a gift of 10 Seuss books from first lady Melania Trump, saying many of his works were 'steeped in racist propaganda, caricatures, and harmful stereotypes.'

In 2018, a Dr. Seuss museum in his hometown of Springfield, Massachusetts, removed a mural that included an Asian stereotype.

'The Cat in the Hat,' one of Seuss' most popular books, has received criticism, too, but will continue to be published for now.

Dr. Seuss Enterprises, however, said it is 'committed to listening and learning and will continue to review our entire portfolio.'  

And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street
If I Ran the Zoo
'The Cat's Quizzer
Scrambled Eggs Super!
McElligot's Pool
On Beyond Zebra!

These six Dr. Seuss books will no longer be published because of racist and insensitive imagery, according to the company that preserves and protects the author's legacy

It comes just one day after President Biden omitted Dr. Seuss from Read Across America Day, which is held annually on the children's author's birthday on March 2
Dr. Seuss Enterprises, the company that preserves and protects Theodor Geisel's (above in 1985) legacy, made the announcement on Tuesday, which coincides with the late author and illustrator's birthday

It comes just one day after President Biden omitted Dr. Seuss from Read Across America Day, which is held annually on the children's author's birthday on March 2

Books by Dr. Seuss, who died in 1991, have been translated into dozens of languages as well as in braille and are sold in more than 100 countries. 

He remains popular, earning an estimated $33 million before taxes in 2020, up from just $9.5 million five years ago, the company said. 

Forbes listed him No. 2 on its highest-paid dead celebrities of 2020, behind only the late pop star Michael Jackson. 

The decision to stop publication of the six books was announced just one day after President Biden broke with tradition and left Dr. Seuss out of the 2021 Read Across America Day proclamation.

The White House has not explained why Dr. Seuss was left out of this year's proclamation.  

Read Across America Day had traditionally featured on Dr. Seuss books including classics like The Cat In The Hat and The Grinch. 

In Obama's 2014 proclamation, he had said: '[Dr Seuss'] tales challenge dictators and discrimination. They call us to open our minds, to take responsibility for ourselves and our planet.' 

In 2015, Obama stated: 'The works of Theodor Seuss Geisel, better known to us as Dr. Seuss, have sparked a love for reading in generations of students. His whimsical wordplay and curious characters inspire children to dream big and remind readers of all ages that 'a person's a person no matter how small.' 

This image appears in the 1937 book 'And To Think I Saw It On Mulberry Street', which shows an illustration of a 'Chinaman who eats with sticks' - a caricatured picture of an Asian man with slits for eyes carrying a bowl of rice

This image appears in the 1937 book 'And To Think I Saw It On Mulberry Street', which shows an illustration of a 'Chinaman who eats with sticks' - a caricatured picture of an Asian man with slits for eyes carrying a bowl of rice 

'If I Ran the Zoo', which was published in 1950, includes a drawing of two bare-footed African men wearing what appear to be grass skirts with their hair tied above their heads

'If I Ran the Zoo', which was published in 1950, includes a drawing of two bare-footed African men wearing what appear to be grass skirts with their hair tied above their heads 

The following year, Obama said in 2016 that Seuss was 'one of America's revered wordsmiths' who 'used his incredible talent to instill in his most impressionable readers universal values we all hold dear.' 

Former first lady Melania Trump celebrated Read Across America Day in 2017 by reading Dr. Seuss books to hospitalized children. 

'Dr. Seuss has brought so much joy, laughter and enchantment into children's lives all around the globe for generations,' Melania said at the time.

'Through his captivating rhymes, Dr. Seuss has delighted and inspired children while teaching them to read, to dream, and to care.' 

Trump, in his 2018 proclamation, urged Americans to 'always remember the still-vibrant words of Dr. Seuss: 'You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose.' 

Trump also referred to Dr. Seuss in his 2019 proclamation. 

Numerous other popular children's series have also been criticized in recent years for alleged racism.

In the 2007 book, 'Should We Burn Babar?,' the author and educator Herbert R. Kohl contended that the 'Babar the Elephant' books were celebrations of colonialism because of how the title character leaves the jungle and later returns to 'civilize' his fellow animals.

One of the books, 'Babar's Travels', was removed from the shelves of a British library in 2012 because of its alleged stereotypes of Africans. Critics also have faulted the 'Curious George' books for their premise of a white man bringing home a monkey from Africa.

And Laura Ingalls Wilder's portrayals of Native Americans in her 'Little House On the Prairie' novels have been faulted so often that the American Library Association removed her name in 2018 from a lifetime achievement award it gives out each year.  

There has been increasing criticism in recent years over the way blacks, Asians and others are drawn in some of Theodor Geisel's most beloved children's books, as well as in his earlier advertising and propaganda illustrations

There has been increasing criticism in recent years over the way blacks, Asians and others are drawn in some of Theodor Geisel's most beloved children's books, as well as in his earlier advertising and propaganda illustrations 

Presidents Clinton, Obama and Trump have all mentioned Dr. Seuss in conjunction with Read Across America Day, which is designed to encourage school children to read more. The Obamas are pictured in April 2010

Presidents Clinton, Obama and Trump have all mentioned Dr. Seuss in conjunction with Read Across America Day, which is designed to encourage school children to read more. The Obamas are pictured in April 2010

In 2017, a school librarian in Cambridge, Massachusetts, criticized a gift of 10 Seuss books from first lady Melania Trump, saying many of his works were 'steeped in racist propaganda, caricatures, and harmful stereotypes.'

In 2017, a school librarian in Cambridge, Massachusetts, criticized a gift of 10 Seuss books from first lady Melania Trump, saying many of his works were 'steeped in racist propaganda, caricatures, and harmful stereotypes.'


Dr Seuss's stepdaughter says he 'didn't have a racist bone in his body' - but defends pulling of six titles because 'the world is in pain' Dr Seuss's stepdaughter says he 'didn't have a racist bone in his body' - but defends pulling of six titles because 'the world is in pain' Reviewed by STATION GOSSIP on 07:23 Rating: 5

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