Ottawa — At an anti-abortion rally last week, Niagara West MPP Sam Oosterhoff invoked beloved children’s author Dr. Seuss to back up his point that abortion is inherently wrong and that it should be outlawed “within our lifetime.”
“To quote Dr. Seuss, ‘A person’s a person no matter how small,'” said the 21-year-old Conservative, who added that he’s been delving deep into Horton Hears a Who! on Friday nights as his more sinful peers are out socializing.
Because many pro-lifers haven’t progressed in their reading beyond kids’ books, we at The Manatee figure we can do the dirty work for them of removing all context from quotations and linking them to serious issues — in this case, rhyming verses and abortion.
So, here’s a list of lines from Dr. Seuss that, if you’re determined enough, really sound like they mean women’s choices about their own bodies are irrelevant. You’re welcome.
- “And the turtles, of course…all the turtles are free, as turtles and, maybe, all creatures should be.” This line from Yertle the Turtle and Other Stories obviously points to the fact that fetuses, like turtles, should be free and allowed to develop to maturity and delivered into the world, whether the mother is able to provide for it or not.
- “It’s opener, out there, in the wide, open air.” Oh, The Places You’ll Go! isn’t just for graduations anymore. If you really think about it, it seems like this line is actually talking about a fertilized egg and its voyage through the female reproductive system, eventually ending up in the wide open air of the world.
- “Oh, the thinks you can think!” Do you know who can’t think? Aborted babies. Enough said. Dr. Seuss really nailed it in his classic pro-life manifesto Oh, the Thinks You Can Think! Or at least, that’s how we’re choosing to read it.
- “It’s fun to have fun but you have to know how.” It’s clear that Dr. Seuss, in The Cat in the Hat, was talking about casual sex and how, if you don’t use proper contraception, it’s not so much fun anymore and can result in unwanted pregnancy. The “hat” in this case is a condom. It’s not that much of a stretch, really. Humour us.
- “One fish Two fish Red fish Blue fish!” This one doesn’t take a rocket scientist: Fish. Swimmers. Sperm. It plainly all points to Dr. Seuss’s decrying the outcome of the famous 1973 Roe v. Wade Supreme Court case. Duh.
- “I speak for the trees, for the trees have no tongues.” Some scholars have misread The Lorax to be about environmental protection. But as anti-choice activists, we know that “trees” in this book represent fetuses, and the notion that we need to speak for them and allow them to be born into the world, even if that world has gone to shit because of overpopulation.
As you can see, Mr. Oosterhoff isn’t the only one who can use kids’ books to serve his purposes. Next time, The Manatee will attempt to connect random sections of the Harry Potter series with the fracking debate.