The Lorax & The Environmental Message
By: Jathynia Garcia
“Your Plumber in a Skirt”
Who doesn’t love Dr. Seuss & his magical books of rhythm & rhyme. They are engaging for children & adults as well as enticing with their colorful eye-catching illustrations. But have we thought about the deeper meaning behind the stories such as the powerful message about the environment in The Lorax Movie (produced by Universal Studios)? The film topped the North American box office with $17.53 million on its opening day (Friday, March 2, 2012).
In a nutshell, The Lorax (the current 2012 movie) is about a 12-year-old boy who searches for the one thing that will enable him to win the affection of the girl of his dreams. To find it he must discover the story of the Lorax, the grumpy yet charming creature who fights to protect his world. At the end of the story, what began as Ted’s desire to impress Audrey becomes an inspiration by the Once-ler’s gift of the last Truffula Seed to plant it to remind his town of the importance of nature. It’s a fun-filled movie with an enviromentally sustainable message for our youth and for ourselves.
Originally when the book was written in 1971 it was during a time when the U.S. was dealing with the backlash of the 1960’s environmental movement. Most notably, trees in the Pacific Northwest were being cut down at an alarming rate by logging companies. So you can imagine how unhappy these companies were to hear that good old Dr. Seuss had written a story about deforestation. In fact, a lot of people were upset about The Lorax.
Here are a few interesting facts about it (thanks to greenopolis.com):
1. It was banned in some schools and libraries that have timber-rich industries.
2. In 1989 the Laytonville, CA Unified School District tried to ban the book because they said it criminalizes the foresting industry.
3. Several timber industry groups sponsored the creation of a book called The Truax in rebuttal to the book. It was written to help kids understand the importance of harvesting trees.
4. The line, “I hear things are just as bad up in Lake Erie” was removed more than fourteen years after the story was published after two research associates from the Ohio Sea Grant Program wrote to Seuss about the clean-up of Lake Erie.
Okay, I understand why the logging industry was upset about the book, but to the point where they banned it was a little excessive. It’s a great Dr. Seuss story & makes us aware of our environment & the ecological factors that occur from cutting down trees! In my opinion The Lorax should be required reading for all children in school. When you look beyond the rhymes and the pretty pictures you realize that the story teaches children about conservation, respect for the environment and love of all living creatures. That’s something that every human being, regardless of age, should consider.http://hi-techplumbing.com/Going-Green.htm
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