Florida teachers toss Shakespeare books from classes, citing fascist Ron DeSantis law

Q: Wherefore art thou Romeo? A: Anywhere but Florida!

Because teachers in the Sunshine State are now pulling Shakespeare books out of their curricula before the new school year starts, citing "raunchiness" as the reason.

Fearing Gov. Ron DeSantis' extended "Don't Say Gay" law that now includes anything that even hints at sexuality and that, if broken, could be considered a third-degree felony, English teachers in Hillsborough County aren't taking any chances. Instead of asking students to expand their minds with classics such as MacBeth, Hamlet, and Romeo and Juliet, they will understandably go the small-minded DeSantis route and offer only excerpts.

"I think the rest of the nation — no, the world, is laughing us," said Joseph Cool, a reading teacher in the district, via Tampa Bay Times. "Taking Shakespeare in its entirety out because the relationship between Romeo and Juliet is somehow exploiting minors is just absurd."

From Tampa Bay Times:

"There's some raunchiness in Shakespeare," said Joseph Cool, a reading teacher at Gaither High School. "Because that's what sold tickets during his time." …

But teachers are advised, during class lessons, to stay with the approved guidelines, which call for excerpts. If not, in extreme circumstances, they might have to defend themselves against a parent complaint or a disciplinary case at their school.

Cool said he enjoyed teaching "Macbeth" last year to his 10th grade students.

"It gave them a sense of connection between stuff that happened in the past and things that are not necessarily in the past," he said. "The choices that we make, power struggles, delusions of grandeur. It is so rich in content and things that you can have discussions about, academic and scholarly discussions."

When asked if students could have that caliber of experience through excerpts, he said, "absolutely not."

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