The Miami-Dade County’s mayor has invited poet Amanda Gorman to visit for a reading after a parental complaint about her 2021 poem.
Today (May 24), CNN reported the parent of a student who goes to Bob Graham Education Center (kindergarten – eighth grade) objected to Gorman’s “The Hill We Climb” poem. The poetic piece became known globally after the California native performed it at President Joe Biden‘s inauguration.
However, a Florida parent claimed the poem “is not educational and have (sic) indirectly hate messages.” The complaint suggested it would “cause confusion and indoctrinate students.” On Wednesday, the outlet noted the same parent previously complained about other books. That included “Love to Langston,” a poetry biography of the Black poet Langston Hughes; “The ABCs of Black History” and a pair of books about Cuba.
Later, Gorman took to social media, criticizing the panel’s decision. “Robbing children of the chance to find their voices in literature is a violation of their right to free thought and free speech,” she wrote.
— Amanda Gorman (@TheAmandaGorman) May 23, 2023
After a materials-review panel examined the complaint, they decided not to remove the poem from the school entirely. Instead, the institution moved it to the library’s middle school section with two other books. On Tuesday (May 23), the county’s public school spokesperson clarified the panel’s decision. “No literature (books or poems) has been banned or removed. It was determined at the school that ‘The Hill We Climb’ is better suited for middle school students,” Elmo Lugo said.
After learning of the situation, Daniella Cava, the county’s mayor, invited Gorman to come and read her famous poem. “Your poem inspired our youth to become active participants in their government,” she tweeted. “And to help shape the future. We want you to come to Miami-Dade to do a reading of your poem. If you’re in, we will coordinate.”
.@TheAmandaGorman, your poem inspired our youth to become active participants in their government and to help shape the future. We want you to come to Miami-Dade to do a reading of your poem. If you’re in, we will coordinate. https://t.co/9cpX2Zvkrk
— Daniella Levine Cava (@LevineCava) May 24, 2023
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