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Weekly Editorial Recap

WEDNESDAY

ALL THE WORLD’s A STAGE

Some parents of students at Green Valley High School in Henderson are seeking a preliminary injunction in District Court that would cancel scheduled performances of the plays “Rent” and “The Laramie Project” — two plays with homosexual characters and the theme of tolerance.

They argue that since they object to their children participating in plays with adult content, their own kids are essentially excluded from participation in the school’s theater program. …

The issue is important, demonstrating that — even in their somewhat watered-down, “high school” versions — such dramas can still evoke emotion and stir controversy.

That’s precisely what drama (as opposed to silly skits involving mustachioed villains shouting “But you must pay the rent!”) is supposed to do.

The parents in question are not wrong — far from it — to be concerned about their children being exposed to such themes at what they may feel to be too early an age, either as participants or as viewers. In fact, their concern is far more laudable than if they had merely assumed “The school must know what it’s doing,” without checking for themselves.

But the parents are wrong in their attempt to block the plays from being performed by those who have parental permission to do so, and viewed by students or members of the community on a completely voluntary basis, without pressure or penalty to those who remain perfectly free to simply stay away.

Yes, it would be nice if each school’s theater season included at least one light comedy for those of different tastes. But is that a matter to be imposed by the courts, or anyone else outside the school itself? …

Shall judges or legislators now pore over high-school scripts, approving in advance a few “acceptably” bland offerings after debating how many “gosh darns” shall be permitted in each act? When the kids thus being “protected” can view stuff ten times as strong at home any night on television? Why would anyone bother, at that point? … Let the plays go on.

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