Antiabortion activists hijack "Horton"

Right-to-lifers find their motto in "A person's a person, no matter how small."

By Sarah Hepola
Published March 17, 2008 1:45PM (EDT)

Slate has a report on antiabortion activists crashing a "Horton Hears a Who!" premiere last week.

"We could not understand what was being shouted and thought perhaps that Seth Rogen or one of the other many vocal talents in the film was expressing love for Dr. Seuss' elephant and his signature line. But as you may have read elsewhere, anti-abortion activists had infiltrated the theater."

Hmm. Not such a successful protest when your first thoughts are, "That crafty Seth Rogen's at it again." The animated film, based on the Dr. Seuss classic, is by most accounts a charming family film, and the movie debuted at No. 1. But the pro-life movement has taken up one famous line as its rallying cry: "A person's a person, no matter how small." According to a story on AlterNet, "The line has snowballed and is now a de facto motto for the anti-abortion movement. Just google the line: some pro-life sites show up above Dr. Seuss."

Dr. Seuss' widow, Audrey Geisel -- probably still reeling from the insult of "Cat in the Hat" -- is not pleased. According to an NPR report, "She doesn't like people to hijack Dr. Seuss characters or material to front their own points of view." Especially, we might add, nut jobs who place red tape over their mouths, mumble stuff and stage a protest in the company of such influential political figures as little kids and Victoria Beckham.

Sarah Hepola

Sarah Hepola is the author of the New York Times bestselling memoir, "Blackout: Remembering the Things I Drank to Forget."

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