A concerned mother has divided opinion in the online community by questioning whether she should ask for some offensive dialogue to be removed from her son’s school production of Bugsy Malone.
The mother posted the question on Mumsnet after she saw the script for her son’s role in the play.
“DS [Darling Son] is playing the part of Smolsky in the school production of Bugsy Malone and has some lines to learn. Some of them are:
‘You Irish potato head!’
‘You dumb potato face Irish jerk!’
‘I’m going to punch that stupid Irish nose right back to Tipperary’
“Would it be unreasonable to suggest to the school that these lines could be construed as offensive and should be tweaked?”
The response was mixed with some parents suggesting the mother is being oversensitive, and that the script of the classic play should not be changed.
She was warned not to become ‘that parent’ by one commentator, while another told her she was being ‘a bit snowflakey’.
Bugsy Malone is set in New York during the period of Prohibition. The story follows the lives of gangsters in the criminal and boxing underworld, and there are several violent scenes in the play.
This led some people to suggest that the insulting language would be just the tip of the iceberg if the play was to be censored.
However, there were some comments of support for the mother. One comment did not agree the mother should request the lines be changed, but instead use it as an opportunity to teach her child.
They posted: “Nope. Your job as a parent is to tell your child that you should never use those words IRL [in real life], because they are hurtful, and that fictional characters sometimes say nasty things because their character is not very nice. Because it’s fiction. Use it as a teaching moment.”
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