I recently stumbled on a book with a rather horrendous title. The book is “I Wish My Kids Had Cancer: A Family Surviving The Autism Epidemic.” Michael Alan, the book’s author, apparently has two children with autism and the tome “intimately, honestly, and powerfully, addresses the emotional, social, financial, political and medical aspects of a family fighting for their very existence.”
The title is tone deaf. The premise is idiotic. This twelve-year-old book’s been bashed so many times that addressing it further would be like beating a dead horse until the corpse squeaks. I am not concerned with the book or its substance, however.
What intrigues me about this book is the profound outrage the title alone sustains so many years after the publication. Many slam the book, professing they will never read it, yet the longevity of Alan’s book speaks volumes about what one can do with a tone-deaf, asinine book title.
Maybe we could culturally appropriate some tone-deaf, outrage-provoking book titles to help raise awareness to criminal justice issues? Here are a few suggestions to start the conversation.
“Your Baby’s Getting Shanked: A Family’s Struggle To Raise Bail Money For A Pot Offense.”
“Surprise, You’re A Rapist! A Young Man’s Guide To College In A Title IX World.”
“Jimmy’s Getting Probation While Kwame Gets Four Days In Lockup.”
“Ten Violent Felons Released: Orleans Parish And The Struggle For Gideon.”
“Bite Marks, Bedknobs, Broomsticks, And Other Junk Science Jailing Innocent People.”
“Credibly Accused: Justifying Revisiting Every Male Indiscretion Every Day.”
“Only Guilty People Refuse To Testify.”
“But DNA Said He Did It: Why That Rat Bastard Deserves Life Despite The Mountain Of Exculpatory Evidence.”
“Hey Siri, What’s The Presumption Of Innocence?”
“Life Plus Cancer Is Better Than The Needle.”
“Why Sex Offender Registries Need App Store Clearance.”
“Eliminating Batson Challenges In Our Color-Blind System.”
“No Trial, But I Only Spent Four Days In County: Why Plea Deals Are A Must.”
And that’s just a start. We’re on our way to turning Michael Alan’s blunder into a tool for good. Got your own suggestions for book titles? Let’s see them in the comments.