Thursday, September 9, 2010

Think About It Thursday (8): Book Banning

Image used under Creative Commons - Original belongs to Salady
Let's talk book banning...

It’s something that seems like it should be a thing of the past, what with American society being more and more open to everything. Yet, book banning still happens. Every year books are challenged and some are banned all over the US. As someone participating in Ban This! I think it’s clear where my feelings on the subject lay.

Book banning is ridiculous, ludicrous, and any other synonymous term that ends in ous. We are supposed to be an accepting and open society, yet there are still those who would restrict and censor reading, half the time without actually reading the books they are challenging themselves, because there’s a line or a theme that doesn’t fit their values! It’s crazy. If you don’t like what a book is about, then don’t read it. Don’t try to stop others from reading it because you don’t like it. I’m perfectly accepting of the fact that many individuals and parents won’t want their children to be exposed to certain themes in books, but I believe that censorship should be on an individual basis, not imposed on entire communities.

Anyway, I figured I’d give everyone a little rundown on what it means for a book to be challenged or banned.

Challenged: An individual or group has attempted to remove a book from circulation (from schools, libraries, etc.)

Banned: When that individual or group successfully has a book removed from circulation

Challenges are often investigated and then decided by school boards, committees, and those in charge of materials put into circulation.

So what are your opinions on book banning? Do you ever think it’s a good idea or that there should be more censorship in schools and such? Should certain books require parental/guardian permission before being taught in schools?

I’d love to see what everyone thinks, but on the off-chance that pro-book banners comment, let’s keep it civil. All opinions are welcome and no viewpoint can ever really be the wrong.

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