Saturday, October 3, 2009

Banned Books Week 2009--the Conclusion

Today is the last day of Banned Books Week 2009, but the fight against censorship never ends.  It's an ongoing battle.  So you may ask yourself what you can do throughout the year to continue the fight.

  Know what books are being challenged/banned in the United States...and beyond.  Pay attention to the news and visit the American Library Association banned books section online and read all the lists of the top most challenged books from this year and years past.

Speak out about challenged/banned books.  Tell your friends and family about books that are on the lists.  If you read a book and review it on your blog that is on the list, mention it in your review.  Many people would be surprised about some of the books that are challenged in this country.

Read books from the challenged/banned lists.  Whether it's one a month, quarterly, every six months...just read them! With such a wide variety of books listed (unfortunately), many would fit in on any reading challenges you may be participating in at the moment.  Also, let your kids read books from the list (within the parental constraints you are comfortable with) and then discuss with them the reasons for the proposed ban on that book.

We certainly do not want to go back to the practices of the Dark Ages in which wholesale book burning and the destruction of libraries and schools were common place.  We must hold precious the freedoms given us by our founding fathers in the First Amendment of the Constitution.  To do this, we cannot stand idle and allow censorship to take free rein in our country.

Restriction of free thought and free speech is the most dangerous of all subversions. It is the one un-American act that could most easily defeat us.

~Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas ("The One Un-American Act." Nieman Reports, vol. 7, no. 1, Jan. 1953, p. 20)

Exercise your FREEDOM to read!


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  1. One of my concerns with banned books is that sometimes we don't even know that a ban somewhere has effected us. I'm sure there are teachers in my kids' high school that just don't put certain books on the reading lists to avoid controversy. It's hard to fight back against something that hasn't happened--I can't very well approach a teacher and say "are you censoring."

  2. Another great post. I have become more aware this week to banned books and I really had no idea... some of favs are on that list.

  3. It is a neverending battle—fighting to maintain the hardwon freedoms we have enjoyed—and we can never let up.

  4. Inspiring!! This was a eye-opening week for me that is for sure.
    By the way, I have something for you:

  5. This is excellent advice. I know I am often shocked by the books that people try to have banned.

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