The belief in the right to freedom of speech is one that we hold dear in the U.S. Despite a guarantee by our Constitution that we can enjoy this right on a daily basis, many seek to restrict the freedom of speech through words.
Each year, communities challenge and ban books from schools and local libraries, arguing that certain books are too sexually explicit, racist, have alternate religious views or use “objectionable” words. Some books have been banned for more than 5o years and new ones are added to the list each year. Do you believe that a community, a school board or the government has the right to determine what children read in school and in their libraries? Just because they believe being exposed to a different world or way of thinking is a threat, does that mean everyone else should live in that fear?
September 24 – October 1 marks Banned Books Week, a celebration of the Freadom for anyone to read any book they choose. The books being celebrated during this week have been targets of attempted bannings. Some books have been banned or restricted, while others were saved from the banned list through the work of librarians, teachers, book sellers and members of the community.