I Read Banned Books, Banned Books Week, Blonde Seeking Ambition, Banned Books, Censorship, First Amendment, Freedom of Press

I Read Banned Books. You Should Too.

September 27, 2016 5 Comments

I vividly remember the day my mother took me to get my first library card. We went into the children’s section, two rooms I can still picture clear as day. The librarian went to issue me a child’s card (one that would only allow me to take out materials from the children’s rooms) and my mother stopped her – Mom wanted me to have access to the whole library.

5-year-old me didn’t run off and read Lady Chatterley’s Lover or anything¹, but I was always encouraged to and never prevented from reading whatever I wanted.

This is Banned Books Week, and now more than ever, I’m grateful that I grew up in a country that supports both the freedom of speech and the press. However, despite the First Amendment, censorship is unfortunately alive and quite well, thankyouverymuch. And no matter how badly we think we have it here in the United States, it is far, far worse in many other countries around the globe. PEN America’s site provides a searchable database of countries where writers are being persecuted (or worse) for expressing themselves.

Who’s bitching about books here at home?

who challenges books, Banned Books Week, banned books, Blonde Seeking Ambition

artwork courtesy of the American Library Association

I’m willing to bet the other 7% is comprised of people like My Asshole Neighbor, That Guy Who Doesn’t Wash His Hands In The Work Bathroom, and That Lady Who Almost Ran You Over In Her Giant Hurry To Pull Out Of The Parking Lot And Into Traffic.

Surprisingly, Buzz Killington isn’t just a parent trying to protect his special snowflake from something at school. Public libraries are the number one source of challenged books. This can be somewhat dangerous, as library directors have wide latitude over which books to include in their collections.

Where are books challenged, Banned Books Week, banned books, Blonde Seeking Ambition

artwork courtesy of the American Library Association

And just what, pray tell, are they bitching about? Well, everything:

why are books challenged, Banned Books Week, banned books, Blonde Seeking Ambition

artwork courtesy of the American Library Association

“Racist to whites”…  “liberal propaganda”… “confuses children”…

Stop the world. I want to get off.

This week, I’ll be bringing you posts that focus on specific banned books and the overarching reason why they are in Big Trouble.

Keep on reading this week – you’ll laugh, you’ll roll your eyes, you’ll wonder what the hell is wrong with your fellow man. And stand up for your First Amendment rights – read a banned book!

¹ To be totally honest, I didn’t read Lady Chatterley’s Lover until I was in my late twenties. But it was actually really good!

5 Comments

  1. Reply

    Robin McMahon

    September 27, 2016

    I love to read, but I never know where to look for a list of great books to try. Thanks for a bit of inspiration, I’ll be headed to the library today!

    • Reply

      Caitlin

      September 27, 2016

      You can’t go wrong with the “troublemakers”, Robin… if everyone is talking about them, they must be doing something right! 😉

      Thanks so much for reading!

  2. Reply

    KIm

    September 27, 2016

    This book nerd loves this post! I can’t wait to get my hands on some good books.

    • Reply

      Caitlin

      September 28, 2016

      Fellow book nerd right here… you’re in good company!!!

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