Every single week, we hear about various book bans – and some libraries and bookstores are trying to fight back. Now, even literary personalities are fighting back in any way that they can.
Banned Books Week is happening the first week of October. As the date draws close, you’ll find that there are quite a few restricted books out there. So, readers and educators are working to explore those books and support the authors of those books.
The reality is that it’s not even just classics that are being banned. Sometimes, it’s simply because of the subject matter, ranging from politics to race to LGBTQ+ themes.
LeVar Burton helped to make reading cool in the 1980s with his PBS show “Reading Rainbow.” Now, he makes the comment that “read the books they’re banning. That’s where the good stuff is.”
Literacy groups have been clinging to Burton’s words to ensure that we’re not banning books. This is 2022 after all.
Burton went onto “The View” recently where he talked about how it is an embarrassment that we’re banning books in today’s culture. He discussed that there’s an “aversion” to knowing about the past and if there’s anything unpleasant, we simply don’t want to deal with it.
Neil Gaiman is a sci-fi and fantasy author who often finds his work on the banned book lists. “Maus” is a graphic novel that covered the Holocaust – and he even won a Pulitzer for it. Yet, school boards often restrict its use.
Gaiman uses social media to talk about book bans. He’s not upset that he may be losing out on royalties if people are reading his books in a library. He encourages reading from any device and from any location.
Nora Roberts, often dubbed the queen of romance, has been donating to local libraries. This includes the Patmos Library in Michigan which found itself defunded when they refused to remove books that had LGBTQ+ themes in them. Roberts was quick to say, “Libraries are treasures, opening the door to books and stories for all.”
John Green, Hari Kunzru, Salman Rushdie, and many other authors are joining the fight, too.
Books must be saved. No one should have the right to ban a book simply because they don’t like the contents.
What book have you seen banned that you were shocked and appalled by?