The Medieval Times

The student news site of Cabell Midland High School

The student news site of Cabell Midland High School

The Medieval Times

The student news site of Cabell Midland High School

The Medieval Times

Book Banning: The Facts About Restricting Books

Book+Banning%3A+The+Facts+About+Restricting+Books

How would you feel if people constantly told you what you can and can’t read? Book banning is a current front-page topic in the news because it affects children’s love of reading and labels important topics as “inappropriate.” 

 According to the American Library Association’s Office for Intellectual Freedom, 695 library materials have been attempted to be banned or restricted between January 1 and August 31, 2023. These censorships are occurring in school districts and public libraries all across the United States. The most commonly banned book titles are usually young adult books that include some aspect of LGBTQIA+ representation. Some of these books include “The Hate You Give”, “All Boys Aren’t Blue”, and “Gender Queer”, to name a few. 

 According to Public Education Week, groups responsible for pushing book bans include Republican lawmakers and right-wing activist groups such as Moms for Liberty, No Left Turn in Education, and MassResistance. Since 2021, these groups have been responsible for at least half of the book bans in the United States.  

Parental input concerning book banning has been mixed in opinions. Parents who support banning titles in schools state that their children need to be protected from learning about gender identity and sexual content. According to dividedwefall.org, “The traditional liberal point of view is that heterogeneity of thought is far less dangerous than homogeneity of thought and that students, parents, and teachers should be aligned in the process of exposing students to new ideas at the appropriate age for each student.”  

On the other hand, others are very concerned that children who happen to identify as LGBTQIA+ will not feel seen or welcome in school. These parents are also worried that their children will not be ready to navigate the diverse world when they graduate from high school because they lack knowledge of minorities and various sexualities.  Stephen Chbosky, author of “The Perks of Being a Wallflower” states, “Banning books give us silence when we need speech. It closes our ears when we need to listen. It makes us blind when we need sight.”  

In the article “With Rising Book Bans, Librarians Have Come Under Attack” by Elizabeth A. Harris and Alexandra Alter, the authors write “…librarians—accustomed to being seen as dedicated public servants in their communities—have found themselves on the front lines of an acrimonious culture war, with their careers and their personal reputations at risk.” Parents have recently begun to fight against books that they claim will “groom” and introduce them to inappropriate topics. While many of these books usually just have references to sexuality, this does not mean that librarians are to blame. Librarians, simply doing their job by providing a variety of books to students, have suddenly become the people these parents accuse.  

All books are necessary for society because they teach important life lessons to everyone, and help people grow their knowledge on topics that are not discussed enough in the media. The next time you see a book that has been banned, ask yourself why and if was it for a purposeful reason.  

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