Tuesday, November 23, 2021

There's a Whole Lot of Book Banning Going On


Criminal charges are being files. Lists of 'problematic books' are being circulated. Deborah Caldwell-Stone, director of the American Library Association’s Office for Information Freedom, which tracks book challenges nationwide, told Publishers Weekly that

“We have seen a 60% increase in challenges to books received in the month of September compared to last year.” 

And while communities are pushing back, Caldwell-Stone says “the volume of challenges we are hearing and seeing now appears to be the result of an organized movement by certain groups to impose their political views and make them the norm for education and for our society as a whole. You have a state representative circulating a list of 850 books—and if you read that list they are all dealing with sex education, LGBTQIA+ identity, or the experience of persons of color. You also have people showing up at school boards complaining about the exact same books, repeating almost world for word the same complaints found on social media.”

Shirley Robinson, executive director of the Texas Library Association, agrees. “There is clearly an organized effort going on to bring large groups of people to school board meetings or to City Council meetings. And we as a community of educators and librarians need to stand together. We need to find a way to explain to people, in a way that makes sense to them, that we’re standing up for one of their fundamental rights as Americans.”

Read the full article, Librarians, Educators Warn of 'Organized' Book Banning Efforts at Publishers Weekly here.

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