Tony Ballantyne once said, “The Unprepared will eventually be destroyed; ignorance is no hiding place. ” With this he meant that ignoring certain topics in life sets a person up for failure. This is exactly what is happening in public schools by banning books and limiting a child’s variety of reads. Banning books stunts the expansion of the creative and intellectual mind while withholding information on scandalous subjects that are apparent in everyday life. By taking certain books away from students you cap a lid on a child’s perspective of the real world and isolate their minds into what is known as “safe.
”Taking books away from the public eye demolishes the chance for people to think beyond their comfort zones and challenge their minds. Book banning prevents students from extending their minds to foreign concepts and slows the development of their brains by withholding information needed. As Americans we have the right to pick and choose what we do and do not want to read. Books of all subjects deserve the right to be available to all students because every book has a message portray and it’s those messages that further the development of the brain.
“Not every book will be right for every reader, but the freedom to choose for ourselves from a full array of possibilities is a hard-won right that we must not take for granted in this country,” (Platt). Just because a book is put on a shelf does not mean society is forcing you to read it! It’s your freedom of choice to decide what books you want to read, but it isn’t your decision to control what other people read. The choice to read a certain book is all yours and it’s your job to allow other people to choose for themselves.
A full selection of books on every topic you can possibly think of is the type of shelf every library should have. One’s mind cannot be challenged by “playing it safe” with books that take no risk, and you cannot learn from or about topics you have not been exposed to. Book banning tries to hide controversial topics from the adolescent mind but in an attempt to protect the children; we’re simply harming them by limiting their minds. “It is through fantasy that children achieve catharsis. It is the best means they have for taming Wild Things. ” (Bancroft).
If we didn’t allow all books to be available for students to choose from than they wouldn’t be able to access the creative sides of their minds. Fantasy created by authors opens doors that unlock a world of creative outlooks in a child, if those books aren’t accessible for students, than art in the future might as well be dead. They say the Earth without Art is “EH,” if that’s so than libraries that allow book banning are contributing to a future society on earth with a lack of art. Parents banning books are blinding the children of America from issues and risky topics surrounding them in their everyday life.
Book banning denies students from engaging in controversial conversation and refuses to open the eyes of the adolescent to the beauties of the natural world around them. “Books dealing with edgy, dark subject matter such as addiction, abuse, suicide, and teen prostitution can offer young adult readers a broader perspective on the world, but these qualities often make such books and their authors a target for would-be censors” (Manning). Books teach and inform students all over the nation in ways that cannot simply be taught in a classroom.
They allow the reader to paint a picture in his/her head and visualize scene by scene. Books questioned for censorship are ones that introduce new concepts for readers which then give them a position on the topic and an opinion of their own. By taking that away from the students, you strip them of their potential of a broader outlook in life. With that also comes the lack of knowledge to understand and accept their peers. Books introduce characters and personalities like ones who surround you daily, but they also provide insight on how to better understand those characters and feel empathy towards them.
“They experience crippling difficulties in school, in social relations and in all matters of self-esteem. They use the language I use in the story and worse because it is all they have to try to match what is inside to the outside world. They need to be recognized, and brought into your fold. Often we adults can’t help them, but you can. I write the stories I write to bring things like this to your attention because I believe if kids who are treated badly are to survive, they will survive through the acceptance of their peers, and that acceptance will come from understanding.
” (Cutcher). Parents try to take away books that may contain any ‘inappropriate’ content to shield their child of foreign concepts, but this content labeled as inappropriate is what their children have to face daily. All that book banning is doing is under-educating students about the real world and life as it stands in modern day. In school teachers prepare their students for anything and everything that comes next in their students journey, yet they ban the books that will best prepare them and inform them of the aspects of life never covered in a Social Studies Textbook.
Some may argue that topics in certain books are too corrupting for students to know about, these topics include: graphic language about sex, drinking, and drugs. These very subjects, whether you like it or not, are always going to be a part of life no matter what the situation. Instead of avoiding the topic, parents should inform their children of it so that they are prepared for whatever crosses their path in the future.
As care-takers, parents have the duty of setting their child up for success in any way, shape, or form, and by allowing all books to be available to the children of public schools, they’re doing just that. Books shouldn’t be banned from public schools because by limiting the variety of novels on shelves, you limit the horizons of a student’s creative mind. Banning books withholds information on subjects that are thought of as scandalous and controversial and by doing so, under-educates the students who are the future of society.
Courtney from Study Moose
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