Libraries Are on the Front Lines Fighting Book Banning
If you're reading this, you already know banned books are no bueno.
Libraries have been on the front lines fighting on behalf of banned and challenged books that deserve to freely see the light of day. And since this week (April 8-14, 2018) is National Library Week, it's a good time to thank the librarians in your life for making information free and accessible to all, regardless of what other people (i.e., conservative parents) might think.
It seems that every time a book is banned, suddenly everyone wants to get their hands on a copy of the illicit literature. Often it's to find out for themselves what is so explicit about a certain book, with disappointing results.
This visual on banned books from Invaluable dives into not only the banning process, but the reasons why certain genres tend to get banned the most. For instance, most YA books are banned for being "unsuited for the age group." These books that are banned often deal with mature themes about going from a child to an adult, something many young adults experience as they grow up, yet book bannings often dictate that they aren't old enough to read the material.
Another genre that gets banned for particular reasons is fantasy. Fantasy novels are usually banned for "occult/Satanic" reasons, whereas science fiction is rarely banned for being occult. Of course, there are always outliers, but seeing common patterns in why genres are usually banned makes it all the more frustrating! So, next time you see one of these banned books in a store, grab a copy or two and get to reading.
If anything should be banned, it's the act of banning books. I tend to think individuals are fully capable of deciding what media is best for them to consume at any given time and really don't need the government or any organization doing it for them.
If you're curious about what books are challenged or banned in your local area, ask your librarians. They'll know.
While you're there, check to see what events your library might be hosting for National Library Week. And if you can afford it, maybe give a friendly librarian a Starbucks gift card or something nice. Librarians do so much for the community and are often severely underpaid for the services they provide.