Should books be censored?

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Post by Felix on Tue Feb 10, 2009 2:56 pm

So, today at book club(yes, I go to book club) we were discusing about the book "Thirteen Reasons Why" and went into talk about what book we would read next. One book was mentioned by the teacher that she gave her students last year over regents week to read, and we said we would read it. How ever; she received a a letter from one of the parents of the students saying that "the book was bad, blah blah blah, and should be banned from the school library".

We all looked at eachother and thought she was crazy...

But, agian the teacher mentions other books that have been banned from the library because of compliants such as "The Golden Compass", "Huckly Berry Fin", "Of Mice and Men" and lots of others. All of us thought that censoring or banning of certain books was a stupid thing to do.

Do you guys think certain books should be censored and/or banned?
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Post by L0d3x on Tue Feb 10, 2009 3:03 pm

I don't think books should be censored. If saying the "f-word" is the way the author wishes to express a certain character's feelings, then by all meens the author should have the freedom to do so.

Banning books is something else, I guess it depends on the content. Books like "how to murder a human" for example, should be banned...

But books like "how to cook for a human", ah well you get the idea.

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Post by Felix on Tue Feb 10, 2009 3:09 pm

I guess "how to murder a human" should be banned...
but we felt that is what up to the readers to decide if they should read it or not, rather than just ban it for everyone else who might want to read it.


Last edited by Felix on Tue Feb 10, 2009 3:12 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Post by Toaster on Tue Feb 10, 2009 3:10 pm

While banning books from all public outlets is obviously wrong (nazi book burning?) I can certainly understand not wanting certain books in a school library.

If you don't want your kid reading American Psycho, I can accept that. That is, however, beside the point. All the books that you mentioned are not at all gratuitous or graphic. They are all either literary classics or, in the case of The Golden Compass, young-adult fantasy.

The only possible way that I can conclude that someone could be offended by The Golden Compass is religion, as it includes things like magic and invisible friends...

So, while I can agree that some EXTREME books do not belong in school libraries, keeping them out should be justified by some decent reasoning, and they should NEVER be taken out of society all together.
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Post by Felix on Tue Feb 10, 2009 3:17 pm

ReconToaster wrote:While banning books from all public outlets is obviously wrong (nazi book burning?) I can certainly understand not wanting certain books in a school library.

If you don't want your kid reading American Psycho, I can accept that. That is, however, beside the point. All the books that you mentioned are not at all gratuitous or graphic. They are all either literary classics or, in the case of The Golden Compass, young-adult fantasy.

The only possible way that I can conclude that someone could be offended by The Golden Compass is religion, as it includes things like magic and invisible friends...

So, while I can agree that some EXTREME books do not belong in school libraries, keeping them out should be justified by some decent reasoning, and they should NEVER be taken out of society all together.

Then why not ban Harry Potter as well? It has magic and all sorts of things.

We didn't see the need to ban certain books, we felt that it should be up to the reader to decide if he should read it and be able to handle the content of the book. Rather than just ban the whole thing for a select few parents who might be offended by it.
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Post by CivBase on Tue Feb 10, 2009 3:55 pm

From public libraries, no. But I don't think school libraries should be putting up pornography books any time soon.

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Post by Kasrkin Seath on Tue Feb 10, 2009 5:43 pm

CivBase wrote: But I don't think school libraries should be putting up pornography books any time soon.
You crazy?
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Post by Toaster on Tue Feb 10, 2009 6:13 pm

Felix wrote:Then why not ban Harry Potter as well? It has magic and all sorts of things.

My wording may have been elaborate... I was saying that the only reason that I see as to why someone would want to ban The Golden Compass would be that it may include content that is against their religion... Magic is deemed "evil" by Christianity (and I'm sure, other religions.)

Also, many people DID try to ban Harry Potter from their schools, and some succeeded.
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Post by Rotaretilbo on Tue Feb 10, 2009 7:25 pm

I think we can all agree that the His Dark Materials trilogy is a bit different than Harry Potter. The Church, symbolizing Christianity, is like the main evil bad guy in the trilogy. Pullman was making a statement about the Church rather than writing a simple children's fantasy book. I'm not saying the trilogy should be banned from libraries, since it is, in some ways, like the atheist's Narnia, but I want you to understand that the presence of magic isn't the primary reason why us religious types are offended by the book.

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Post by Toaster on Tue Feb 10, 2009 7:53 pm

Rotaretilbo wrote:I think we can all agree that the His Dark Materials trilogy is a bit different than Harry Potter. The Church, symbolizing Christianity, is like the main evil bad guy in the trilogy. Pullman was making a statement about the Church rather than writing a simple children's fantasy book. I'm not saying the trilogy should be banned from libraries, since it is, in some ways, like the atheist's Narnia, but I want you to understand that the presence of magic isn't the primary reason why us religious types are offended by the book.

I only read The Golden Compass... in sixth grade... and I didn't catch the relation... I probably would today

Still, last I checked, Atheists don't ten to believe hell bounce

I wouldn't call it the Narnia for the rest of us. They are good books, and that is all which I care about.
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Post by Rasq'uire'laskar on Tue Feb 10, 2009 8:02 pm

ReconToaster wrote:While banning books from all public outlets is obviously wrong (nazi book burning?) I can certainly understand not wanting certain books in a school library.
Yes, like "The Anarchist's Cookbook".

ReconToaster wrote: If you don't want your kid reading American Psycho, I can accept that. That is, however, beside the point. All the books that you mentioned are not at all gratuitous or graphic. They are all either literary classics or, in the case of The Golden Compass, young-adult fantasy.

The only possible way that I can conclude that someone could be offended by The Golden Compass is religion, as it includes things like magic and invisible friends...

So, while I can agree that some EXTREME books do not belong in school libraries, keeping them out should be justified by some decent reasoning, and they should NEVER be taken out of society all together.
Yes.
Quite honestly, if you are afraid of your children becoming Wiccans from reading Harry Potter, you haven't raised them correctly. If you are offended by the use of the "N" word in "Huckleberry Finn," feel free to remove that railroad spike from your head.

Yes, I see books like "The Communist Manifesto" on the library shelves, and I think about what it would be like to have that book yanked out of the library.
And then I think there's a diehard atheist walking down the shelves of Hastings, and feeling the same way about the Bible, or a black in the fiction section writing a letter to have "Tom Sawyer" removed.

It's a no-win situation.
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Post by CivBase on Tue Feb 10, 2009 8:34 pm

ReconToaster wrote:My wording may have been elaborate... I was saying that the only reason that I see as to why someone would want to ban The Golden Compass would be that it may include content that is against their religion... Magic is deemed "evil" by Christianity (and I'm sure, other religions.)
*sigh*
Only if that Christian is paranoid. Magic is not real, even Christians know this, so for the most part, we don't care.





I use too many commas... and elipsis'.

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Post by Gold Spartan on Tue Feb 10, 2009 8:51 pm

books shoud NEVER be burned! People have a right to read what they want! Your school is ran by nazies!
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Post by Dud Doodoo on Tue Feb 10, 2009 10:09 pm

Only books that are extremely offensive or extreme should be removed from school libraries. Other than that if a parents has a problem with their child reading a particular book in the library then they can write a letter to the school administration requesting that their kid not be allowed to check it out. Under no circumstances should schools take books off their shelves because a parent is bitching about a curse word.

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Post by Rotaretilbo on Tue Feb 10, 2009 10:58 pm

Um...Goldspartan, no one said books should or were being burned, as far as I know. I did see someone make an analogy between pulling books from public libraries and the book burning the Nazis did, though.

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Post by Toaster on Wed Feb 11, 2009 4:40 am

Rotaretilbo wrote: I did see someone make an analogy between pulling books from public libraries and the book burning the Nazis did, though.

*Raises hand
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Post by KristallNacht on Wed Feb 11, 2009 8:53 am

its funny how two of the books you say are banned at your school we HAVE to read in high school...
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