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Thursday, September 30, 2010

On Book Banning (also, I totally just used bronzer as eyeshadow*)

*I'm all about the levity. Or that's what I tell myself to make myself feel better when I interject inanity into an otherwise important topic.

As a rule, I usually don't like most of what I hear or read. No, really, I don't. It's because, in my opinion, most people are inherently full of shit or have absolutely no clue about what they're talking about. They'll extrapolate the fuel for their fire to prove a point, completely ignoring the rest of the content, which would invalidate their point.Then there's just bad writing (*cough*Chuck Palahniuk*cough*).

It really gets my goat, y'all.

Just because I don't happen to like what you say or write, doesn't mean I think you should stop saying or writing it. I'm not going to ask my local library to ban your book, or call your producer and have him fire you. That would be insane. You know what I'll do instead? Turn off the radio (I don't have cable, so changing the channel is rather moot for me), put the book down or stop reading the article. It's really that simple.

Let me go on the record, again, as saying I am not a Christian. In fact, I find most organized religion rather hypocritical, but Christianity takes first prize in the hypocrisy contest (hey all you Presbyterians! Thanks for still going to the church my grandfather's family established. No, they really they did.). I'm not going to go running around to libraries and bookstores demanding that the bible be banned, or anything written by a Christian author be removed from the shelves. I'm not going to ask the FCC to remove Christian broadcasts from the airwaves. Why? Because I have the option to just not read it or listen to itThat's right, I can choose.

I can choose whether or not I want The Trolls to be exposed to viewpoints I don't agree with, or to let them be exposed to explicit (sexually and otherwise) material, violence, radical concept or alternative lifestyles.

When people insist on banning or removing a book, it speaks volumes about the character of that person (or lack thereof). It reeks of laziness and implies that you think that your opinion is the only one that matters. And you know what? I can choose to ignore you and go ahead and read those banned books.

Actually, that's exactly what I'm going to do. To celebrate Banned Book Week, I am going to have The Trolls read the Bill of Rights, specifically:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

And we will be reading To Kill a Mockingbird together. If we have time, we might even get to Huck Finn.

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