Banned Books Week began today, September 30. This week celebrates literature that has been challenged and/or banned (usually in school districts). It's a week to draw attention to the great stories that people all over the country--and world--try to silence.
To remember that censorship is never okay.
Yes, banning books is a form of censorship. Taking stories away and hiding them from readers, pulling them off library shelves, says that it's okay that some people's stories should not be shared. That certain people should have the power to decide what should and should not be read.
I could spend a great deal of time and space talking about censorship and why everyone has the right to be heard. And I will spend time talking about censorship and the dangers of silencing voices in our society. But first I want to challenge you to find a challenged/banned book and read it this week. Take a little time every day to fight censorship by choosing to read a book others have tried to hide from readers. There are many lists available here.
Harry Potter and Huckleberry Finn are not the only books that have been challenged or banned in recent years. In fact, you might be surprised by some of the titles that are on the lists.
Please read a banned book this week. Give voice to these authors. Let them know that their words matter.
Happy (and banned) reading!