Banning Books is Bullshit

January 31, 2024
4 Minute Read

I can’t believe we’re dealing with this bullshit again. States and local municipalities all over the country are banning books from libraries under the guise of “protecting the children”.

I started this post back in June and it’s been stewing in my mind for over 6 months now. I wasn’t sure how well I was articulating the points I wanted to make. But now that this bullshit hasn’t ebbed, I decided to tweak it and publish it anyway.

It feels like the crazy is getting so much more worse. I mean Oklahoma’s Education Department put the Libs of TikTok terrorist on its library panel. What the fuck?

These laws and decisions are all being passed and made under the guise of “protecting the children” and giving parents power to decide what children read. The problem is, parents always have had the power to decide what their children can and can’t read. What books they can check out at the library, and what books they can’t. I don’t remember my parents ever really saying “no” to any book I wanted to borrow. Though I do remember a few instances of them (rightly) pointing out that I’m not going to be able to finish reading all the books I wanted to check out within the borrowing window.

The difference is that now you have parents and politicians stepping in and determining what other parents’ children can and can’t read. It’s not one parent saying that their son or daughter can’t read a book because they don’t like it. It’s now one parent saying no child in their city or state can read a book because one parent doesn’t like it. And here’s the kicker...all too often the people complaining don’t even live in the district or area they’re protesting at. I don’t think I’m too far out of line to think that the people who live in a township or city should be the ones making these decisions.

Books are an amazing medium. They provide so much to so many people. They can provide an escape from reality into worlds of fantasy. They can teach people about any countless number of things, from insects to what happened in Norway during World War II.

There have been efforts by the left, possibly ironically, to get the Bible banned as well. Heck, even Bill O’Reilly got banned in Florida. And while I do find some humor in it for its schadenfreude, I don’t support banning the Bible or O’Reilly’s asinine books either. The only person who should stop a child from reading a book should be the child’s parents. And though I can’t tell parents what to do, I would always suggest they go the route of letting their kids read what they want.

At the end of the day, people, including children, gain so much knowledge from reading. They can read about viewpoints they might not otherwise be introduced to. Are conservatives so scared that they’re beliefs can’t stand up to scrutiny they’re willing to flat out ban the alternatives? (Don't answer that)

And like so many other rules and regulations that get put in place, this hits the poor and less fortunate far harder than anyone else. Those well off can shrug it off and just go to their local bookstore and buy the book for their kids if they need or want to. Those who are scraping by won’t be able to. The library provides a fantastic service to them. It allows them and their family access to books they might otherwise not be able to afford or gain access to.

And while the legal fight was lost, a Virginia state representative even went so far as to try to stop Barnes & Noble from selling a book he didn’t happen to like. This is how far the GOP is willing to go.

For those in the U.S. - vote these assholes out in November.