Book Banning News -- the Around the World Edition!

  • Peg Kehret's Abduction! has survived a challenge in Minnesota. 

  • From The Pioneer Press:

    Harris didn't allow her daughter, 10-year-old Coa Murrell, to finish reading "Abduction!" after she had checked it out from the Echo Park Elementary library in Burnsville. Harris said the book was too violent and made her daughter fearful.

    "This is something you would see on Lifetime TV or a movie rated PG-13," said Harris, who read the 215-page book. "As a parent, I want to be able to control what my children have access to."

    That control you want?  Yeah.  You already exercised it by taking the book away from your daughter.

  • The Chocolate War survived a challenge in Idaho just in time to be challenged in Connecticut. 

  • This one is an example of censors that just won't quit:  Their child was given The Outsiders as alternate reading, they still wanted Cormier's book pulled.  They made a two-page list of every offensive passage and word in the novel.  Even with that very long (and very out of context) form of evidence, they were told by the teacher, principal, superintendent's office and the school board that the book would not be pulled.

    So they went to the other parents.

    From The West Hartford News:

    Rick Stockwell went through the KP directory and for two nights by hand, addressed nearly 375 envelopes to all eighth-grade parents; his wife made copies of the four-page letter packet at Staples. A few other parents, Donna Stockwell's mom, and the Stockwells' daughter, helped stuff the envelopes. Stockwell estimates the entire mailing cost nearly $400. They had to rush it, because the novel they thought would go to students in May, was handed out in April.

    Wow.  Just imagine what they could accomplish if they tried to do something constructive, like oh, I don't know... promoting diversity and tolerance?

  • After some confusion, 150 books on gender issues were returned to library shelves in Fukui, Japan.  The challenge itself sounds pretty standard -- someone wasn't into gender equality and complained about the books.  What I found really interesting was this bit about a town assemblywoman chastising the library (rightly) for pulling the books:

    She also said that not putting out books paid for with tax money was tantamount to a misuse of public funds.

    Get it?  It's the same argument that book banners always use -- that they don't want their tax money paying for pornography, etc.  But this time, the good guys used it.  Be sure to file that one away for the next time someone says, "Can't you just keep it in the back room?".