The Secret Agenda of Banned Books? Pshaw!

Okay, so I had a warm and fuzzy post in mind to honor Banned Books Week.  I truly did.  And then I ran across a post that made me spitting mad.

The question addressed: is banned books week really a contrived affair for gays to promote themselves?

Yeah, some people really believe that.

And that’s fine.  I’m all about people getting to have and keep their own opinions.  It’s one of the things that makes America great.  HOWEVER, I do have an issue with people bashing others in the name of “what’s best for the children.”

Folks, I have four kids.  I read what my kids read.  I talk to my kids about life and the very difficult issues that life throws their way.  I know who drinks in my kids’ high school, who smokes and who’s having sex.  I know which kids bully, which ones cut and which ones struggle with family issues.  I know life stinks for many reasons and growing up is dang hard.

Knowing this does not give me the right to parent other people’s kids any more than other parents have the right to raise mine.  Nor does it give me the right to blame writers and musicians for my failings as a parent.  I can’t blame the neighbor, the neighbor’s dog, the swimming instructor or the mayor.  I am a parent.  My kids are my responsibility.  If I don’t want them reading smut, it’s my job not to let them read it.  If I don’t want them to play on the railroad tracks, it’s my job not to let them.

I can’t demand that the train company remove the tracks from my town because my kid might get hurt.  Nor can I call them Baby Killers Out to Harm Unsupervised Children Having Innocent Fun Playing on Train Tracks.

Parents, lean in closely.  You are in charge of your own kids.

Aaaand, back to the topic at hand.  I want you to read the post I linked to in its entirety.  But if you don’t, I’ll paste my favorite quote for you to ponder.

(Linda) Harvey (of MissionAmerica.org) said the ALA “has become a megaphone for leftist values and a  disinformation tool to prevent traditional values from getting much shelf space  in libraries.”

I have  never told Ms. Harvey how to raise her children, what they should read, how they should dress or any other type of parenting skills that come with the pleasure of having children.  I honestly don’t even know if Ms. Harvey has kids, and in truth, it’s irrelevant.

What matters is that I am a very religious mother who teaches my kids a certain set of “traditional” morals and values.  And yet, I do not ban, challenge or in any way, censor how other parents raise their progeny.

I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again: if you don’t want to read it, don’t. If you don’t want your kids to read it, don’t let them.

In the same vein, if you don’t want something to go viral, shut up about it.

If people would quit challenging books, there would be no list.  Period.   And that alone would take care of the Gay Conspiracy to Ban Books with the Sole Purpose of Luring Children to the Dark Side.

Seriously?  I have better things to do with my time…like raise my own happy, healthy and well-adjusted kids.  A daunting task in its own right.  I certainly don’t have enough time left over to raise everyone else’s.

So, dear readers, do you think Banned Books Week promotes the evils of the world?  Do you believe that validating a child’s experience (ie reading a book with a protagonist kids can relate to) encourages poor choices?

Curious minds want to know.

Read more: Is library association’s ‘Banned Book Week’ really ‘gay’ promotion?

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15 responses to “The Secret Agenda of Banned Books? Pshaw!

  1. While not technically the same, I thought I’d share a picture of a sign protesting anti-gay marriage.

    Maybe someday people will realize that it’s time to stop being so completely clueless.

    • Great link, Josh.

      I think if more people in this world humanized others that are “different” from them, they would realize we aren’t really that different after all. And maybe that’s what is so scary about validating and accepting another’s existence…we don’t want to see that we are all equal and deserving because then we are no longer special.

      From a religious standpoint the whole sinner thing gets me tied in knots. If we are–admittedly–all sinners as we are taught through our faith (Christian), then who are we to judge who is more sinful? The simple act of prioritizing is in direct opposition of what the Bible teaches. If we are all sinners and deserve God’s wrath and punishment, then we have no horse to ride upon at the front of the parade. We should all be humbled to share our Earthly journey with others and learn to love and accept others along the way.

      The “Gay Agenda” link proves how far off base we are when we pass judgement on others for any reason. I want exactly the same thing in my heterosexual life…except a cow. Then I wouldn’t have to go to the store as often.

      hugs and thanks for sharing~

  2. This is me, applauding.

    And, I can only speak from my experience with my kids, but they’re smart. They question things, and they’re not going to decide to do something just because a kid in a novel does it.

    In fact, my kids don’t want to do anything ANYONE says to do–whether it’s a living, breathing person or a character in a book. I think it’s time we give our kids a little more credit.

    • I so agree, Michelle.

      Kids deserve far more credit than we give them. Not to mention, this “bad stuff” that makes for dark YA…it’s been around forever. It’s not like the publishing companies created homosexual behavior or abusive parents or addiction. A quick walk through history proves otherwise.

      Just because we don’t talk about it doesn’t mean it doesn’t happen. Likewise, portraying a suffering child as a protag for readers to assimilate with and know they are not alone in this difficult world does not glamorize these issues, in my mind.

      Thanks for weighing in!

  3. The Banned Books List often helps authors sell books! Those who challenge books and want them banned are actually doing the authors, and potential readers, a huge favor. Look what happened with the book Speak. People were so enraged that the school wanted it taken off the reading list that even more people were exposed to the book than ever. Those kids might not have ever read it if it wasn’t for the ban!

    Like you said, if you don’t want your kid reading something then don’t allow it in your own home. But don’t try and tell other parents what they can or cannot let their own children read.

    • So very true! My father-in-law has a saying: It doesn’t matter what they say as long as they’re talking about you.

      From a business perspective, this makes perfect sense. Word of mouth–good or bad–is free advertising.

      And maybe that’s what the post really meant to convey. “By publicly displaying the list of books we challenge and try to ban, you are using free advertising to your advantage…”

      I guess I would have been more sympathetic to the argument if they had left out the judgement on homosexuals and kept their agenda hidden as well.

      And it really comes down to this: if you don’t want attention drawn to these books, don’t challenge or ban them in the first place. But then, that takes away an avenue to freely advertise the message against homosexual relationships…

      And maybe a fellow religious person can answer me this: where in the Bible did God say only homosexuals should be persecuted and other sinners should be forgiven?

      I ask this honestly, because until I see proof that God explicity states that “everyone except homosexuals are forgiven,” I have to take at face value the message I was taught as a child: God forgives everyone their sins.

      And until that happens, I refuse to acknowledge the religious persecution against homosexuality. Why don’t we have a Liar’s Agenda? Or a Gossiper’s Agenda? Or an Adulter’s Agenda? Or a Blasphermere’s Agenda?

      A sin is a sin is a sin…

  4. Okay, I had recently raised the question as to whether or not Banning Books was a deterrent any more, or if it had only become an advertisement to do what ever it took to find a copy: via the internet, library, private collectors, etc. I had not heard of the agenda theory. LOL

    The litigation society we’ve developed into saddens me, but it’s part of living in a society of people who believe they’re entitled. Why this concept ever took hold, I’m not sure, but it’s the sinkhole beneath our feet now.

    • Victoria,

      I’ve heard many a writer comment that they would be proud to have their books on the list. Not that they write to create this scenario, but rather because their words had an impact. On some level, it moved people so much that they felt the need to take action against or for it.

      Interestingly, the writers/authors I’ve heard speak on this topic are not all gay. I know, not surprising! Yeah, wonder the agenda thing came in…

  5. Pingback: What I’ve Learned from Banned Books Week | Greenwoman

  6. Wow. Some people are so misguided & misinformed it’s kind of mind-blowing. I’ve raised 2 wonderful young adults who were allowed/encouraged to read as they chose. Yes, I read along with them. I’ve also allowed/encouraged my students to read as they choose. Yes, I read along with them. I’ve never had a kid read a book they weren’t emotionally capable of reading. I’ve never had a kid not smart enough to put down a book that upset them. I’ve had many, many, many kids and parents thank me for helping kids find the right book for the kids at the right time. I’ve seen books save kids. I’ve never seen a book twist a kid.

    • My thoughts exactly, Jemi. Though not quite so eloquent.

      “I’ve seen books save kids. I’ve never seen a book twist a kid.”

      This type of attitude can be down-right frightening. Thanks so much for weighing in. It’s nice to know that so many people are open-minded and level-headed when it comes to working with kids. You truly are a favorite educator of mine!

  7. I am too tired an overwrought from work to say anything smart, but I thought you would like this link to an ad I saw today in Manhattan. Speaks the same message, I think! http://according2g.com/2011/07/if-you-dont-like-gay-marriage-dont-get-gay-married/

  8. Pingback: Blog Treasures and ROW80 Party! « Gene Lempp's Blog

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