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Thursday, September 6, 2018

Banned Books Week Should Be Celebrated Every Day




“I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it,” said Voltaire.

We need more people to respect, support, and defend free speech in America.  You can begin by honoring Banned Books Week, which is celebrated in 2018 on September 24-29.  The American Library Association launched this in 1982 and each year its support has grown.  Now, more than a number of generations can remember, our nation needs to stand up for books to be shared, sold, read, and talked about.

“By focusing on efforts across the country to remove or restrict access to books, Banned Books Week draws national attention to the harm of censorship,” says www.BannedBooksWeek.org. “Banned Books Week brings together the entire book community – librarians, booksellers, publishers, journalists, teachers, and readers of all types – in shared support of the freedom to seek and to express ideas, even those some consider unorthodox or unpopular.”

According to the ALA, the top 10 most challenged books in 2017 were as follows.  Perhaps you should read some of these books – and encourage others to do so:

Thirteen Reasons Why
The Absolute True Diary of a Part-time Indian
Drama
The Kite Runner
George
Sin as a Funny Word
To Kill a Mockingbird
The Hate U Give
And Tango Makes Three
I Am Jazz

So what should you do when you become aware of censorship taking place?  You can report it to the ALA, the National Council of Teachers of English, Comic Book Legal Defense Fund, and the National Coalition Against Censorship.

ALA.org has said this of book bans and challenges:

“Books are still being banned and challenged today.  A challenge is an attempt to remove or restrict materials, based upon the objections of a person or group.  A banning is the removal of those materials.

“While books have been and continue to be banned, part of the Banned Books Week celebration is the fact that in a majority of cases, the books have remained available.  This happens only thanks to the efforts of librarians, teachers, students, and community members who stand up and speak out for the freedom to read.”

So how can someone get involved to help make sure no books are ever banned or censored?

1.      Protest a ban or act of censorship.
2.      Stay informed on cases where bans have been alleged.
3.      Attend events that celebrate the first amendment.
4.      Sign petitions against those who implement book bans.
5.      Help spread the word that others should read banned books.
6.      Post on social media about those who ban or censor books.
7.      Encourage your school, local library, or publishing community to rally around Banned Books Week.
8.      Support the ALA, Freedom to Read Foundation, and other freedom-fighting groups.

Books are so important to society.  They help us learn the truth and allow us to explore the world from our own living room.  Don’t let bullies like Trump try to convince you that knowledge, media or books are bad or useless.  

Ban Trump, Honor Books!


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Brian Feinblum’s insightful views, provocative opinions, and interesting ideas expressed in this terrific blog are his alone and not that of his employer or anyone else. You can – and should -- follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at brianfeinblum@gmail.com. He feels much more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog © 2018. Born and raised in Brooklyn, he now resides in Westchester. His writings are often featured in The Writer and IBPA’s Independent.  This was named one of the best book marketing blogs by Book Baby http://blog.bookbaby.com/2013/09/the-best-book-marketing-blogs and recognized by Feedspot in 2018 as one of the top book marketing blogs. Also named by WinningWriters.com as a "best resource.” He recently hosted a panel on book publicity for Book Expo America and participated in a PR panel at the Sarah Lawrence College Writers Institute Conference.

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