Saturday, October 1, 2016

Banned Book: Who's In My Family?

This is a cute picture book about families and how different they can be. The main family is mixed race, and they go to the zoo one day and talk about all the different families they see around them. Harmless, right?

Well, this book was banned because it portrayed *gasp* same sex couples! That does NOT portray family values, according to people who are overly sensitive. I'm going to try and stay off my soapbox, but if you don't like something, just ignore it. If it's not being forced in your face, there's no reason you need to address it.

Except MY LIBRARY's copy... I repeat, MY LIBRARY!!!!!!!'s copy, had two pages taped together. Someone had neatly, deliberately, folded one page over another spread at the corners AND TAPED IT DOWN.

FOLDED pages in a library book. TAPED CORNERS in a library book.

My heart sank when I saw this, and not just because of the folding and taping. I mean, that too, because, c'mon, they're library books! Let's be gentle with them so everyone can read them.

But mostly my heart sank because I knew why those pages were taped together.

I very carefully peeled off the tape and unfolded the corners...


The page with the same sex couples.

You know what? If it's your book, you do what you want. Except, joke's on you because you BOUGHT the book, and the author is just laughing as you tape the pages together because he got your money - you can do whatever you want with the book now.

But a library book is for everyone. And maybe some parents don't care if their kid sees same sex parents in a book. Maybe some parents are happy about it, because they know their kid will see this in the world, and seeing in a book just hits that point home - this is real. Some people will be happy to see themselves portrayed in a book, and some kids will be happy to see their two mommies or daddies portrayed in a book. 

If you don't want your kid to see it, then turn two pages at once. Don't tape them. Better yet - if you don't want your kid to see it, don't check out the book. Don't restrict what other people see when they check out the book.

After all this research into banned books and thinking it was preposterous and dated, I was SO saddened, literally, legitimately saddened, to see this in one of my library's own books. 

Have you seen any censorship in books or libraries?

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