Monday, December 28, 2009

Why Labels and/or Restrictions Won't Work

I know I said that we were done with book banning for a while, but I keep getting new blog ideas and they deserve to be let out.

Book banning is really an umbrella term, besides "banning" it can refer to restricting, labeling, reshelving or otherwise censoring books (because it's easier to say "Banned Books Week" than "Banned, Restricted, Labeled, Reshelved or Otherwise Censored Week"). Oftentimes, the censors request that the books be labeled or restricted with some sort of parental permission system in place.

In the case of restrictions, censors often request that the books be placed on a special shelf or be labeled and only be allowed to be taken out with parental supervision or permission by any minor.

A) This means lumping everyone under 18 into the same boat so to speak. If you treat a three-year-old and a 16-year-old the same you have no business doing anything that involves children.

B) Once children are old enough to go to the library by themselves, they can't take out these books with a parent or guardian there. This is a great hindrance to both the child and the parent. The parent has better things to do than supervise a child that doesn't require supervision, but they have to because a book is considered too "dangerous" for minors. And the child probably won't want to go to the library if they have to drag mommy or daddy along to check out a book. That's not what I would call encouraging literacy or a love of reading.

C) I'm making a huge generalization here but there's a lot of truth to it. If a kid is in a library, you've won. Kids who go to libraries and read books are not part of the crowd who does drugs, has casual sex, drinks or smokes underage, or otherwise does things they shouldn't be doing. Kids who are taking out books from a library are not the ones we need to have tantrums over.

D) Don't try to say "this isn't censorship". It's plain to see that saying this isn't censorship is a load of bull.

Labeling isn't too bad in theory, we have advisory labels and ratings on movies, music and other such things. But there are many differences between a movie at the cinema and a book in a library.

First of all, movie ratings are undertaken by private institutions and are not legally binding. The library is a government institution meant to serve everyone. Who would decide what would be worthy of a label? Would it simply mean that someone objected to the material within? Because libraries are meant to serve everyone, all books would require a label because virtually anything can be considered "objectionable".

If we went by sexual content, what would qualify as label-worthy? The mere mention of sex or would an act have to be described? Would LGBTQ material get labeled?

And if the aim is to discourage children from reading these books, won't putting labels on them and making a big fuss just make them all the more desirable?

The point is: You're the only one who can decide what your children can't and can't read. You have no business interfering with another child's reading. It is no different than going up to a child who is eating a bag of chips and taking them away from them because you don't want your child eating them. And chips can do far more harm than a book ever could.

Happy holidays to all.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Beeping Homosexuality

It's hard to say who I'm more disgusted with at the moment, CBS or my radio station.

As I'm sure you've heard, CBS blurred a kiss between Adam Lambert and his male keyboardist at the American Music Awards.

If that's not bad enough, they left a simulation dance move of oral sex between Adam Lambert and a dancer unblurred. If you're going to blurr something, blurr something that's, you know, actually inappropriate under broadcasting standards. As opposed to kissing. Which you can probably find on one channel or another at ANY hour of the day.

What makes this even worse, they had previously showed footage Madonna and Britney Spears tongue kissing. Their excuse is that the Madonna image has been seen frequently, but the Adam Lambert image is of "current controversy". Oh please, a seven year old could come up with a more believable excuse than that.

Political correctness aside, in terms of acceptance, girl-on-girl stuff gets off easier than guy-on-guy stuff. I don't know why this is, perhaps the long-standing unreasonable loathing of sodomy (despite the fact an awful lot of straight couples participate in that as well) or the equally long-standing ridiculous connection of gay men with pedophiles. Maybe it's the double standard that girls are allowed to break gender stereotypes as much as they want, but if guys do, they're "weird". Maybe it's all of them. Can we get a sociologist in here?

The point is that I have little doubt the blurring of the kiss was based in homophobia, and that's wrong. Hopefully CBS will take note of the public reaction.

Now, about my radio station (That's misleading, it's not "mine" it's just the one I listen to).

Just today I was listening to it and Hedley's Cha-Ching was playing. The song is a riff on reality TV and the stupidity of it. One of the shows it references is A Shot At Love with Tile Tequila, the specific lines being "Pretending to be lesbians/and Tila's playin' all of them". The word lesbian was beeped.

Yep, I didn't know it was a swear word either. (End sarcasm)

I do not know if this was a decision by the station itself or higher up, but you can be sure that they will be receiving an angry letter from me very soon. I'll update you with the results of this. Cheers.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Home for The What Now?

Before I begin this blog I would just like to say sorry for the inactivity. Kitty and I are very busy with schoolwork and other things. We'll try to be a bit more regular. It'll be a short one today.

In addition to my "Pink BullShirt Day" blog from a while ago, here is an excellent essay by a friend of mine on the same subject (I have to say, she said it way better than I did):

Today I am blogging about a rather unique debate going on in light of the upcoming holiday season. A few people have complained about some stores' usage of the word "holiday" in place of "Christmas".

I could be wrong but this seems to be more of an issue in the U.S.A. than in Canada but that isn't really relevant.

The people in question are saying that if a company uses "holiday" it means they are "against Christmas".

I don't think the companies that are making/have made the switch to holiday instead of Christmas are trying to exclude people who celebrate Christmas. Actually I'm quite sure they're including them.

Many, many cultures and religions have holidays that fall within the month of December. Just to name a few: Christmas, Hannukah, Kwanzaa, Sinterklaas, New Year's Eve, HumanLight, Eid al-Adha, Solstice, and a heck of a lot more.

Canada and America are both patchwork cultures with exceeding amounts of diversity. So when large companies that have stores all across America and Canada use holiday instead of Christmas, they're just trying to be inclusive to everyone. When you just use Christmas, sure you may be including a large group but you're also leaving a lot of people out.

And I don't see how the word "holiday" is "against Christmas", it includes Christmas just as it does all the other holidays. Christmas IS a holiday, I really don't see the issue here. I, personally, celebrate Christmas and I don't feel offended by any of this. In fact, it makes me happy that big companies are being inclusive and tolerant.

That's all for now folks, we'll hopefully get back to you shortly.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Rant Saturday!!

God, I'm changing days of the week each time I do this, eh? Hehe...

So this time's topic? Meh...Let's go with The Eagle Forum!

Alright, it's pretty much their Mission Statement that pisses me off the most. So here I go!

Our first task is to assimilate the millions of non-English-speaking foreign born who are legal residents." Yeah...take out the different culture from the states. That fixes every one's problems. Yup. 100%. (That's not xenophobic at ALL)

We support the right of individuals to keep and bear arms, as guaranteed in the Second Amendment." Because, you know, it's good to keep guns in your homes nowadays when the Amendment was written WAY BACK WHEN THE BRITISH WERE GOING TO INVADE!!!

and the equally important roles of father and mother." What about Mother and mother, or father and father? Wait..they don't want gays getting married or being together because gay parents only raise gay children, just like straight parents only raise straight children. (My voice is just dripping with sarcasm.)

defeat the misnamed Equal Rights Amendment with its hidden agenda of tax-funded abortions and same-sex marriages." OK...So they're saying they don't support pro choice and gays at all....yeah. Great. Freaking great. What if there's a single mother with 5 kids and she's pregnant again and if she has that last child she'll be put out on the street? Then what? 'Oh don't worry about being homeless, as long as you don't have an abortion it doesn't matter that you're out on the street with all you kids, because you didn't get an abortion!'

Now to move onto other things with them...and my always loved sarcasm. Let's move onto their little things with feminists!

From one post about how the move Juno explains feminism. "
...what the feminists call an unplanned pregnancy after initiating a loveless one-night incident with a classmate named Paulie" Well...when a female has sex with someone and gets pregnant and not meaning's kind of is and UNPLANNED PREGNANCY.

The movie's message is that no man should have anything to say about a baby for whom he is financially responsible." ..........Not even if he's the father? What troubles me the most is what the title is 'The Movie Juno Explains Feminism.' Let me make one thing clear MOST FEMINISTS AREN'T AGAINST MALES OR ANYTHING LIKE THAT! They're just pro-female. Like "We can do most things, just as well of guys even though we have a vagina!"

triumph of feminist ideology, i.e., the irrelevancy of men, especially fathers." Read what I have JUST written on the above comment.

feminism has made fatherlessness acceptable in our society."'s all the DIVORCES that have made it acceptable, because of all the stupid people who can't make it work with one another and want to take the easy way out.

this movie reflects today's high school culture: sexual activity without marriage, crude pictures on the walls, vulgar language, a girl smoking a pipe, unattractive clothes, uncombed hair, enjoyment of slasher movies and weird music..." So, the lady who runs the Eagle Forum thinks we aren't allowed to like that stuff or be different? Man...even some ADULTS like weird music, slasher films, have sex without marriage and use inappropriate language. What do you classify them as then? Outcasts? Not adults?

I would like to end this off with a final note: The lady who runs the Eagle Forum has some SERIOUS issues that could be helped with therapy. Thank you, and have a great f'en day.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Pink Bull-Shirt Day

I would like to mention that this blog was inspired by a well-written rant-turned-essay by a very good friend of mine, who I'll call L. Thanks L, I hope this measures up to yours.

Once upon a time(September 2007) in a far away place(Nova Scotia) there was a ninth-grade boy who wore a pink shirt to the first day of school. Most everyone in the school couldn't care less about what he wore on his own person but two other boys decided to go up to him, call him gay and threaten to beat him up. A truly lousy start to high school if I've ever heard one.

But two kind souls by the name of Travis Price and David Shepard heard this decided that they couldn't just sit by and do nothing. So they marched down to the store and picked up 50 pink shirts to pass out at school the next day, they also emailed hundreds of students to participate. The result? A sea of of hundreds of pink shirts meeting the eyes of the boy and the two bullies the next day. The ninth-grader was overjoyed and the bullies never came near him again.

Now before I go on, I would like to express how UTTERLY AWESOME I think this is and I would be if I was ever to meet these two boys or someone like them. I believe they got some sort of award for their efforts, they better have. Talk about fighting for what's right.

But moving on, this wonderful event has caused many many schools across Canada and the States to adopt a yearly "Pink Shirt Day" where students wear pink shirts and usually get a group yearbook photo taken.

Nice concept, but something about this rubs me the wrong way.

Probably because that wearing pink shirts is ALL they're doing. I haven't heard of any exceptions to this(there probably are and if so, I apologize). And if students individually chose to wear pink shirts on a specific day to commemorate the wonderful thing those boys did, or if the school held seminars or a huge assembly to watch a documentary about Columbine or any other bullying-caused school shooting then I would be totally behind this.

But when the school just goes "Yeah let's all wear pink shirts to fight bullying! WHOO! SCHOOL SPIRIT!" it becomes a huge joke: "LOOK AT ME, I'M LIKE, WEARING A PINK SHIRT AND I'M A GUY LOLOLOLOLOL!!!"

Or in the very least, similar to wearing a political button because you thought the button was cute.

And I'm sure a lot of kids wearing the shirts are doing it in support of the anti-bullying campaign but it just isn't actually DOING anything.

Allow me to make an extended metaphor: When I was in eighth grade, my teacher was picking on me and being mean to me for no reason whatsoever (She also did lots of other things like verbally sexually harass a male student and make us have silent reading for two hours while she went on Facebook on a school computer, but that's another tale for another day) so my mother and I did what we were supposed to and called the school to discuss what to do about the issue. Their solution was to send me to the guidance counsellor every day for an hour or so and they apparently reprimanded my teacher.

We talked a lot.

The teacher continued to make me miserable for the rest of the school year.

The closest thing to a solution that was ever offered was "Try to look at her in a different light" (I'll write a poem about that, and I'll call it "Different Ways of Looking At Being Humiliated in Front of My Class").After a month I said "To heck with this" and stopped going to the counselling sessions.

So really all it was was a whole lot of talking and not a lick of doing.

And that's what "Pink Shirt Day" is now, a whole lot of students prancing around in pink and not doing a bloody thing. Not even talking about it.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Single Sex Classrooms

Recently there's been some debate about single sex classrooms. For anyone who doesn't know, single sex classrooms is the general term applied to segregating schools by gender. Girls in one class, boys in another.

There are a lot of good arguments for single sex classrooms. The biggest one being that girls are two years ahead of boys in terms of development so segregating would allow more individualized attention to the different developmental stages. And that it would help subvert traditional gender roles because students would feel more free without the opposite sex around.

I have also heard of but cannot confirm the existence of a study that showed segregated students doing 10% better on tests. This was said by my slightly sexist English teacher from last year so I wouldn't pay too much attention to it.

I acknowledge the value of these arguments, but I have to disagree very strongly.

I've been a student for quite a while now, my academic progress has been hampered by bad teachers, bullies picking on me, and the crappy IEP system(I'll rant long and hard about this in a future post), but I cannot say that my academic progress has ever been hampered by the presence of males in my classroom. In fact, it probably was better but I'll explain that later.

Single sex classrooms worked just fine back in long-ago times when there was a San Andreas Fault between the sexes in society. When girls stayed home and sewed and cooked and cleaned and boys went out and worked. Society isn't like that anymore. Both sexes can go into the exact same careers. There's no reason to have separate education except for Physical Education in high school because of physiological differences.

We'd be doing all kids a great disservice if we had single sex education. Whether we like it or not, segregating schools will only cause tension and division in the student body.

While students may (I say this hesitantly because I don't believe it to be true) feel more willing to break free of traditional sex roles in the class room, being almost entirely separated from the opposite sex students in the school will the make them this unknown enigma that they don't get the opportunity to try to understand. And as we've seen many times, people often react to what they don't know about with fear and anger.

Socially it's a very bad idea. Most school-age students don't get much interaction with their peers outside of school. If they don't get opportunities to learn about the opposite sex while they're in school, even though they get recess together that's less than two hours out of an entire day, they'll probably never grow out of the "boys are stupid/girls are icky" thought process and we'll re-open the San Andreas Gender Fault even wider than it was originally.

And perhaps coeducation is slightly detrimental to their academics, BUT:
A) Everyone has to eventually LEAVE SCHOOL and go live their lives and whether you got an 80 or a 90 on your math tests isn't relevant to the big picture.
and B) Isn't this a bad attitude to enforce? "These people work differently than us so we won't work with them at all." Great life skill to teach there.

And let's be honest here. This environment will only breed extreme sexism and turn out a bunch of kids (unless they're parents teach them VERY strongly otherwise) who see the opposite sex as "less than".

More honesty: A large amount of middle school and high school age girls are extremely catty. Shoving 20-30 of them in classrooms together all day, with no balance of boys(who usually aren't catty, someone should do a scientific study on this. Or at least a documentary on The Passionate Eye.) will only amp up the social drama and decrease academic proficiency. Like girls don't get picked on enough.

As a female student, I would never ever EVER want to be a in a gender-segregated school. What may be slightly good academically speaking, is a horrible idea socially speaking. Life is all about balance, let's keep taking steps forward instead of taking 20 steps back.

Also, if your child is doing badly in school because there are members of the opposite sex in their class, you have bigger issues to sort out.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Homophobia and a bit of book banning.

(Kind of switch topics on you Meghan...Sorry! ^.^'' love you!)

So most people have probably heard at least someone say once (wither it be in the class, or outside of school) "That's so/ your so gay."

Well, what does that actually mean? Why do people use that sexuality to offend others?

Well...To answer the second question: Because people in schools (though it isn't As frequent nowadays) get harassed because of their sexuality, so others (usually the ones harassing people) then use that to offend others, who are most likely perfectly straight.

Now for the first question: What does being homosexual actually mean? Well..It means liking the same gender. Is that so horrible?

Well, I guess it is to a lot of people. And books with even a bit of "Sexual content" (I.e: A 'Disney' type kiss) is horrible and should be banned.

It's like "Yes children being exposed to pornography damages them BUT THIS ISN'T PORNOGRAPHY IT'S WORDS! JUST WORDS! Not even the whole book! Just a few select pages! If you have a kid who reads this books purely for the sex scenes, you have bigger problems! And to be blunt, most kids who are reading books usually aren't the "WOOHOO! DRUGS ALCOHOL SEX PARTYYYYYYY" crowd!" -Meghan (Over MSN today)

But honestly, back to the homophobia issue: Meghan found a few stupid posts by Ginny (cant spell her last name) on twitter...

"Being bombarded with taxpayers who are ready to come and fight against gay/porn for youth in our library tonite.8:53 AM Mar 3rd from web
Networked with many today. All on board regarding local library issue. Homosexual books for teens on shelves. Lots of reinforcements.2:52 PM Mar 1st from web
it gets worse
# Meeting with library director tonight to discuss homosexual books for little kids in our library. Step 2 in complaint process.3:38 PM Feb 25th from web
# Sean Penn must be proud of his win so he could advocate for gay marriage. ICK. Shut the TV off after THAT one.6:12 AM Feb 23rd from web
Referring to Sean Penn's speech when he got Best Actor Oscar for Milk." (sorry for the big clump of it.)

And she says it's not about homosexuality...Yeah...sure.

Anyways, I think I have tackled this issue enough and shall hopefully blog again soon! :D

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Rant Saturday!!

(Kitty is staying over at my house and forgot her password, so this is actually her post.)

Instead of ranting this Monday, I (Kitty) shall rant on Saturday this time! Again: Please be warned of...uh...coarse language.

And the topic?

Very simple: Ginny Maziarka.

Her posts relating to "Inappropriate" books is really pissing me off! I mean honestly! Like Boy Meets Boy (Refer to Meghan's previous blog post) It's more PG then most DISNEY MOVIES!!!

And her view on Obama? "So here's the deal. Compare the above and the following with a leader from past history. Pick anyone you like. I'll pick......Hitler." (Referring to the I pledge Video)

Pretty soon she'll be wanting to ban children! It'll go like this: Because of our children and wanting to protect them, we'll have to rate Disney movies 'R' for having a kiss scene, put certain stickers on Cd's for saying 'shoot', and National Geographic magazines will need parental permission for buying them!

So, why bother with it? Why don't we just ban children? I man, it would solve all our problems. We could actually be fully free after banning children! They're the source of the problems!

Anyways, back to the Obama problem. In the I Pledge video, she tells us how controversial people are with their pledges:
"To reduce my use of plastic … use less bottled water … plant 500 trees this year … to be more green … to no longer use plastic bags at the grocery store" Because helping to save the environment is soo horrible.
"I pledge to sell my obnoxious car and buy a hybrid." Yup, helping the environment and economy is the worst thing in the world.
"I pledge to be of service to Barack Obama." Yup, that's controversial all right...Promising to be of service to Obama. That makes perfect sense.

Back to the Hitler issue,


Right, because the similarities are immense.:
"The evidence that Obama = Hitler is pretty convincing. Consider: they both have brown hair, two syllables in their first name, and are taller than 5'5" yet shorter than 6'5". If that isn't evidence enough, consider that both men, celebrated Christmas, wears glasses, gives flowers to their wives, and so on. Srsly, folks, you don't have to be a dining room table to make the connection."
From Sleepless In West Bend.

"As I said earlier as well... The Nazi's also liked labeling things (Jews with the Star of David) and putting them in their own sections (concentration camps), just like Ginny."-DanBack.

"Ginny thinks any comment that doesn't buy the line of crap she is selling is disrespectful. I have a screenshot of some of the comments she has deleted - things as horribly disrespectful as' The 2nd open challenge has been issued: Please explain your objection to the completely non-sexual "Heather Has Two Mommies", and tell us what you want the library to do with it.

Pretty tame, huh? It's not like the person called her a fat homophobic Nazi bookslut. Which she totally isn't, and it would be totally wrong to call her that."-DanBack (again...Man I love that guy.)

Now back to the rant.

She says she's protecting our children from things like gays, lesbians, and all those good people, and prevents children from being exposed to things that aren't good for children in PUBLIC libraries.

She needs to think, just once about what she's doing. A library is for everyone not just for her. If she doesn't like what books are in the library GET THE HELL OVER IT! If one book may not be good for her, may help someone else. But she never thinks about that. I bet she doesn't even bother reading any of the books she tries to ban. (Or 'challenge') She just reads the blurb and says "Oh, this seems bad...I'd better try and get this banned."

And now for my conclusion: Thank you very much for reading this (If you haven't stopped half way through) and have a good...few days? Week? Whenever Either me or Meghan decide to post next. (hopefully soon) So now..Goodbye!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Illegal locker?

Well, as our readers know we've been talking a lot about banned books. Well, what do you do when there are books you or your friends want to read, and can't access them at school? Very simple.


Back? Good. Well, some people might think that it's not such a good idea, because you could get in trouble. Heck, I even think that. But it is a good idea for anyone else who would like to read classics, and other very good books like 'Harry Potter' 'Interview With the Vampire' 'The Outsiders' (see my last post) and many, many others.

I personally think it's great if someone has the guts to take a stand and actually do something about banning books. Kudos to her.

Either you agree with that or not, you have got to admit she has guts. So, I leave you with this: No matter who you are, what country you come from, or what race you are from, you deserve the right to any book you wish.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Boy Meets Boy Meets Censorship?

Hello! Today I'll be reviewing David Levithan's Boy Meets Boy novel and investigate why it has been challenged.

I read Boy Meets Boy and loved it. It's happy, well-written, romantic, feel-good story about high school sophmore Paul trying to win the affections of his sweetheart Noah. It's a good book with popular appeal.

It's also completely G-rated. There is kissing of the Disney Princess movie style, and there is one comment refrencing a overprotective mother thinking Paul will start "ravishing her son right there on the table" if she she doesn't keep coming in the room every five minutes, this is meant in sarcastic jest. I would have no problem whatsoever giving this to a ten year old or younger.

So why the challenge in West Bend, Wisconsin? (Although I'm unfortunately sure it's been challenged in other places)

Simple: It portrays LGBTQ lifestyles in a positive, affirming light.

Boy Meets Boy takes place in what was accurately described in one review as a "gaytopia." Everyone is completely free to be who they are and love who they want. There is no judgement, no homophobia, no angst. Save for one character whose parents are ultra-religous and not accepting of their sons' homosexuality, but even this gets a somewhat happy ending.

Other than that, there is NOTHING objectionable in the entire book. If you disapprove of anything LGBTQ then you should be able to see that this is a gay-affirming book by simply reading the description on the back, is that so hard?

This is one of the most ridiculous book challenges I have ever heard of (second to To Kill A Mockingbird being challenged because of the racial epithets used). This is not "sexually explicit" because there is nothing sexual in it. If anyone challenges it on these grounds it only shows that they haven't even read the book.

So I challenge you to go find a copy of Boy Meets Boy and read it. Because it's an excellant book, and you should form your own opinion on it, and David Levithan is cool.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Reviewing "The Outsiders"

Welcome back!

Alright, this time I'm going to be doing a review on "The Outsiders" by S.E. Hinton, and why people want it banned.

I had the book read out loud in class and every time we ended it was like I was in my own little dream world, but every time we started reading it I kind of stared in front of me, visualizing what was going on. It literally hypnotized me.

Why, you may ask, would people want this book banned? Well very simple reasons.

I have looked around and basically it was challenged to be banned because of the slang it uses. Such as:

Greasers: Low income families that greaser their hair back.
Socs: High income, rich, mostly stuck up families.
Booze: Any type of alcohol.
Cooler: Jail.
Cancer stick: Cigarette.
Weed: Marijuana.
Hacked off: Anger/ upset.
Heater: pistol.
Fly: Attractive.
Fuzz: Police.
Jumped: Attacked.
Lightening up: Lighting a cigarette.
Lone it: To leave someone, some thing alone.
Rank: A gross stench, something unusual.
Rolled: To rob.
Rumble: Deadly fight between gangs.
Scrap: To fight.
Tuff: Cool, with it

The next most common reasons for the book being challenged is the teenage violence in the book. Parents generally worry that their children are being exposed to things they aren't prepared for and insist their schools pull it from the curriculum, though some say it promotes unchristian values, but most people that make such a claim haven't read the book themselves, and go mostly on what others say (That probably want the book banned in the first place).

Another reason is that most of the characters were from "Broken homes" either parents fighting, totally ignoring the kid, or many other reasons. I personally think it's an irrelevant reason to want the book banned. So what if the kid is having trouble at home? It's a character? What do you think it's going to do to your child? Make them want to start a fight with their role model? I think not.

Another big reason though, for it being banned is under-age drinking. I agree with that reason, but the book is intended for older kids, around probably grade 7 or 8. Not your nine-year-old daughter.

Over-all this is a very good book, though intended for more mature audiences. Hinton's writing was phenomenal, and over-all hypnotizing, despite the "Bad things" in this book.

Interview With The Librarian.

Well, today Meghan and I went to our local library to see one of the librarian's who worked there. (Privacy issues shall keep her name anonymous.) We discussed the book banning issue and had a few other issues with her and here is what was said.

Question: How long have you been a children's librarian?
Answer: A children's librarian 11 years. A typical librarian? ...More than 11 years.

Question: Has anyone ever requested that any material be removed, banned or otherwise restricted?
Answer: That's a regular occurrence in every library, hundreds of thousands. And the most challenged book? The Bible. Though we have people requesting the books to not be banned but to simply be moved to a different section.

Question: How did you respond to that?
Answer: The library has a very formal, detailed procedure. First they have to identify themselves and why they want to book removed. It takes a lot of people to formally remove a book, but that's a big step, and hardly anyone asks for a book to be formally removed, more often they challenge.

Question: What are your opinions on book censorship?
Answer: I don't believe in book censorship. It's a yes or no answer for librarians. We have very adamant freedom of speech. I have read Lot's of books, some I don't care much for, but I will "fight to the death" for them to be in the library because it's some one's opinion, or point of view.
Though we won't have hateful literature in our libraries.

Question: Do you think that parents should be responsible for what their children read and nobody Else's?
Answer: Yes a child's parent's word is final. We encourage parents to read with their children. They have the right to know what their children are reading, just like when your parents read picture books to you when you were little, they knew what you were reading.

Question: Any other comments on this issue?
Answer: Well, it's been going on since books were being published, because some people think books are threatening, and want to get rid of the threat, so the books have been challenged. Those people have the Right to their opinion.

And that's pretty much all we did with our beloved children's librarian. Thank you for reading and have a good day.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Interview With A Local Bookseller

Hi, today I interviewed the owners of our local bookstore (names will be withheld for privacy). I was very, very nervous (despite the fact I've known these people forever). I apologize that it isn't very in-depth but it was nearly closing time and I didn't want to keep them from their dinner. But I did it and here it is:

Q: How long have you owned this store?
A: Owner A: Since 1991.

Q: Has anyone ever requested any material to be removed, banned or otherwise restricted from your store?
A: Owner A: Some people were questioning, but no.

Q: If someone did, how would you respond?
A: Owner A: I would try to get as much information as I could as to why they wanted it removed, and if I didn't want it removed I would tell them why.
Owner B: You've got to have books for everyone.

Q: What are your opinions on book censorship?
A: Owner A: I think because we have freedom of speech in our country everyone has to have their opinions. I don't think we need censorship because we have laws to prevent people from publishing things that are harmful or not fair or untruthful.

Q: Do you agree parents should be responsible for their own children and no one elses?
A: Owner A: Yes, exactly. It's important parents are responsible for their own kids and the state takes care of the laws.

Q: Can a book truly be classified as "vulgar" since what's vulgar to some may not be to others?
A: Owner B: Well yes, because of the language and such there are books here I wouldn't like but then someone could come in and say "Oh, that's my favourite!"

Q: Any other comments you'd like to make on this issue?
A: Owner B: We believe in a democratic country and we have a multicultural country and we believe in human rights.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Banned Books Week Extravaganza

Hello everyone, Banned Books Week has begun! We will be doing many posts throughout the week including:
- an interview with the local children's/young adult librarian
- an interview with a local bookseller
- fighting censorship on the small scale
- and a few other interesting things

And as for the argument that "No book has been banned in 50 years!" The term Banned Books Week is meant to be symbolic. I mean really, try saying Censored, Removed, Re-shelved, Burned, Challenged and Banned Books Week ten times fast. The lovely Censorship-Free Libraries blog made an excellent post about this recently.

I'm also celebrating Banned Books Week by reading Looking For Alaska by John Green and The Chocolate War by Robert Cormier. I'm nearly a quarter through Looking for Alaska and I have this to say: Pornography my big toe.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed, Something Rainbow

Hi there! Welcome to yet another blog.

Today I'm tackling a hotly-debated issue: Gay marriage. also known as same-sex marriage or gender-neutral marriage.

Gay marriage is legal in Canada, Belgium, Spain, Sweden, the Netherlands, and Norway. It is also performed in in the United States in Conneticut, Iowa, Massachusetts, and Vermont. Gay marriage will also be legal in New Hampshire on January 1st 2010, and the issue is in flux in Maine.

A lot of people disagree with gay marriage. Some of them say marriage is between one man and one woman, some say it goes against God, some say children will be affected, some say domestic partnerships and other things like them are just as good, and still others say gay marriage would open the doors for legalized polygamy and bestiality.

As for me, I'm for it and I'll tell you why.

First of all, gay marriage doesn't do a thing to heterosexual marriage. Gay marriage advocates aren't saying "Gays should get married but heterosexuals can't." Including people doesn't mean excluding other people. No one is forcing any religous institutions to allow gay marriages in their places of worship, no one is forcing anyone to go to gay weddings, heck, you don't even have to LIKE gay people. But two people getting married doesn't affect you in the slightest. So really, there's nothing to get into a kerfuffle about.

Second of all, not everyone is religous. And not everyone who is religous is anti-gay marriage. Although I cannot speak for other nations, in democracies like Canada and the U.S., church and state are seperate entities for good reason. We are patchwork cultures and to allow one belief system to take precedent over thousands of others simply isn't fair.

If you think homosexuality goes against God, that's okay. You're allowed to be. But you have no right to impose your beliefs on everyone else. Your beliefs are your beliefs and you are entitled to them as much as everyone else is.

Thirdly, in regards to children in the public school system being "indoctrinated" into the "gay agenda," I disagree with that. Children are merely taught to be accepting of different people and even if they do not agree with them, not to harass them or bring them harm. I don't see a problem with this. We've seen the effects bullying can have on children, we should do everything possible to help stamp it out rather than keep it going. If you feel so strongly that your children are being "indoctrinated" homeschool them or send them to private school. Better yet, teach them to think for themselves.

As for children of gay couples being affected I also disagree with this. A child's well-being has to do with if their parents treat them right and love them rather than the gender or number of their parents. If a child is raised in a loving home he or she should turn out just fine. Just because they are "missing a female/male role model at home" doesn't mean they'll grow up warped. Children's lives extend outside the home and the gender of their role models has squat to do with the lessons they pass on.

When it comes to domestic partnerships, civil unions, and other similar-but-not-quite "marriage" options for gay couples, to be frank, I think they're a bunch of baloney. And more than little offensive. They're basically saying "Here, since you want to get married so badly we'll give you something similar, but we won't let you get actually married because you're not as good as heterosexual couples." Ouch.

As for gay marriage opening the door to legalized polygamy and bestiality: That is quite possibly the biggest bunch of baloney I have ever heard. Whoever came up with this stuff needs a hobby.

I hear a lot of talk about the "gay agenda" being "well-advanced" up here in the Great White North and I'm still trying to figure out what this means. On July 20th, 2005, gay marriage was legalized in Canada. Much celebrating was done. Gays got married. They still get married. I do not see an issue here. Nothing bad has happened, Canada has not spontaneously "turned gay" or blown up, or anything. Pretty scary huh?

And my last, and most important reason for my support of gay marriage is this:


Love is love is love is love. Whose to say which love is valid and which isn't? Nobody. I've seen plenty of heterosexual couples who get married for all the wrong reasons and end up on reality TV shows trying to fix it. Two consenting adults should have the right to marry each other. It's their choice. It hurts no one. They deserve the legal benefits of marriage just as much as anyone else.

I am proud to live in a country that has gay marriage but I know there are many people who don't. I hope someday all free nations will allow gays to get married. Until then, feel free to come up North for a slightly chilly destination wedding ;)!

Monday, September 14, 2009

Rant Mondays!


Thank you for joining me for another Rant Monday! Hopefully I can do this weekly instead sorry I've been really busy with other unimportant things.


Yes...Let's see this weeks (hopefully..) topic is, shall we?


Alright let's get started.

First off let me just say this: Homophobic's are probably the most insensitive, naive, stupid people I have ever heard of. (never met them thank god.)

Homosexuals, bisexuals and heterosexuals have almost all the same organs. We all have a brain, heart, digestive, respiratory, circulatory and all those systems. So what makes us different? Well..Le's make a list of why being gay, having gay friends and gay marriage is wrong.

1. It's dangerous. Totally...A lesbian couple is going to spontaneously get pregnant. and a gay couple is too!

2. It gives children the wrong idea. What? That having friends of the same gender is wrong? Wonderful.

3. Homosexuals shouldn't have public affection. And neither should heterosexuals, but they do it anyways! They should get arrested for 'public affection' and 'public exposure.'

4. Children will ask questions. .....Pretty much your saying that asking questions is wrong. "Your son Billy has failed math...Have you been helping him with his homework?" "Well, I don't think he needs help because he never asks."

Now I have a link of why gay marriage is wrong:

Back? good. Now wasn't that just the BEST 50 reasons why gay marriage is wrong? Yeah...I thought so too.

Well I don't think I really have anything else to add except: Thank you for reading, sorry it was so short and GOOD NIGHT!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Some Additional Resources

Hello all. sorry we've been absent for so long. Life kind of got in the way of the internet. But we're back!

We've decided we've said as much as we can about book banning/censorship for the time being and it's time to move on to other issues. This blog is called Tolerance after all, we have a lot of issues to cover (believe me, we've got plenty of ideas). We will probably return to it at some point though, but not unless a new problem needs commentary. And for our Banned Books Week (September 26-October 3, 2009)

So here's some extra websites, blogs and videos about book banning if you still have a hankering:

Absolutely hillarious, a teeny bit of mild language.

Very interesting website! Very thorough.

Lots of ideas for participating in Banned Books Week.

Info right from the source, and the manifesto (Here: is especially excellent.

Two excellent blogs.

That's all for now, thanks for reading!

Sunday, August 23, 2009

The Children Think For Themselves

A common reason used for banning, removing, reclassifying, labeling or restricting books is that the controversial content within them will come into the hands of children.

This is usually used on Young Adult books, not adult books. So I'll be talking about YA books for this particular post.

Most libraries have a children's section and a young adult(or teen) section separate from eachother. The teen section is usually classified as 12 or 13 and up. There's an obvious reason for this, teens are very different from children, in interests, behaviours, experiences and especially maturity. The books reflect this. That's why the YA section is separate from the children's section to begin with.

I already covered mature content in my 'Perks of Being A Wallflower' post so I won't go on about that again.

The YA section is usually near the children's section and quite a few people seem to worry about children wandering into the YA section and reading books that aren't appropriate for them. That doesn't happen. Maybe once in a blue moon but it's hardly a common occurence. Why?

1) Children that should be reading books in the children's section aren't going to be interested in books in the YA section. They're usually of considerable length, have no pictures, are above their reading level, and often have pretty dull covers (Side note: Can we stop giving publishers stock photos of teenage girls in tank tops? Please?). They are designed to be marketed to teens, not children.

2) Children know what's inappropriate for them. A bit of personal experience here. When I was a wee one, I was honestly a little scared of the "Young Adult" and "Adult" sections. It's children's logic, "Adult means grown-up. Those are for grown-ups, they must be scary." Maybe that was just me, but most children understand what "adult" means.

3) If it bothers them, they'll put it down. Kids may not have had much life experience, but they're definitly smart enough to stop reading something if they don't like it. If it bothers them, they'll stop reading it and move onto something else. Simple as that. I did this once or twice when I was little, although the books I put down were "Scary story" books but it takes all kinds.

So frankly, all this "Think of the children!" jabber needs to stop. for the reasons above and because it's simply an excuse for censorship. If you're concerned about your children reading something inappropriate, go with them to the library and supervise them. I've said it before and I'll say it again: The public library is there to serve EVERYONE, what you consider inappropriate someone else will consider wonderful, and it is YOUR job to parent YOUR children.

Our local library actually has a policy that says that no children under 9 years of age are allowed to be left alone in the library unsupervised. Thank you.

P.S. Angel_of_Death and I are going on holiday this upcoming weekend and school starts shortly after that. Our blog posts will be slightly less frequent but we'll try to update often. Cheers :)!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

The importance of "Inappropriate" puberty books.

We all have either asked 'certain' questions that lead to one talk or another either about sex, or puberty. Such as: "Where do babies come from." Or "Why does my brother/sister have different parts than I do?"

Well, what if you, as a mother/father/older sibling don't want to give that talk to your son/daughter/younger sibling? What will you tell them?

The easiest thing in my opinion to do in that situation is hand the asker a book about puberty and other things about growing uh. Making sure it's age appropriate is important You wouldn't want to mentally scar your 6 year old.

Though nowadays with book banners running wild everywhere it's hard to find a decent book that hasn't been banned. Especially books about sex and/or puberty.

But what would happen if all the puberty books in libraries and book stores were banned? You'd probably have to give "The talk" to the asker sooner than you wanted to.

I know my co-writer Meghan showed me a web page (Which, I regret to say, I don't remember where it was) and I mother wrote this "I don't want to talk to my kids about puberty until after their married." A little ironic, eh?

But what if everybody lived by that rule? Girls aged 10-18 would start bleeding and have no clue what was wrong with them, and, if they were home alone, they would probably start freaking out and call 9-1-1, just to learn it's their period and it would happen once a month until they hit menopause.

Then there would be boys. They would wake up in the middle of the night, sweating and their bed would be wet. They would most likely get extremely embarrassed because they think they've gone back to when they were 6 and still wet the bed. And maybe, just maybe, they would look don in the middle of science class and see they had a lump in their groin of their pants and would think that something is wrong, freak out, call home, and then they would have to have a talk with their parents about growing up, just to find out it's nothing too serious.

Over the years, many puberty/sex books have been attempted to be banned by book banners everywhere such as "It's Perfectly Normal" It's a very animated puberty book that describes your body and how it grows up. It's designed for third-sixth graders. In my opinion (Though I've only read one page from I find it 95% appropriate for the age group. I'm only against the masturbation for the younger crowds because most parents don't want to walk in one their third grade son masturbating in the living room, only to hear his explanation is "The book Mr. Smith read today said this was perfectly fine!"

So in conclusion, my opinion is this: Puberty books and growing up is just a way of life. You don't have to show your kids those books, just don't try and get them banned because you don't like them. They are extremal helpful for any parent/guardian that doesn't want to talk with their kids about it, and help many children, young and old understand things much better.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

'The Perks Of Being A Wallflower' In Detail

*WARNING! MAJOR SPOILERS FOR The Perks of Being A Wallflower*

Of all the banned books out there, there are a few that are a bit like the middle school nerds of the book world. Others may get an occasional insult, these ones get tripped in the hall and have their lunches stolen.

One in particular is Stephen Chbosky's The Perks of Being A Wallflower, published in 1999 it is widely acclaimed and considered a modern classic of Young Adult literature. It's about a high school freshman named Charlie who is the titular "wallflower" and the very realistic good, bad and ugly experiences he goes through.

So why is it challenged so often? Sexual content, drug use, underage drinking and smoking, and profanity. In this blog I shall pick through this various controversial passages (I'm not going into paragraphs of detail over each one but expect this one to be a long one) and tell you why they are important to the story and why this book is important to teens.

Let's start with sexual content since that seems to be the largest issue.

To say there's a lot of sex in the book is less than half-accurate. There are many references to teenagers having sex, but these references are non-descriptive, brief and really no different than in the movies where two people kiss and fall backwards onto a bed holding each other just before the screen fades to black. (Example: "When most people left, Brad and Patrick went into Patrick's room. They had sex for the first time that night. I don't want to go into detail about it because it's pretty private stuff, but I will say that Brad assumed the role of the girl in terms of where you put things. I think that's pretty important to tell you. When they were finished, Brad started to cry really hard...") There a few sexual jokes. also non-descriptive, as jokes tend to be. a couple of brief descriptions of masturbation. There is kissing.

Really there are only three in-depth sexual scenes. The first is a flashback to when Charlie was younger and his older sister threw a party while their parents were away. She instructs Charlie to stay put in his room. Two drunken friends of his sister, a boy and a girl, stumble into his room and ask if they can use it. Charlie agrees. The girl and boy start making out, and eventually the boy forces the girl to perform oral sex on him. This scenario is only stopped when Charlie's sister comes in the room the bring Charlie some chips and the two get embarrassed and leave (pages 30-31). Charlie later, in the present, realizes what he witnessed was a rape (page 32).

Another is when Charlie and Mary Elizabeth make out and by the end of it they are both shirtless and have done "everything from the stomach up" but don't go any farther (pages 126-127).

The last is between Sam and Charlie in Sam's room. They make out, remove their shirts and stop when Sam touches his groin (on top of clothes) because it makes Charlie realize that his Aunt Helen sexually molested him when he was young (pages 202-205).

If anyone reads these passages and finds them sexually arousing, they need to talk with a counsellor. None of the truly sexual activity (i.e. aside from kissing) is approved of. It is all presented in a realistic way and the consequences are rarely good. Brad is the victim of homophobia-incited assault by his father when he catches Brad and Patrick having sex. Brad is extremely hurt by this and incites a homophobic attack on Patrick in the school cafeteria. Charlie's sister gets pregnant by her physically abusive boyfriend and has an abortion.

There is a lot of drug usage, a fair bit of underage drinking and underage smoking. This isn't condoned either, it made crystal clear this behaviour is completely unhealthy.

None of this behaviour; abuse, drinking, smoking, drugs, teenage sex, homophobia, is presented as a good thing. It is merely presented, and realistically. Whether we like or not, some teenagers have sex, do drugs, smoke, swear like sailors, drink and do hurtful things to others. You cannot control all teenagers your teen(s) come in contact with. Just as the way meteorologists cannot predict every little gust of wind to make a completely accurate forecast.

The only thing you can do is talk with your teen(s) and educate them on why drugs, underage drink, underage smoking, abusing others and doing sexual things before you are ready is bad and they can do to avoid these things and make good choices.

But not every teen has people in their life to tell them these things, or maybe they do but they make very human mistakes. That's why we need books like this, to tell teens there is a light at the end of the tunnel and if they can make the right choices, it won't be an oncoming train. This book does advocate good things: dating for love, reading, intelligence and friendships.

A lot of people argue that is isn't appropriate for children. It isn't appropriate for children. It isn't appropriate for children at all.

It is appropriate for TEENS alright? TEENS. Young Adults, youths, adolescents, teenyboppers. I thought we made this distinction a long time ago. and kids don't walk into the Young Adult section, but I'll cover this in a future post (a very near future post).

I think The Perks of Being a Wallflower is well-written, beautifully told and is an important book. But I highly encourage you to read it and form your own opinion. Maybe you won't like it all. Maybe you'll think it's awful and would never let your kids read it. and that's okay. Because just as you don't have any right to restrict it from anyone's view, you have as much right to not like it and tell your kids it isn't acceptable in your house. If you got it from the library; return it. If you bought it; sell it, donate it, throw it out, turn it into avant-garde paper sculpture if you please.

(Just please don't burn it. It's stupid and if nothing else you're making yourself look like an ignorant moron.)

Monday, August 10, 2009

Rant Mondays!~


Welcome all to the first ever Rant Mondays! This is Kitty with this week's topic: book Banning.

Yes, a very broad topic, but just to break it down: Why Book Banners suck!

Have you ever waited for days, weeks, or months for an author to come out with the next book in your favourite series? Most people probably have, but what happens when a book banner gets to it first? CHAOS!!!!!!! It would probably go something like this:

1. A deranged mother (A.K.A Book Banner) buys the book before you can buy it first, and reads it.
2. She finishes the book and starts off thinking 'This isn't the best book I've read...And it's a little inappropriate for my Son and/or daughter(s)'
3. She tells her child(ren) they aren't allowed to read the book because it's too "Mature" for them.
4. The child(ren) go and read the book anyway.
5. The deranged mother (A.K.A. Book Banner) finds out and grounds them
6. She then thinks 'If my child(ren) read this book, even though I told them not to, and I thought it was inappropriate, mothers everywhere must think the same thing as I do.'
7. The mother goes and tells her friends how "Horrible" and "Inappropriate" this book is.
8. The friends agree with her.
9. They join an alliance and go and take on the library/book store about the book.
10. There's a big commotion about that one book on the news or somewhere public.
11. Your own mother reads about it and takes the Book Banner's biased side and tells you you aren't allowed to get that book.
12. And you, being the "Wonderful" "Angel" Child, don't get that book, you can't finish your favourite series, and your life then spirals downward, forcing you to go into a depression and your life ends sooner than you wanted to, all because one mother (Or a small herd of Book Banners) didn't like the book, and thought it wasn't appropriate for anyone.

While on the topic of "Inappropriate" books, let's make a list of some books that "Should" Be banner and why. In the eyes of a book banner.

Breaking Dawn. Yes, it 100% sucks! I personally don't like it what so ever, but we aren't going from my point of view, we're going from a book banners view. So, why should Breaking Dawn be banned? Well....
1. "It has sexual content." Oh yes, blanking out before a sex scene is going to mentally scar your children.
2. "It contains violence." Yes, because some invisible force hitting an invisible force Field is perfect for an "M" rated game.
3. "It promotes stalking." There's no sarcastic comment I can really make...That is kind of true...
4. "Pregnancy and marriage at a young age." They're vampires...They have thousands of years to work on their crappy relationSHIT, and fight in front of the little accident they made because vampire sperm is so acidic to latex.
These are all very good reasons to ban Breaking Dawn but do the Book Banner's ban this book? (try saying that sentence ten times fast.) No. Why? "Because it is a international best seller and kids seem to be enjoying it. Even though I've never read it, I don't want to spoil it for other children who might read this book. Instead, let's go read some random book from the young adult not children's section of the library and see what that's like and find stupid reasons to ban that book, that some children will read."

Harry Potter. I love it! I've seen all the movies and read most of the books, so please note I'm talking about the first 5 books, not the sixth or seventh. (Because it isn't right for someone to talk about the "Inappropriate" things in books without actually reading them.)
1. "It promotes witchcraft." .....No shit Sherlock! It's a book of magic! Of wizards and witches! Oh yes, your sooo going to get unicorns and pixies in a book that deals with a magic school.
2. "Descriptive sexual content." Kissing....And Harry talking about it later should be in the porno section of the adult section in a book store.
3. "It's not a good example for our children, who really like the books and the movies. It encourages homosexuality" (Please note! This quote was found on Wikipedia! Found here: And what? If your homophobic, get over it. Don't read it yourself, but don't try and ban it from a PUBLIC LIBRARY just because you don't like the book.
4. "It's extremly violent." Yes, yes it is. But it doesn't really have that much blood or gore, and it isn't very descriptive of how or what the wound looked liked/how bad it was bleeding.
The sad part is, this amazing series is trying to be banned from libraries all the time, no clue why, except for those few reasons...And those are GREAT reasons to ban a good series.

So in conclusion, remember this is rant Mondays, when the professionalism part of my brain goes to the very back of my head and the rantingness comes to the front. Please don't take anything too seriously, because most of these things are sarcastic. Thank you and have a good, fucking day. =D

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Book Banning and the Stupidity Thereof

Hello there! Meghan here to talk to you about book banning. Which will be a very constant subject on this blog.

Book banning is when one person or a group of people try to remove a book for any number of reasons from a public library, school library, class reading list, or occasionally a bookstore for various reasons. Usually because of sexual or homosexual content that is perceived is "indecent." Books are most often made unavailable to children through this method, without restricting access for adults.

Book banning is not a modern invention. Throughout history, books (most often religious texts) have been banned and even burned (book burnings still happen today, even in North America, twisted huh?). In the Tudor era, Protestants burnt the Lutheran version of the Bible (and the Lutherans themselves if they refused to convert, but that's an entirely different can of worms) because they considered the teachings to be heresy.

Examples of books most commonly challenged in the United States at the moment include To Kill A Mockingbird, Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret, The Color Purple, and The Outsiders.

I personally think book banning is absolutely ridiculous and it's reasoning is flawed. Besides that, it violates civil rights of free speech (at least in Canada and the United States, I'm not sure of laws in other countries). If you do not like the content in a book, you do not have to read it. I repeat, YOU DO NOT HAVE TO READ IT. Isn't free will great?

It bugs me even more when it involves a public library. Specifically people trying to remove a book or relocate it from the children or young adult section to a special "reserve shelf" or the adult's section.

Before I continue I'm going to politely ask you to watch this video, I'll wait until you finish:

Back? Good.

I don't have a problem with someone thinking a particular book or a group of books isn't appropriate for their children. But a public library is for THE PUBLIC. Meaning EVERYONE. Meaning OTHER PEOPLE WHO OFTEN HAVE DIFFERENT BELIEFS THAN YOUR OWN. And nobody has any right to say "This book is inappropriate for all children who visit this library ". Because the same book that would be inappropriate for your child might really help another. That's why there are books about abuse, rape, drugs, alcohol, sex, homosexuality and bisexuality, because there are kids out there who don't have anyone to talk to and they need these kinds of books. That's why they belong on the shelves.

So, instead of removing a book from the library or putting it on a special reserve shelf that requires parental permission to check out, how about actually going to the library with your children and making sure what they're checking out is appropriate for your household?

And putting that responsibility on the librarians is stupid. The librarians are there to do their job, not act in loco parentis for your children or anyone's children. They are there to serve everyone, not just you.

We may not like what we hear or see or read but we have the ability to not listen or not look. Books are ideas, banning a book is the same as putting tape over someone's mouth.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009


Meghan: Hello all! Welcome to Tolerance!

Kitty: Hope you enjoy this blog with rants, free speech and other amazing, super cool, totally awesome, sweet things like that! =D

M: Thank you for that long line of adjectives Kitty. On this blog we'll be discussing issues such as censorship, book banning and bigotry.

K: We REALLY hope you enjoy this, even if some on posts will be more, uh...profanity-laden... (K: meaning...? M: cursing...-.- K: I see!) ANYWAYS

M: We'll try to be professional most of the time, aside from Rant Mondays!...Which will be Kitty's job. Because who doesn't need a little rant on a Monday?

K: Just pleased be warned that my ranting will contain much cursing and please dont be offended by anything! =)

M: We'll also be doing some interviews of people related to the various topics on this blog, so stay tuned!

K: Until next Time! This is Kitty, signing off! *Feels like a news reporter*

M: We aren't news reporters -.-! Bye for now!