OK, banned books week is basically a week to get out how people should be able to read any book they want. See, libraries and schools ban some books for whatever reasons, which is not fair. Anyone should be able to read anything. Now, I know that sometimes people don’t like books because they involive sex, drugs, politics, religious, sexist, ect. views or certain four letter words. But, people should have the right to decide that for themselves.

Now, many people will just celebrate and get out their favorite banned books (Harry Potter! The giver!) but some have been banned that we don’t even notice for find even remotely troubling – which is very troubling.

Just to make this known..here are the top ten challenged books list of 2009:

1. ttyl; ttfn; l8r, g8r (series), by Lauren Myracle
Reasons: drugs, nudity, offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group
2. And Tango Makes Three, by Peter Parnell and Justin Richardson
Reasons: homosexuality
3. The Perks of Being A Wallflower, by Stephen Chbosky
Reasons: anti-family, drugs, homosexuality, offensive language, religious viewpoint, sexually explicit, suicide, unsuited to age group
4. To Kill A Mockingbird, by Harper Lee
Reasons: offensive language, racism, unsuited to age group
5. Twilight (series) by Stephenie Meyer
Reasons: religious viewpoint, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group
6. Catcher in the Rye, by J.D. Salinger
Reasons: offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group
7. My Sister’s Keeper, by Jodi Picoult
Reasons: homosexuality, offensive language, religious viewpoint, sexism, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group, violence
8. The Earth, My Butt, and Other Big, Round Things, by Carolyn Mackler
Reasons: offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group
9. The Color Purple, by Alice Walker
Reasons: offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group
10. The Chocolate War, by Robert Cormier
Reasons: nudity, offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group

I can’t get across enough how completely terrible BBW is. It’s like saying you can’t listen to Eminem because it curses in it. Everyone should have the right to decide what they read, in school and out without having people telling them this and that about how they shouldn’t read it.

Oh, and here are 10 ways to celebrate banned books week yourself :) Taken from this site:

  1. Classic Challenges: Books commonly taught in secondary schools show up again and again on the American Library Association’s most frequently challenged list. Why are some books challenged year after year? Find out why and then “adopt” a banned book like “The Catcher in the Rye” or “To Kill a Mockingbird” by investigating its history of challenges. (For example, a site search for “Huckleberry Finn” on nytimes.com reveals the 1885 editorial “Trashy and Vicious,” republished from The Springfield Republican, on the Concord Library’s ban of the book. You’ll also find a 1902 letter from Mark Twain on the Omaha Public Library’s ban.) Then promote a “read-in” of one or more challenged or banned books in your school library.
  2. Don’t Read This!: Scan this list. What do these books have in common? Are you surprised to see that they are the Top 100 Banned/Challenged Books for 2000-2009? Use Anna Quindlen’s Op-Ed from 1994 as the model for an essay about personal experiences reading banned books and thoughts about book banning in general. We also invite you to answer our Student Opinion question, “Are There Books That Should Be Banned From Your School Library?”
  3. Big Name Bans: Did you know that “Harry Potter” topped the library association’s list of most challenged books in the year 2000? Other recent frequently challenged books include the “Twilight” series and “The Perks of Being a Wallflower.” Learn more about recent challenges and then create posters to promote intellectual freedom using some of the titles. One idea: Create a collage of book jackets of some of the most famous banned books. Another: Create a map of challenges, to demonstrate that book bans and challenges are not isolated phenomena, even in the United States. Ask to hang the posters in the school or local library.
  4. Join the Club: Create book clubs around banned books. To investigate titles for your club to read, you might use the Books section, including the drop-down menus for finding book reviews and coverage of featured authors. Then hold book “pitches” and form club reading schedules. As you read, respond to the texts, and then execute a final project, either individually or as a group.
  5. Blog All About It: Read this article featuring a New Jersey family that blogs together about books and encourages support of Banned Books Week. Choose a banned title to read as a family. Discuss it over dinner and/or online together. Include far-flung extended family by blogging or writing literary letters.
  6. ‘Speak’ or Not?: This week, a university professor, Wesley Scroggins, attacked Laurie Halse Anderson’s “Speak” as “soft pornography” in The Springfield News-Leader of Missouri. Ms. Halse Anderson responded on her blog, as did the teacher and blogger Donalyn Miller on The Book Whisperer Blog. Read the blog posts and discuss both positions. What is “soft pornography”? Should teenagers, as novelist and Harvard student Isabel Kaplan argues in her Huffington Post post, read books with such content? Adapt this 2006 lesson on a book ban in the Miami-Dade school system to study the controversy and write letters to The News-Leader expressing your opinion about the issues raised in the debate. Decide whether or not you want to read “Speak” yourself.
  7. Librarians for Liberty: Have you ever been caught reading under the covers? So was the late Judith Krug, the librarian who created Banned Books Week –- and her mother’s reaction to what she was reading taught her a lesson about having the freedom to read that later translated into her passion for the First Amendment and intellectual freedom. Learn more about Ms. Krug and consider the role of libraries in our democracy. What are the implications of book banning? What role do librarians and libraries play – even in the digital age –- in protecting intellectual freedom? Work with school or local librarians to plan a Banned Books Week event -– perhaps a read-a-thon or book festival, featuring banned books, with proceeds to benefit the library. Be sure to thank your librarians for the important work they do.
  8. Protective Policies: See how librarians at the Brooklyn Public Library handle challenges to books and other creative works in their collection, and read some sample requests for reconsideration and responses. Consider the fact that different people find different books “detestable,” and that in the name of freedom the Brooklyn library stocks books that offend or disturb many people, like “Mein Kampf.” Interview your local or school librarian about the library’s policies and guidelines about what books to stock and how to handle challenges. Then draft a policy that takes into consideration First Amendment freedoms and tolerance for a range of beliefs and values.
  9. Spotlight Censorship: Read about a 2008 traveling exhibition called “Censorship in Public Schools and Libraries,” sponsored by the Long Island Coalition Against Censorship. Research issues of censorship in your area or on a certain theme (like journalism) and build an exhibit of artifacts to represent the history you discover. Write exhibition tags explaining each piece, and invite the community to visit. The American Library Association offers additional display ideas to mark Banned Books Week.
  10. Go Global: The Times often covers books and other works that have been censored internationally, like in China and Iraq (as well as, occasionally, by the United States). Read about the role of books in other countries and the implications of book banning abroad and explore Web sites commonly blocked in countries like China and Saudi Arabia. Consider why these governments want to block the content in question, and how national history, culture and politics come into play during such episodes. What does a country’s censorship history tell us about what its government and citizens value? Create a timeline or narrative history of one country’s relationship with censorship, including, if possible, interviews with people who have direct experience.
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