My all-time favorite book has been on the banned book list for years. This morning I googled the banned book list. I found an article with banned/challenged books and the reasons why they were banned/challenged.
I have read a handful of those books, and they have proved extremely helpful in shaping my worldview. What I don’t understand is why there are so many that are challenged and banned.
It seems like American literature is suddenly the only place where there can’t be a little explicit content. Have you listened to any pop radio station? Have you watched 90% of what it on television?
American literature is being subject to unrealistic expectations. For that our kids are suffering. These kids are no longer being challenged to explore a viewpoint that may make them uncomfortable. They are going through life never having to find a middle ground with someone from a different race.
Harper Lee once said, “the book to read isn’t the one that thinks for you but the one which makes you think.”
The longer we forget about our history, the more likely it is to repeat itself. It’s time we started teaching students how to think, instead of what to think! We can’t ignore the obvious; our kids are unable to understand the rest of the world because they haven’t ever learned how.
If you want to watch your children succeed; you must teach them how to think. You have to introduce viewpoints that make them uncomfortable; you have to bring forth history in a way that makes their hearts break for the oppressed.
My goal is to read every book on the banned book list because each book teaches me more about the world than I could ever imagine knowing.
If you desire to change the world; you first have to understand what you are working with. I would challenge you to take a crack at the banned/challenged books and read a few, then watch how your thinking changes.