I’ve been “in hiding” for a while, therefore pretty much out of the loop. Getting back into the loop, haunting old hangouts, has at times been a little disheartening. While it doesn’t seem to be quite as prevalent, one of the burning questions still frequently being asked is, “What will get me banned?”
What a sorry question for an author to ask. What a pathetic issue to constantly keep in the back of your head as you’re sitting there trying to be creative. So nice to know that the Amazonian hoops are still so successfully squashing independent thought and ‘creativity. As big as they are, how can they not know what’s best for us, right.
With that in mind, here is a year-old article, boldly presented by a proud author of banned books:
In honor of Banned Books Week 2014, we wanted to find out how some of history’s most influential thinkers feel about censorship. Scroll down to read their totally on-point comments.
“Censorship is telling a man he can’t have a steak just because a baby can’t chew it.” — Mark Twain
“It’s not just the books under fire now that worry me. It is the books that will never be written. The books that will never be read. And all due to the fear of censorship. As always, young readers will be the real losers.” — Judy Blume
“The crime of book purging is that it involves a rejection of the word. For the word is never absolute truth, but only man’s frail and human effort to approach the truth. To reject the word is to reject the human search. ” — Max Lerner
“If all printers were determined not to print anything till they were sure it would offend nobody, there would be very little printed.” — Benjamin Franklin
“Books won’t stay banned. They won’t burn. Ideas won’t go to jail. In the long run of history, the censor and the inquisitor have always lost.” — Alfred Whitney Griswold
“Yes, books are dangerous. They should be dangerous — they contain ideas.” — Pete Hautman
“Banning books gives us silence when we need speech. It closes our ears when we need to listen. It makes us blind when we need sight.” Steven Chbosky
“If librarianship is the connecting of people to ideas…it is crucial to remember that we must keep and make available, not just good ideas and noble ideas, but bad ideas, silly ideas, and yes, even dangerous or wicked ideas.” — Graceanne A. Decandidio
“The books that the world calls immoral are books that show the world its own shame.” — Oscar Wilde
“There are worse crimes than burning books. One of them is not reading them. ” — Joseph Brodsky
“Books and ideas are the most effective weapons against intolerance and ignorance.” — Lyndon Baines Johnson