Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Banned Books Week and the ALA

As a librarian, I am a member of a library listserve. Someone recently asked about celebrating the ALA's (American Library Association) "banned books week." I responded to the listserve but got almost no response so I decided to post my response here also:
I guess I could understand celebrating a "freedom of speech" week or a "freedom of the press" week, but a "banned books week?"

If the ALA held a "banned speech week" during which libraries listed and celebrated four-letter words, politically incorrect phrases, and obscene and racially insensitive jokes, would Christians celebrate that too?

The fact is that there are no banned books in America. Maybe I missed it but I don't recall seeing any articles in the Library Journal or American Libraries protesting that other religion and those other countries which really do ban books.

Oh, don't mind me. I'm still not over the fact that there was no ALA outcry over the censorship and abuse of librarian Scott Savage at Ohio State University when all he did was to recommend a book written by a conservative Christian (please read this article for an update by Scott Savage himself--and please withhold your judgment on Mr. Savage until you've read, The Marketing of Evil, which he recommended).

I'm also still waiting for the ALA to re-invite Robert Spencer. I'm waiting, but I won't hold my breath :-)


SafeLibraries said...

You are correct. No books have been banned in the USA for about a half a century. See "National Hogwash Week."

Further, regarding Robert Spencer, I have publicly challenged the ALA to reverse its censorious actions. See "Proof of ALA Pro-Terrorist Censorship; ALA Challenged to Explain and to Include Censored Speaker Next Time," and you may find the comments interesting as well, including what Michael Golrick said about the issue as presented in my post.

I'm going to subscribe to your blog. Perhaps you would like to subscribe to mine.

Dennis said...

You were already on my blogroll but I just added you as an RSS feed on my iGoogle reader. Thank you for standing for sanity in libraries!

SafeLibraries said...

You may be interested in this:

"US Libraries Hit Back Over Challenges to Kids Books," by Sara Hussein, Agence France-Presse [AFP], 6 September 2009.

Melinda said...


Dennis said...

Excellent link, Melinda. Thank you!

SafeLibraries said...

Dennis, dig this:

Annoyed Librarian Rips ALA for Banned Books Week "Nonsense" and for an "Incoherent and Self-Serving" Definition of Censorship