Banned Books: An American Tragedy

“Books are capable of exciting great passion in readers who love them and those who hate them”

(Mass Communications Sixth Edition; Ralph E. Hanson; pg. 93)

In today’s society, we are faced with the opposition of the alliterate parents of the United States. In the United States parents of children tend to dislike many books that do not agree with their own personal beliefs. I believe this is wrong. To limit the amount of books available to children is to shelter them and keep them from seeing the world around them. Every child is different, and should be allowed to have free thought. I believe banning books from school may discourage children from reading and therefore remove valuable lessons that can be found in books.

For a good example of banned books and the lost messages that come from them, let us look at the Harry Potter Series written by J.K. Rowling. Harry Potter is a very in depth book filled with all sorts of good lessons regarding teamwork, friendship, love, compassion, and the balance of good and evil in the world. Upon closer inspection, Harry Potter, points to government and how it can be corrupted, and those in positions of power may not always be the right person for the job.  A lesson we could all learn and apply in today’s society. The reason they give for it to be banned is not any of these reasons but rather because there are mentions of witchcraft. Now this claim is a direct assault on those who practice Wicca. A religion that is protected by the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Which declared “To be a bona fide religious belief entitled to protection under either the First Amendment or Title VII, a belief must be sincerely held, and within the believer’s own scheme of things religious.” (USCA Const. Amend 1: Civil Rights Act 1964 701 et seq., 717 as amended 42 USCA 2000-16). Wicca has also been recognized as a Tax-exempt faith since Roberts v. Ravenwood Church of Wicca in 1982. This among many other court cases have helped to establish Wicca as a recognized faith protected by the First Amendment. Wicca exercises the term Witchcraft, or simply the craft, as a means to explain their faith’s methods of worship. This is important in regards to the banning of Harry Potter because it arguably brainwashes children into believing anyone who identifies as a “witch” must be evil, therefore encouraging negative ethnocentric views on those who believe different then themselves, and creates the mentality of “us versus them.” This is dangerous because it discourages unity, peace, and love of your fellow man. Things also presented in Harry Potter, a banned book.

Parents should not ban some books from school libraries because in doing so they limit the media outlets for children to understand the world around them, and by banning books that may get a child’s attention may also discourage future reading and therefore make the alliterate, which in turn will limit the progressive knowledge, and understanding of the world around them. Many banned books contain valuable information that may teach children important life lessons, therefore, for the sake of the general human masses, don’t shelter your children, don’t ban books.


(Photo credit to yaloveblog)



Tagged chapter 4, page 93, “Questioning the Media.”


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