‘Banned Books Week:’ Why some books are threatened to be pulled from shelves
LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - The Hunger Games, To Kill a Mockingbird, The Diary of Anne Frank are just a few of the 1,600 books nationwide that have been threatened to be pulled from libraries.
The American Library Association is using the moment to highlight those novels through what’s called Banned Books Week.
Inside Lexington’s Central Library, the number of books you can read seems endless. But what you may have read for a school assignment might now threatened to be pulled from some shelves.
“A banned book is one that has been questioned by a community member or a library customer about whether or not if that book is valuable,” said Anne Donworth with marketing communications for the Lexington Public Library. “Often they deal with race, sexuality and religion.”
She said To Kill a Mockingbird has been challenged on the grounds that it features racial slurs. Those challenges can come from parents and other groups.
“Even things not as controversial, but Harry Potter because it promoted magic. Captain Underpants because it has potty humor,” Donworth said.
Other books that have been challenged include Charlotte’s Web, The Diary of Anne Frank, and a penguin book insinuating a same sex couple adopting a baby penguin.
“If we censor the literature from kids or teenagers they are going to eventually find it out in the community,” said Leon Cavins, a frequent guest of the public library.
David Walls is the executive director of the Family Foundation of Kentucky, a group focused on Christian and family values. He believes certain books shouldn’t be in school libraries.
“We all recognize that certain books and topics are just not appropriate to kids at young ages and this is certainly, our organization is committed to ensuring that parents and families have a voice and a say,” Walls said.
Walls said the phrase “banned books” is inflammatory language used to shock people into what is not actually going on.
We’re told even one of the most read pieces of literature of all time has been challenged-- the Bible.
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