Welcome to Banned Books Week!

on September 24, 2011

I’m thrilled to participate in Banned Books Week.

Murder She Writes had joined more than 250 blogs in the effort to raise awareness that books should not be banned. Scroll to the bottom for a list of ALL participating blogs … many of whom are giving away prizes!

I’m giving away prizes, too … click here for a list!

From Ray Bradbury and FAHRENHEIT-451 (one of my all-time favorite books):

“Somewhere the saving and putting away had to begin again and someone had to do the saving and the keeping, one way or another, in books, in records, in people’s heads, any way at all so long as it was safe, free from moths, silverfish, rust and dry-rot, and men with matches.”

I’ve always found it ironic that a book about the tragedy of book banning (through the total physical destruction of books-fire) has been banned by different people for different reasons.

Parents should be the arbitrars of what their children read. If I, as a mom, ban a book from my house, that is my right. (And I have. Some books are inappropriate for kids. Some books are inappropriate for me!)

But please, in a free society, no one has the right to ban a book for ALL.

Benjamin Franklin said, “Those who give up essential liberties in order to protect a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety.”

The First Amendment, as is the entire Bill of Rights, is essential for our country to be free, and books are the permanent foundation of free speech. Our military men and women have fought and died for more than two hundred years to protect our freedoms–freedoms many of us don’t think about, or take for granted.

There are countries where people are killed or imprisoned because of what they say. There are countries where people are killed because of what religion they practice. There are countries where women have no rights, where women are punished when they are raped because, in the eyes of the government, their rape was their fault.

These are countries where government bans books and information.

Censorship is not a liberal or conservative issue. Banning books and ideas affects the left and the right equally.

But it all starts with banning one book.

Visit as many of these blogs as you can — many are giving away books and other prizes throughout the week!

Tell me: what’s your favorite banned book?

Follow me on Twitter @allison_brennan for tweets of favorite banned books all through the week.

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