Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Banning The Ban.

Banning The Ban.
There is a bill in the Connecticut to ban the banning of books because of a protected class. In other words… you cannot ban a book on slavery because that is racist. You cannot ban a book about LGBTQ+ people.
Publishers are fighting back on book bans by flooding the market with books representing diverse points of view.
Fast Company
April 22, 2024

Nikkolas Smith knows a thing or two about book bans. The illustrator has created five picture books over the last three years—four of which have been yanked off library shelves. There’s I am Ruby Bridges, about the civil rights icon; That Flag about the confederate flag; Born on the Water, which explores slavery; and The Artivist which features a child supporting trans kids. 

Book bans aren’t new; the practice is centuries old. But over the past four years, right-wing organizations have been on a crusade to remove books from school libraries and classrooms. Last school year, these groups challenged more than 3,000 titles. The top reasons for contesting books is that they deal with LBGTQ+ issues or shine a light on racism. As someone who tackles both of these issues in his work, Smith has gotten used to his books being challenged. “In many cases, librarians don’t even bother buying them, because they know parents will contest them,” he says. “They don’t even have a chance to be banned.”
Banning a book because there is a sex scene in it is one thing but banning a book because two boys are holding hands is another thing altogether. 
Smith isn’t alone. Publishers, writers, and progressive organizations across the children’s book industry aren’t letting the book bans hold them back. Instead, they’re turning the bans into a rallying cry to publish even more diverse characters and points of view. Indeed, over the last five years, there has been a steady increase in books by and about people of color. And people are finding creative ways to make sure these books get out into the world.
You shouldn’t be able to ban a book because there is a trans child in the book. And they even banned “The Diary of Anne Frank!” 
“This parent didn’t want the book to make children dislike German people,” she says. “I was teaching 250 kids a day and this was just another problem I had to deal with. It meant that I was no longer really free to teach what I felt was important.”
I keep coming beck to the musical South Pacific, “You got to be Carefully Taught,”
You’ve got to be taught to hate and fear,
You’ve got to be taught from year to year,
It’s got to be drummed in your dear little ear—
You’ve got to be carefully taught!
And the conservative don’t want racially integrated school because they might have a Black or a Latina or an Asian friend.
Book banning only accelerated as the Black Lives Matter and Stop Asian Hate movements spread across the country. “They began pursuing an agenda of silencing the voices of marginalized communities and erasing their stories from library shelves so that young people could not access them,” Caldwell-Stone says.
Think about the children.

That is what the right-wing conservatives say all the time. But that is only for parents who want to ban the books for stop the integration of school. The Century Foundation writes,
The Center for American Progress’s (CAP) recent research brief, “The Racist Origins of Private School Vouchers,” highlights a dark period in the history of voucher programs. Following Brown v. Board of Education, many Southern states established voucher, or “tuition grant,” programs for white students to attend segregated private schools when public school systems were ordered to desegregate. The brief argues that it is crucial to acknowledge and learn from this historical context when considering education policy today, in particular, as civil rights protections tied to federal funding were established during that difficult era.


Earlier this year, The Century Foundation documented several schools in North Carolina’s Opportunity Scholarship program that openly discriminated against students by religion and LGBTQ status, charged additional fees that excluded poor children from gifted and dual enrollment programs, employed racially and religiously discriminatory dress codes, and used textbooks that—among other things—offered sympathetic portrayals of the KKK and whitewashed slavery. We should not expect for federal involvement to improve this civil rights dilemma, as U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos has testified before Congress that states should “set up the rules around that.” And while the data on voucher student achievement is complicated, the most recent studies of three of the largest programs—Indiana, Louisiana, and Ohio—and in the nation’s only federally funded program in Washington, D.C., showed that students accepting a voucher and transferring to a private school fared worse academically than their counterparts who did not. Clearly, none of these issues benefit black people.
Think how a Black, or Asian, or Muslim, or a trans student feels what they cannot find any book about people like them in the library, how it must make them feel… dirty, that somehow they are bad. What about straight children? Bullying in schools is skyrocketing as they pick on minorities 

I believe that the ultimate goal of the Republicans is to do away with public school as we know it and only those who can afford private education will have an education beyond Reading Riting, and Rithmetic.

The bill reads in part...
43 (c) Each local or regional board of education shall provide a reason
44 for the removal or restricted access to any library material belonging to
45 the collection of a school library or media center as a result of the process
46 prescribed by the policy established pursuant to subsection (b) of this
47 section. No board shall remove or restrict access to library material
48 because of any of the following:
49 (1) Partisan content or views contained in any library material;
50 (2) An author's race, nationality, gender identity, sexual orientation
51 or political or religious views;
52 (3) The personal discomfort, morality or political or religious views
53 of a member or members of the board;
54 (4) An author's points of view concerning current events, whether
55 international, national or local;
56 (5) The race, nationality, gender identity, sexual orientation or
57 political or religious views of a protagonist or other characters or as
58 otherwise represented in the library material; or
59 (6) The content of the library material is related to sexual health and
60 addresses physical, mental, emotional or social dimensions of human
61 sexuality, including, but not limited to, puberty, sex and relationships
62 based on the age, development and grade level of students.
This bill will not prohibit banning of books because of sexual conduct or vulgar language.

This morning I am at the Legislative Office Building lobbying for this bill and other pro-LGBTQ+ bills. If you are a Connecticut resident please call your legislator to support the bill (You can find you legislator here.).

Well that plan went out the window.
Last night I was laying on the couch watching the streaming of my grandnephew's high school concert and after it was over I went to sit up and my back just went out. I've been on a heating pad and doing back exercises since.


  1. Are they voting on any of these pro-LGBT bills during this short time? Or will I be wasting my time calling and then have to call again next semester.

    1. There is a good chance that the bills will come up for a vote or they will be made into amendments to other bills. It is always a good idea to let your view be heard.