Slaughterhouse-Five” is one of many books that has been banned because it was deemed inappropriate.
In 1982 the event Banned Books Week began in order to celebrate the freedom to read any type of book without worrying about censorship.
According to the Banned Books Week website, the American Library Association stated that about 464 books were complained about to their Office of Intellectual Freedom in 2012 alone. Altogether, around 11,000 books have been challenged and reported as being inappropriate for a certain age level due to their content.
Surprisingly, parents have also challenged Dave Pikey’s “Captain Underpants.” They feel the book may not be a good influence on their children since its main characters are two fourth-grade pranksters, even though the book is supposed to be humorous with no intentions of imposing bad influences on children.
The children’s book “And Tango Makes Three” written by Peter Parnell and Justin Richardson is another book that was challenged. The book takes place in New York’s Central Park Zoo where two male penguins decide to make a nest together. When zookeepers see that they have become a couple, they give them an egg, which came from a male and female penguin couple. The penguins hatch the egg successfully and have a baby penguin together.
Some parents did not want their children reading a book that deals with homosexuality and thought it was unacceptable to teach them about it at such a young age.
However, according to the authors, “There’s no anthropomorphisation in the book, we never said Roy [one of the penguins] felt a certain way because we did not want to attribute anything to the penguins in the order of a human intention because that’s something that could very easily be criticized, and fairly so, as reading our own agenda into the penguins’ actions.”
The authors also claim they wanted to write the book for children with families similar to the penguin family.
Many children with families of homosexual parents may feel as though they do not fit in with some of their other classmates, but books such as “And Tango Makes Three” can help children in more ways than one can imagine. The effect books have on children is remarkable and banning a book such as this does not seem fair.
Along with “And Tango Makes Three,” the novel “Thirteen Reasons Why” by Jay Asher was another among those challenged. The book revolves around a teen girl named Hannah who goes into a depression and commits suicide. Before doing this, she makes cassette tapes and has them passed to the 13 people she claims were the reasons why she decided to kill herself.
“Having spoken to thousands of teens since my book came out, I even more firmly believe that books dealing with these issues need to be written as emotionally honest as possible. Not only is it appropriate, it’s responsible. If people are dealing with it, we need to talk about it. Otherwise, we contribute to the main reason people don’t reach out for help,” Asher explained on his influence of the book.
A solution to stop banning books, which might satisfy parents, is to consider having certain sections of the library stating the age group which the books are aimed toward.
However, banning books completely from a library should not be allowed since many of the books that are banned do help and benefit people when they confront similar real-life situations.