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What Students Are Saying About Banning Books From School Libraries

What Students Are Saying About Banning Books From School Libraries

As a gay male, seeing attempts to remove LGBTQIA+ content from shelves is almost hurtful. All my life, books have been about the same thing; two straight, white people meet and fall in love. But in recent years, I’ve finally had access to literature that I can identify with. I can relate to characters who realize they don’t identify as straight, and find the same gender as them attractive. I can relate to those characters who have a family member or family members that think they’re disgusting or sinful for being attracted to those of the same sex. Because of how I can relate to these pieces of literature, it helps me know that I am not the only one to go through this, and there are others who share my story. By banning books, children are being told they should stick to the group they were born into, but that mindset is what led our country into the state it exists in. No one can agree on anything because no one understand every side of the story. Without diverse literature and proper education, our country could never move forward. Leave the books be.

David, Muskegon, Michigan

If these books get taken down for inappropriate content, we need to find out the root reason why…Is it because these books talk about severe racism, sexuality, gender, and real-life harms? Why shouldn’t people learn how to identify, treat others with respect, understand how to help/support your BIPOC community, support victims, and understand the horrors inflicted upon LGBTQIA BIPOC people? Learning or understanding these issues will better your society, the empathy people have for others and have a way to have self-empowerment and community.

Ez.,California

People in the L.G.B.T.Q community and in the minority groups use these books as an outlet, and a way to connect to the world to feel support…By removing these books, it creates a sense and feeling of not being accepted, or to have the right to be a part of the communities. I personally get a feeling that with the schools removing these books, it opens a feeling of shame. It silences these groups, these communities, these people, resulting in making them not feel valid, or even humanized.

Just like Petocz, I am also a student in school, and during these times of removing these books, it worries me that my passion for knowledge, and my passion for understanding my society and myself, will be hindered by someone’s views on what is acceptable and what is not.

Kyler, Reeths-Puffer Highschool

In school libraries, I think there should be more books around less popularized topics like drug addiction, black authors, LGBTQ stories, and non-American authors. These books are eye-opening encourages you to challenge your way of thinking. I recently read a book about drug addiction and I learned to destigmatize recovering drug addicts because I know how easily someone can become addicted (Heroine, McGinnis). The book also discouraged drug use through honest education and brought less well-known side effects to light

Emma, Cary High School

Simply banning books because they’re too much of a “sensitive topic” will only harm young readers. Books are supposed to enhance our understanding of topics, history, etc. The books that are on the list of being banned are all books that help readers understand certain topics to a significant extent. As someone who’s never had a human figure to ask about sensitive topics with, books helped me answer my questions and curiosity among the topics.

Teada, Gray New Gloucester High School