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December 08, 2005

Don’t ban books

We applaud the recent vote by a Blue Valley School District committee to keep the novel “Song of Solomon” by Toni Morrison in the district’s curriculum. The novel was challenged by an Overland Park resident who wanted the book removed because that resident believed it had inappropriate content. The courage displayed by the district committee is something all Americans can be proud of.

The attempts of pressure groups to censor literature in our public schools do nothing to further the intellectual growth of our children. Censorship only serves to stifle the creative thought process. The ability to read and have access to great works of modern and classical literature is vital to the attainment and advancement of knowledge.

United States Supreme Court Justice John Marshall Harlan once wrote, “one man’s vulgarity is another’s lyric.”

Harlan’s words sum up the impossibility of developing a definition of obscenity that isn’t hopelessly vague and subjective. If Americans allow pressure groups to arbitrarily determine what is obscene and what is not, we shall allow a terrific injustice to be thrust upon our children and the future of our diverse culture.

Brett Shirk, Executive Director
ACLU of Kansas
and Western Missouri,
Kansas City;
Henry E. Lyons, President
Olathe NAACP;
Boo Tyson, Executive Director
MAINstream Coalition
Prairie Village

Comments

Lost_In_Ambivalence

tomw-

I am not sure what side you are taking here but I think this arguement could be used for including anything in school. True, nothing is required in school if you have an objection (you can sit out of english, science, gym, health, etc.). In fact, under today's educational system...I think you could sit out of a math class with a little creative thinking.

tomw

One thing has been overlooked. No book is required reading. If you don't wish for your child to read this book or any other, you may opt out.

hajkar

Perhaps you are praying to the wrong god? ;-P

Engineer

Sorry about that-don't know how I did it. My xpMicrosoft Internet Explorer just doesn't seem to get along with this site

Engineer

Brian Ford
You are correct that decisions must be made by those entrusted and trained to do so. However if you feel a decision is incorrect, especially if you believe it will be harmful, then it is your obligation to protest it. You are also correct that if you are dealing with a large enough group you will always find some who will protest something. In this case people were upset enough to make a very determined protest.
I am unfamiliar with the "book list" in the Blue Valley District so have no idea what it may include. However I would be supprised if it did include the Bible. As to Teri Morrison producing literature, well, I guess everyone is entitled to their own opinion. Tried to read one of hers once, only got 20 pages or so into it. The Amazon blurb hyping "The Song of Solomon" did refer to a solid book "Invisable Man" by Ralph Elison. One that left me with a knot in my stomach when I read it long ago is Richard Wright's "Native Son".
As to literature classes, I always thought analyses was an imporant part, the way to teach one to evaluate what they read. Like anything else I suppose it can be overdone.

Engineer

Brian Ford
You are correct that decisions must be made by those entrusted and trained to do so. However if you feel a decision is incorrect, especially if you believe it will be harmful, then it is your obligation to protest it. You are also correct that if you are dealing with a large enough group you will always find some who will protest something. In this case people were upset enough to make a very determined protest.
I am unfamiliar with the "book list" in the Blue Valley District so have no idea what it may include. However I would be supprised if it did include the Bible. As to Teri Morrison producing literature, well, I guess everyone is entitled to their own opinion. Tried to read one of hers once, only got 20 pages or so into it. The Amazon blurb hyping "The Song of Solomon" did refer to a solid book "Invisable Man" by Ralph Elison. One that left me with a knot in my stomach when I read it long ago is Richard Wright's "Native Son".
As to literature classes, I always thought analyses was an imporant part, the way to teach one to evaluate what they read. Like anything else I suppose it can be overdone.

Engineer

Brian Ford
You are correct that decisions must be made by those entrusted and trained to do so. However if you feel a decision is incorrect, especially if you believe it will be harmful, then it is your obligation to protest it. You are also correct that if you are dealing with a large enough group you will always find some who will protest something. In this case people were upset enough to make a very determined protest.
I am unfamiliar with the "book list" in the Blue Valley District so have no idea what it may include. However I would be supprised if it did include the Bible. As to Teri Morrison producing literature, well, I guess everyone is entitled to their own opinion. Tried to read one of hers once, only got 20 pages or so into it. The Amazon blurb hyping "The Song of Solomon" did refer to a solid book "Invisable Man" by Ralph Elison. One that left me with a knot in my stomach when I read it long ago is Richard Wright's "Native Son".
As to literature classes, I always thought analyses was an imporant part, the way to teach one to evaluate what they read. Like anything else I suppose it can be overdone.

Engineer

Brian Ford
You are correct that decisions must be made by those entrusted and trained to do so. However if you feel a decision is incorrect, especially if you believe it will be harmful, then it is your obligation to protest it. You are also correct that if you are dealing with a large enough group you will always find some who will protest something. In this case people were upset enough to make a very determined protest.
I am unfamiliar with the "book list" in the Blue Valley District so have no idea what it may include. However I would be supprised if it did include the Bible. As to Teri Morrison producing literature, well, I guess everyone is entitled to their own opinion. Tried to read one of hers once, only got 20 pages or so into it. The Amazon blurb hyping "The Song of Solomon" did refer to a solid book "Invisable Man" by Ralph Elison. One that left me with a knot in my stomach when I read it long ago is Richard Wright's "Native Son".
As to literature classes, I always thought analyses was an imporant part, the way to teach one to evaluate what they read. Like anything else I suppose it can be overdone.

Engineer

Brian Ford
You are correct that decisions must be made by those entrusted and trained to do so. However if you feel a decision is incorrect, especially if you believe it will be harmful, then it is your obligation to protest it. You are also correct that if you are dealing with a large enough group you will always find some who will protest something. In this case people were upset enough to make a very determined protest.
I am unfamiliar with the "book list" in the Blue Valley District so have no idea what it may include. However I would be supprised if it did include the Bible. As to Teri Morrison producing literature, well, I guess everyone is entitled to their own opinion. Tried to read one of hers once, only got 20 pages or so into it. The Amazon blurb hyping "The Song of Solomon" did refer to a solid book "Invisable Man" by Ralph Elison. One that left me with a knot in my stomach when I read it long ago is Richard Wright's "Native Son".
As to literature classes, I always thought analyses was an imporant part, the way to teach one to evaluate what they read. Like anything else I suppose it can be overdone.

Engineer

Brian Ford
You are correct that decisions must be made by those entrusted and trained to do so. However if you feel a decision is incorrect, especially if you believe it will be harmful, then it is your obligation to protest it. You are also correct that if you are dealing with a large enough group you will always find some who will protest something. In this case people were upset enough to make a very determined protest.
I am unfamiliar with the "book list" in the Blue Valley District so have no idea what it may include. However I would be supprised if it did include the Bible. As to Teri Morrison producing literature, well, I guess everyone is entitled to their own opinion. Tried to read one of hers once, only got 20 pages or so into it. The Amazon blurb hyping "The Song of Solomon" did refer to a solid book "Invisable Man" by Ralph Elison. One that left me with a knot in my stomach when I read it long ago is Richard Wright's "Native Son".
As to literature classes, I always thought analyses was an imporant part, the way to teach one to evaluate what they read. Like anything else I suppose it can be overdone.

Engineer

Brian Ford
You are correct that decisions must be made by those entrusted and trained to do so. However if you feel a decision is incorrect, especially if you believe it will be harmful, then it is your obligation to protest it. You are also correct that if you are dealing with a large enough group you will always find some who will protest something. In this case people were upset enough to make a very determined protest.
I am unfamiliar with the "book list" in the Blue Valley District so have no idea what it may include. However I would be supprised if it did include the Bible. As to Teri Morrison producing literature, well, I guess everyone is entitled to their own opinion. Tried to read one of hers once, only got 20 pages or so into it. The Amazon blurb hyping "The Song of Solomon" did refer to a solid book "Invisable Man" by Ralph Elison. One that left me with a knot in my stomach when I read it long ago is Richard Wright's "Native Son".
As to literature classes, I always thought analyses was an imporant part, the way to teach one to evaluate what they read. Like anything else I suppose it can be overdone.

Engineer

Brian Ford
You are correct that decisions must be made by those entrusted and trained to do so. However if you feel a decision is incorrect, especially if you believe it will be harmful, then it is your obligation to protest it. You are also correct that if you are dealing with a large enough group you will always find some who will protest something. In this case people were upset enough to make a very determined protest.
I am unfamiliar with the "book list" in the Blue Valley District so have no idea what it may include. However I would be supprised if it did include the Bible. As to Teri Morrison producing literature, well, I guess everyone is entitled to their own opinion. Tried to read one of hers once, only got 20 pages or so into it. The Amazon blurb hyping "The Song of Solomon" did refer to a solid book "Invisable Man" by Ralph Elison. One that left me with a knot in my stomach when I read it long ago is Richard Wright's "Native Son".
As to literature classes, I always thought analyses was an imporant part, the way to teach one to evaluate what they read. Like anything else I suppose it can be overdone.

Engineer

Brian Ford
You are correct that decisions must be made by those entrusted and trained to do so. However if you feel a decision is incorrect, especially if you believe it will be harmful, then it is your obligation to protest it. You are also correct that if you are dealing with a large enough group you will always find some who will protest something. In this case people were upset enough to make a very determined protest.
I am unfamiliar with the "book list" in the Blue Valley District so have no idea what it may include. However I would be supprised if it did include the Bible. As to Teri Morrison producing literature, well, I guess everyone is entitled to their own opinion. Tried to read one of hers once, only got 20 pages or so into it. The Amazon blurb hyping "The Song of Solomon" did refer to a solid book "Invisable Man" by Ralph Elison. One that left me with a knot in my stomach when I read it long ago is Richard Wright's "Native Son".
As to literature classes, I always thought analyses was an imporant part, the way to teach one to evaluate what they read. Like anything else I suppose it can be overdone.

Engineer

Brian Ford
You are correct that decisions must be made by those entrusted and trained to do so. However if you feel a decision is incorrect, especially if you believe it will be harmful, then it is your obligation to protest it. You are also correct that if you are dealing with a large enough group you will always find some who will protest something. In this case people were upset enough to make a very determined protest.
I am unfamiliar with the "book list" in the Blue Valley District so have no idea what it may include. However I would be supprised if it did include the Bible. As to Teri Morrison producing literature, well, I guess everyone is entitled to their own opinion. Tried to read one of hers once, only got 20 pages or so into it. The Amazon blurb hyping "The Song of Solomon" did refer to a solid book "Invisable Man" by Ralph Elison. One that left me with a knot in my stomach when I read it long ago is Richard Wright's "Native Son".
As to literature classes, I always thought analyses was an imporant part, the way to teach one to evaluate what they read. Like anything else I suppose it can be overdone.

Engineer

Brian Ford
You are correct that decisions must be made by those entrusted and trained to do so. However if you feel a decision is incorrect, especially if you believe it will be harmful, then it is your obligation to protest it. You are also correct that if you are dealing with a large enough group you will always find some who will protest something. In this case people were upset enough to make a very determined protest.
I am unfamiliar with the "book list" in the Blue Valley District so have no idea what it may include. However I would be supprised if it did include the Bible. As to Teri Morrison producing literature, well, I guess everyone is entitled to their own opinion. Tried to read one of hers once, only got 20 pages or so into it. The Amazon blurb hyping "The Song of Solomon" did refer to a solid book "Invisable Man" by Ralph Elison. One that left me with a knot in my stomach when I read it long ago is Richard Wright's "Native Son".
As to literature classes, I always thought analyses was an imporant part, the way to teach one to evaluate what they read. Like anything else I suppose it can be overdone.

Engineer

Brian Ford
You are correct that decisions must be made by those entrusted and trained to do so. However if you feel a decision is incorrect, especially if you believe it will be harmful, then it is your obligation to protest it. You are also correct that if you are dealing with a large enough group you will always find some who will protest something. In this case people were upset enough to make a very determined protest.
I am unfamiliar with the "book list" in the Blue Valley District so have no idea what it may include. However I would be supprised if it did include the Bible. As to Teri Morrison producing literature, well, I guess everyone is entitled to their own opinion. Tried to read one of hers once, only got 20 pages or so into it. The Amazon blurb hyping "The Song of Solomon" did refer to a solid book "Invisable Man" by Ralph Elison. One that left me with a knot in my stomach when I read it long ago is Richard Wright's "Native Son".
As to literature classes, I always thought analyses was an imporant part, the way to teach one to evaluate what they read. Like anything else I suppose it can be overdone.

Engineer

Brian Ford
You are correct that decisions must be made by those entrusted and trained to do so. However if you feel a decision is incorrect, especially if you believe it will be harmful, then it is your obligation to protest it. You are also correct that if you are dealing with a large enough group you will always find some who will protest something. In this case people were upset enough to make a very determined protest.
I am unfamiliar with the "book list" in the Blue Valley District so have no idea what it may include. However I would be supprised if it did include the Bible. As to Teri Morrison producing literature, well, I guess everyone is entitled to their own opinion. Tried to read one of hers once, only got 20 pages or so into it. The Amazon blurb hyping "The Song of Solomon" did refer to a solid book "Invisable Man" by Ralph Elison. One that left me with a knot in my stomach when I read it long ago is Richard Wright's "Native Son".
As to literature classes, I always thought analyses was an imporant part, the way to teach one to evaluate what they read. Like anything else I suppose it can be overdone.

Engineer

Brian Ford
You are correct that decisions must be made by those entrusted and trained to do so. However if you feel a decision is incorrect, especially if you believe it will be harmful, then it is your obligation to protest it. You are also correct that if you are dealing with a large enough group you will always find some who will protest something. In this case people were upset enough to make a very determined protest.
I am unfamiliar with the "book list" in the Blue Valley District so have no idea what it may include. However I would be supprised if it did include the Bible. As to Teri Morrison producing literature, well, I guess everyone is entitled to their own opinion. Tried to read one of hers once, only got 20 pages or so into it. The Amazon blurb hyping "The Song of Solomon" did refer to a solid book "Invisable Man" by Ralph Elison. One that left me with a knot in my stomach when I read it long ago is Richard Wright's "Native Son".
As to literature classes, I always thought analyses was an imporant part, the way to teach one to evaluate what they read. Like anything else I suppose it can be overdone.

Engineer

Brian Ford
You are correct that decisions must be made by those entrusted and trained to do so. However if you feel a decision is incorrect, especially if you believe it will be harmful, then it is your obligation to protest it. You are also correct that if you are dealing with a large enough group you will always find some who will protest something. In this case people were upset enough to make a very determined protest.
I am unfamiliar with the "book list" in the Blue Valley District so have no idea what it may include. However I would be supprised if it did include the Bible. As to Teri Morrison producing literature, well, I guess everyone is entitled to their own opinion. Tried to read one of hers once, only got 20 pages or so into it. The Amazon blurb hyping "The Song of Solomon" did refer to a solid book "Invisable Man" by Ralph Elison. One that left me with a knot in my stomach when I read it long ago is Richard Wright's "Native Son".
As to literature classes, I always thought analyses was an imporant part, the way to teach one to evaluate what they read. Like anything else I suppose it can be overdone.

Engineer

Brian Ford
You are correct that decisions must be made by those entrusted and trained to do so. However if you feel a decision is incorrect, especially if you believe it will be harmful, then it is your obligation to protest it. You are also correct that if you are dealing with a large enough group you will always find some who will protest something. In this case people were upset enough to make a very determined protest.
I am unfamiliar with the "book list" in the Blue Valley District so have no idea what it may include. However I would be supprised if it did include the Bible. As to Teri Morrison producing literature, well, I guess everyone is entitled to their own opinion. Tried to read one of hers once, only got 20 pages or so into it. The Amazon blurb hyping "The Song of Solomon" did refer to a solid book "Invisable Man" by Ralph Elison. One that left me with a knot in my stomach when I read it long ago is Richard Wright's "Native Son".
As to literature classes, I always thought analyses was an imporant part, the way to teach one to evaluate what they read. Like anything else I suppose it can be overdone.

 
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