I need to address the elephant in the room.
A Tennessee school board has banned the graphic novel, “Maus” (by Art Spiegelman). https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-60153696.
Members of the board claim that they have deemed that the nudity (of a mouse, no less), and the curse words were too inappropriate for the eighth graders.
While I certainly would find, say, extreme horror books to be “inappropriate” for young kids, I find the banning of books to be a dangerous and unacceptable means to any end. In this particular case, it should fall to the parents of each individual child to determine what is appropriate (or not). Outright banning of ANY book creates a fallacy of free will, independent thinking, and freedom to chose. What one person finds offensive, another might not – putting the entire matter in the most simplistic of terms. Banning and cancel culture are not protective measures. Rather, they are whitewashing creative minds, freedom of speech and the written word, and whittling artistic expression down to an ugly nub.
I’m absolutely not in favor of hate speech or incurring violence by any means. There is a line when it comes to that, and I would never deem to cross it. But banning literary (award winning, by the way) works is unconscionable, yet it is still happening. In 2022. What is this telling us about our society as a whole?
I have always openly invited ALL to this blog. While I won’t publish outright hate and vitriol toward others, every subject matter, curse word (if you so chose to include it in your writing), and/or “taboo topic” is welcome. This blog is to share creative and artistic endeavors for those who wish to participate – through written word, visual art, music, film, podcasting – any way one chooses to express themself.
While I don’t normally “get political” on this blog, I felt the banning of books and this particular recent event prompted a response. As an author, I could not stay silent. I might not have the power or backing to change what has been done, but, I CAN use my small platform in the social media world to show my disgust and anger at the situation.
Authors/Artists/Musicians/Podcasters – join me if you feel so moved.