Book bans, boycotts, and burning

Censorship is wrong.

I’d love to just leave it there, but I can’t.

Not everyone out there is going to like the same book. You’ll get hard pressed to get 25 people randomly polled on the the street to all agree that they like one title or author.

In this place I call home, in other states (grateful it’s not in mine, but I know some who believe it should be) people are pulling books from libraries. Defunding libraries. Trying to tell bookstores what they can and can’t sell.

All in the name of ‘protecting the children’ from ….. something. In most cases, those who are screaming about it haven’t even read the books in question. They think that it’s evil based on someone else’s take.

What they’re really doing is trying to keep kids from learning. Growing. Becoming compassionate, educated, critically thinking adults.

They’re also trying to restrict the rights of other parents from allowing theses books to be read by their children.

It’s a scary thing.

The ‘Heroes of Avoch’ series is definitely PG-13. There’s no graphic violence, all romantic stuff happens off the page. But it would be banned by these extremists. Why?

One character is gay. Another that comes around in book 3 is non-binary. There’s more than one God. There’s monsters that aren’t real. There’s magic.

I sincerely doubt that anyone who actually reads ‘Scales and Stingers’ (or the rest of the series) will think it’s real. They’re not going to suddenly start praising Keroys or wander around with a staff that shoots red light from a crystal. There’s no underground cave system populated by a shunned race and filled with giant spiders and scorpions in the real world. No machines that trap the souls of the dead.

So, why ban it? Why scream about it?

Because it’s not the sort of book they approve of. There’s characters that, if they were real, they won’t like simply because they’re not what they consider normal.

As an author, I’m trying to entertain readers. I’m working to craft a story that makes you think. If you take something good from it, that’s great. But we as a society have far greater issues than being afraid of learning.

I will keep writing. I will keep promoting. I will talk to parents who wonder if my book is ‘right’ for their kid. Because it’s their decision. Not mine. I don’t know their kid. I don’t know what values they want them to learn.

History teaches us what happens when we let individuals tell us who to hate, what to fear. It wasn’t good then, and it’s not good now.

Knowledge is power.

It should not be rewritten to fit a specific narrative. It should not be banned, burned, or shunned. Those who think it should be restricted are the ones I fear. Not the ones who dared to express a single idea that something evil is wrong.

BB/Chan Eil Eagal Orm

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