So I know my friend Jen has covered this topic on her blog, but really this should be being discussed in every venue; every dinner table, classroom, book club, church, and town square. If there are people gathered in any quantity, they should have, at the very least, some inkling of the true implications of this.
OK, I have gotten ahead of myself on this one, but seriously, this is one of the most disturbing things I have read recently. http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2009/jun/12/christian-group-sues-burn-gay-teen-novel This group in Wisconsin seems to think that a valid response for something they don't like, is to BURN it. Really? That is what seems like a valid, rational, educated response to something that displeases you. Um, at what point did madness take hold of these people? I would like to think that I live in a country where rational thought and common sense have at least a slight foothold. Yet here we sit reading a story where 4 men, can even get in the door with a lawsuit that frankly should have had them laughed clear out of the state. Book Burning, because you don't like the content? How about don't read it. Advise your friends and family not to read it.
I mean if I don't like a TV show I just don't watch it, don't like a shock jock on the radio, well conveniently enough there 100 other stations I can listen too. I don't jump right to the condemnation and burning of said offense. Maybe I'm just too mild mannered. Maybe that is the next logical step and I just missed the crazy boat.
This country was founded on the principle of free speech, and yet if these men have their way, the freedom of one writer will have been squashed, the freedom of other library patrons to read the book if they choose, will be squashed. If these men have their way, if they are given into, what will be the next book burned because it offends someone? Where will the line be drawn?
As someone who has loved books for as long as I can remember and has only recently taken my first foray into the writing world, I find this horrific. The idea of burning a book, any book, regardless of it content is truly offensive. The thought that they have not been laughed out of the court room, that they have gotten the publicity they have, is astonishing.
I hope that everyone who comes across this story and thinks for one second that these men have a valid point or think for a second that just maybe they may be right....Remember book burning rarely ends with just one book, and it rarely ends with only books being the targets of the hate that lies behind it.