Pharos-Tribune

Breaking News

Opinion

September 26, 2013

THEIR VIEW: Celebrate freedom with a 'banned' book

Got big plans next week? Open to suggestion? We’re here to help.

We suggest you do something that doesn’t sit well with someone, somewhere. Simply put, we hope you read a book.

This week is Banned Books Week, an observance that began in 1982. According to the initiative’s website, Banned Books Week was started in response to a large number of “challenges” to certain books available in schools, libraries and bookstores.

We want to be clear on a key point. We respect the right of parents to determine which books are and are not appropriate for their children to read. Book sellers have a right to cater to their clientele. Library and school officials should be allowed to choose the books made available to their communities and students.

We also have no quarrel with those who object to the content of certain books. People arrive at their opinions based on background and life experience, and sneering at values is an elitism generally best avoided.

However, principled objection to printed words crosses the line when the objecting individual, or group, seeks to limit access to a book by the larger community. We think that approach is contrary to the American traditions of choice and free speech. Frankly, we find it offensive.

The best counteroffensive? Read.

The Banned Books Week site lists several of the most-challenged titles of 2012. The top 10 includes books by Toni Morrison and Sherman Alexie, two insightful and immensely talented authors. Those wishing to assert their rights as freethinking residents of the United States could do worse than sampling their works.

In 2013, there are still those who would like to limit access to books. We encourage you to visit the American Library Association website at www.ala.org to learn which books are frequently challenged. Then we suggest you read one or more of those works, perhaps via your local library or bookstore.

In the battle for intellectual freedom, you’ll win.

—The Goshen News

THE ISSUE This week is "Banned Book Week." THEIR VIEW

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Opinion
  • COATS: What to do next with Putin, Ukraine The tragic death of 298 people on board Malaysian Airlines flight 17 in a wheat field in eastern Ukraine marks a moment when words of disapproval and expressions of grief are not enough. This is a moment when action must follow the outrage and rhetor

    July 28, 2014

  • LYONS: The most powerful men in the world? Search the phrase “the most powerful man in the world” and what comes up are photos of grotesquely over-developed weightlifters; also Barack Obama and Vladimir Putin. Awfully ironic under present circumstances. It’s a cant term TV news anchors use to

    July 28, 2014

  • CEPEDA: What are students to eat now Remember last year’s hysteria over school lunches? Administrators, cafeteria workers, students and parents across the country freaked out when — gasp! — school lunches were made healthier.News reports throughout the 2012-13 school year — when lunch s

    July 27, 2014

  • HOWEY: Rising up to meet Putin’s thuggery Any illusions I had about the progressive nature of Vladimir Putin’s Russian regime quickly dissipated when I returned to my Moscow Grand Marriott room in August 2007. Upon opening the door, I was greeted with the spectacle of my papers and note pads

    July 27, 2014

  • HAYDEN: Congress scolded for its failures Retired Congressman Lee Hamilton has warned of the perils of political ideology, calling the body where he spent 34 years “noxiously partisan.” Now, he worries the divide is downright dangerous. A co-chairman of the 9/11 Commission, Hamilton and fell

    July 27, 2014

  • PUBLIC FORUM: Letters for Sunday, July 27, 2014 Residents want to see development pactI’ve been attending the Utility Service Board monthly meetings for the past several months to better understand the ongoing plans for first Pyrolyzer and now a purchase agreement with Total Concept Solutions.Thre

    July 27, 2014

  • DORAN: How to handle the pool problem By Terry DoranGuest columnistAs a longtime board member of the parks board and having grown up nearby, it troubles me to read of the decision to close the city pool at Tower Park. This is obviously not a new discussion. I sat in on many meetings with

    July 27, 2014

  • WOLFSIE: A trip to end all trips My wife is planning a very exciting vacation to celebrate our 35th wedding anniversary. This was a big surprise to me. Not the vacation part, but the 35 years. I thought it was 34. Right now she is on the back porch, the patio table stacked high with

    July 25, 2014

  • FREY: Hero pilot still on a mission to save lives Ordinary people who live their lives, do something spectacular one day, and then embrace a great cause after retirement are tops in my book.Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger III is such an individual. He is the pilot who safely landed a US Airways airplan

    July 25, 2014

  • HAMILTON: Why incumbents keep getting reelected It’s no news that Congress is unpopular. In fact, at times it seems like the only real novelty on Capitol Hill would be a jump in its approval rating. In June, a Gallup poll found members’ standing with the American people at a historic low for a mid

    July 24, 2014

Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Poll

Should grocery and convenience stores be allowed to sell cold beer?

Yes
No
Unsure
     View Results
Featured Ads
AP Video
Kerry: Humanitarian Cease-fire Efforts Continue Raw: Corruption Trial Begins for Former Va Gov. The Carbon Trap: US Exports Global Warming UN Security Council Calls for Gaza Cease-fire Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating 13 Struck by Lightning on Calif. Beach Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted Israel, Hamas Trade Fire Despite Truce in Gaza Italy's Nibali Set to Win First Tour De France Raw: Shipwrecked Concordia Completes Last Voyage Raw: Sea Turtle Hatchlings Emerge From Nest Raw: Massive Dust Storm Covers Phoenix 12-hour Cease-fire in Gaza Fighting Begins Raw: Bolivian Dancers Attempt to Break Record Raw: Israel, Palestine Supporters Rally in US Raw: Air Algerie Flight 5017 Wreckage Virginia Governor Tours Tornado Aftermath Judge Faces Heat Over Offer to Help Migrant Kids Kangaroo Goes Missing in Oklahoma More M17 Bodies Return, Sanctions on Russia Grow
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.