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Author Topic: Book Banning  (Read 7324 times)

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Offline VandrenTopic starter

Book Banning
« on: April 16, 2006, 10:19:36 PM »
Latest case of stupidity:

Cross-posted from Gwinnett Daily Post, Georgia

Board to consider request to ban 'Harry Potter' books

04/14/2006 -
By Rubina Madan
Staff Writer

LAWRENCEVILLE - The "Harry Potter" book series may soon be taken off theshelves of all media centers in Gwinnett County Public Schools if a parent'sappeal is successful. A parent of students at J.C. Magill Elementary School filed appeal forms foreach of the books, requesting the wildly popular series be removed frompublic school libraries. On the forms, she wrote that she objected to the series' "evil themes, witchcraft, demonic activity, murder, evil blood sacrifice, spells and teaching children all of this." She wrote she had not read the series because it is long, and she is a working mother of four.  A public hearing will be held on the matter at 2 p.m. Thursday, in accordance with the Gwinnett County Board of Education's policies for "Instructional Materials Selection." An appointed hearing officer will  hear  testimony from the parent, school system officials and concerned  residents.

Both the local school and system media committees have recommended the books remain on the shelves.
Based on all the testimony, the hearing officer will prepare findings and recommendations to the Board of Education. The final decision will be made by the school board within a few weeks of the hearing. Any Gwinnett County resident who wishes to speak at the hearing will be able to do so by submitting a written request. Requests may be mailed to the Superintendent's Office, Gwinnett County Public Schools, 437 Old Peachtree Road N.W, Suwanee, GA 30024, or may be faxed to 678-301-6030. All written requests must be submitted no later than 48 hours before the hearing.

Offline Hunter

Re: Book Banning
« Reply #1 on: April 16, 2006, 10:25:22 PM »
I'm surprised this hasn't popped up sooner.  And I expect that she'll win (because I think that she's correct).
« Last Edit: April 17, 2006, 03:54:14 AM by Hunter »

Offline Ariabella

Re: Book Banning
« Reply #2 on: April 16, 2006, 10:28:45 PM »
I think it's happened before somewhere. The shame is, they should be happy that their children are being encouraged to read. And of course, over all it teaches that Harry and his friends choose good over evil and all of that.

Bet she took her kids to the movies though.

Her one downfall might be her admittal that she hadn't read the books.

Offline Hunter

Re: Book Banning
« Reply #3 on: April 16, 2006, 10:30:45 PM »
I understand her perspective.  To her (and many parents), it's like handing their kids the satanic bible.  It's not necessarily ignorance (I know of some well educated people who hate the entire series for similar reasons, including people who specialize in occultic crime) but a difference in world view.

Offline Ariabella

Re: Book Banning
« Reply #4 on: April 16, 2006, 10:33:04 PM »
Hmm, well admittedly, I turned off the first movie when they  were finding out about the unicorns that were killed, I can understand that too. I guess it's just my personal view, I'd rather my kids read something like that that is fantasy, rather than get their hands on something that can teach them to build a bomb with fertilizer or something like that.

Offline VandrenTopic starter

Re: Book Banning
« Reply #5 on: April 16, 2006, 10:58:24 PM »
I'm surprised this hasn't popped up sooner.  And I expect that she'll win.

It's popped up hundreds of times.  However, this case I doubt she'll win, thanks to sheer ignorance and the public hearing.

Quote
(because she's technically correct)

How do you figure?

1) evil themes - Ok, Voldemort, sure.  Malfoys, sure.  But that's . . . hmm . . . 10-25% or te "on-stage" parts of the books, and ignores the other 75-90% of the books which actually teach "good Christian" values - love, friendship, loyalty, etc.

2) witchcraft - That's a laugh.  And based solely on ignorance.

3) demonic activity - Haven't seen any of that in six books so far.

4) murder - Alright, yep, this one's in there . . . in the books targetting a 14-16 year old audience . . .

5) evil blood sacrifice - Alright, once.

6) spells and teaching children - Please . . . waving a wand and spouting pseudo-Latin's got as much to do with "spells" and "teaching children" magic as walking across the street.

Offline tcost

Re: Book Banning
« Reply #6 on: April 16, 2006, 11:08:24 PM »
Button Gwinnett, whose vote was indispensible for passing the Declaration of Independence, might have some interesting things to say about banning books and the themes of the Harry Potter books in general.  But, of course, he won't be at the hearing of the Gwinnett County Public School Board.

When you come right down to it, the Potter books are about overcoming prejudice and ignorance.  I hope that that truth makes it into the debate.

What one county school board decides will not win or lose the ongoing battle that this argument represents.  But if and when it comes to your town, to your county, it behooves us all to make our voices heard.  And you can count on it that this argument will be coming soon to a council chamber near you.

Offline VandrenTopic starter

Re: Book Banning
« Reply #7 on: April 16, 2006, 11:21:30 PM »
When you come right down to it, the Potter books are about overcoming prejudice and ignorance.  I hope that that truth makes it into the debate.

Exactly what I spent multiple days discussing when I last taught Azkaban.  :)

Offline Hunter

Re: Book Banning
« Reply #8 on: April 16, 2006, 11:25:49 PM »
I'm not going to debate it with you (because I happen to agree with the woman trying to get the books banned).

Offline Zakharra

Re: Book Banning
« Reply #9 on: April 16, 2006, 11:32:34 PM »
I'm not going to debate it with you (because I happen to agree with the woman trying to get the books banned).

   :o

Offline Violet Maui

Re: Book Banning
« Reply #10 on: April 16, 2006, 11:37:08 PM »
Can't we all just get along? X_x;;; Males, sheesh.

Offline tcost

Re: Book Banning
« Reply #11 on: April 16, 2006, 11:40:27 PM »
I'm not going to debate it with you (because I happen to agree with the woman trying to get the books banned).

Gosh -- what can I possibly say to that?

Hunter, if you support this woman, you should realize that saying so is apt to be like waving a red flag in front of a bull in a place like this.  Not only are the people here apt to be hostile to banning books in general, a significant number are probably friends of witchcraft.

For my own part -- and I'm not asking you for a response here, Hunter, just stating more clearly than I may have earlier my own opinion -- I think that most youngsters, even earlier than their teens, will be benefitted much more than harmed by the Potter books.  And that if any books at all are to be banned (which is a position I take only with a bad taste in my mouth), we'd do better by banning books which glorify war rather than those that might be seen as encouraging witchcraft.

Offline Hunter

Re: Book Banning
« Reply #12 on: April 16, 2006, 11:47:47 PM »
Like I said, I'm not going to debate it.  Does it surprise people that much that there are people that might agree with someone other than the majority of what is expressed here?

I'm not one for banning books in general.

Offline tcost

Re: Book Banning
« Reply #13 on: April 16, 2006, 11:56:00 PM »
Like I said, I'm not going to debate it.  Does it surprise people that much that there are people that might agree with someone other than the majority of what is expressed here?

I'm not one for banning books in general.

No, I'm not surprised at someone being politically incorrect.  The United States is supposed to be a free country (which is of course one of the most important reasons why I disagree with you about this).  Part of that liberty includes a usually unspoken perogative to be inconsistent -- especially in an instance like this when the inconsistency is a matter of perspective. 

On the other hand, as far as it goes, I am somewhat surprised that there is anyone here who would support this proposition.  But while I disagree with you, I defend your right to your opinion.

Offline Elvi

Re: Book Banning
« Reply #14 on: April 17, 2006, 12:54:55 AM »
It's the responcibility of every parent to ensure that their opinions and morals are handed down to their children, whether others see them as right or wrong.
It is not the right for every parent to insist that everything they see as 'bad' to be banned.

If this woman feels that these books are not suitable for her children, then it is up to her to make sure her children don't read them, not to insist that everyone elses don't.

These books have inspired a child who was afraid of reading, because she has dyslexia, to stick her nose in a book and finnish it then want to read more. They have inspired discussion on issues in those books, that have reflected into real life and also about commercialism,  the film industry, the dangers of writers becoming stail, sexuality and many others things.

These books and others have made my daughter want to read, talk to us and use her imagination.
That is not a bad thing, that is a good thing.
I have many books in my collection that she is beginning to dip into, some I have said that she needs to wait for a while to read, others I have said go ahead, see what you think.

If (and I very much doubt it in this country) these books, or any others that I feel could inspire my daughter and widen her horizen, were banned, I would simply buy them on the 'black market', or just a book shop, were they not available to her from libruaries.

 

Offline Max

Re: Book Banning
« Reply #15 on: April 17, 2006, 01:11:53 AM »
The "Harry Potter" book series may soon be taken off theshelves of all media centers in Gwinnett County Public Schools if a parent'sappeal is successful.

If I am understanding that part correctly, the books would be removed from the school's libraries, but would still be available in the public libraries.  I have never read the books, and doubt I ever will.  And would still be available at book shops, amazon.com, and such for purchase.  I think it is wrong, but, there has to be a limit of what is available.  What is allowed in the schools?  Harry Potter, the Anarchist Cookbook, Mein Kamph? 

I remember my high school library had the last book.  Even checked it out, but never did read it.  Do we ban that?  How about Karl Marx?  If we don't, what do we allow in the public school libraries.  I think it is something that needs to be thought over.  Just how much do we allow into the schools?  Someone correct me if I am wrong, but isn't Mein Kamph banned in Germany? 

I don't think banning the Harry Potter books is a good idea.  But, some books should be.  I just think we all need to decide which ones to ban.  Hope we can decide which ones without too much animonsity.

Oh, and sorry if I got the spelling of Hitler's book wrong.

Offline ZK

Re: Book Banning
« Reply #16 on: April 17, 2006, 01:32:27 AM »
I live in GA and it just keeps getting stranger and stranger. O.o

Offline Lilac

Re: Book Banning
« Reply #17 on: April 17, 2006, 01:41:44 AM »
I understand her perspective.  To her (and many parents), it's like handing their kids the satanic bible.  It's not necessarily ignorance (I know of some well educated people who hate the entire series for similar reasons, including people who specialize in occultic crime) but a difference in world view.

...'occultic crime'?

Offline ZK

Re: Book Banning
« Reply #18 on: April 17, 2006, 01:45:38 AM »
A stab at Paganism I suppose, I could be wrong. Mainly that of Wicca and various other religions. I don't care to see this turn into a religious debate either.

Note: Since Wicca and basic Paganism tends to be lumped together in with the Occult as a whole.

As well, could also be a pessimistic view upon those who believe in the supernatural as a whole, I don't know, let Hunter clarify things.
« Last Edit: April 17, 2006, 01:49:17 AM by Z.K. »

Offline Elvi

Re: Book Banning
« Reply #19 on: April 17, 2006, 01:49:35 AM »
I have copies of those  books Max, Mein Kampf is a very interesting read.
We also watched a doccumentary series on the Hitler youth and how the children of Germany were indoctrinated.
Funnily enough it was the Beast girl, (10 year old daughter), who initiated it's watching and we watched it with her, then discussed it, sothat she could form her own oppinions about how it was done.
We also have other political books here, if she wants to read them, when she is old enough to do so, then she is welcome to and we will discuss that with her.

Offline Max

Re: Book Banning
« Reply #20 on: April 17, 2006, 02:11:46 AM »
We also have other political books here, if she wants to read them, when she is old enough to do so, then she is welcome to and we will discuss that with her.

And who decides that she is old enough?  Don't get me wrong, she seems very smart.  But other kids... aren't.  And anyway, to get back to my point, who decides?   The parents?  The school?  Should certain books be kept out of the hands and minds of young people. 

I don't think banning most books is a good idea.  Mein Kamph, yes.  Harry Potter, no.  I think the parents should know what their kids are reading.  The lady in question doesn't, but at least she seems to be trying to keep harmful books (at least to her very limited understanding) away from her kids.  Many parents might not be bothered to try.  And that is as scary to me than some wacko trying to ban the Harry Potter books.




Offline Elvi

Re: Book Banning
« Reply #21 on: April 17, 2006, 02:20:57 AM »
If it is an educational matter, then when the children reach the age where they are being educated about that subject.
If it is a parental matter, when the parents decide that their child is old enough to come to the right conclusions about the content of that book.

Funnily enough, Beast girl has just got up and she started talking about a book she is reading at the moment. (It's just past 08:00am here)
I told her about this discussion.
Her take on it?
She sits down and watches the news, there are real things going on like murders, bombings, wars, starvation and all the other bad stuff in the world and this lady wants to ban a fairy tale?

Offline Hunter

Re: Book Banning
« Reply #22 on: April 17, 2006, 02:27:13 AM »

Offline Lilac

Re: Book Banning
« Reply #23 on: April 17, 2006, 03:50:34 AM »
http://www.holysmoke.org/report/25.htm

So, these people, in their wisdom, take crimes committed by what are likely mentally ill individuals and, instead, classify it under 'occult' because it incorporates some belief that they are not familiar with?

Anyway, Hunter...

Quote
I'm not going to debate it with you (because I happen to agree with the woman trying to get the books banned).

...You said she was technically correct in your first post.  I do not, particularly, care if you hold one view or another, but if you are going to state something like that, either give reasons or concede the point.  Sentences like these are inflammatory "Here, I forced my statement down your throat but I'm not going to bother paying attention to yours."

Offline Elvi

Re: Book Banning
« Reply #24 on: April 17, 2006, 04:03:37 AM »
I'm surprised this hasn't popped up sooner.  And I expect that she'll win (because I think that she's correct).

So, I believe the change is from she is correct to I think she is correct?

That still does not validate your arguement, nor does it cover the point that Lilac raised about you adding nothing to a discussion other than a blank comment.
Leaving us unable to confirm nor deny that your point of view is right/wrong/or you are talking out of your behind.