To Read or Not To Read | Teen Ink

To Read or Not To Read

January 11, 2010
By hoodiequeen14 BRONZE, Evanston, Wyoming
hoodiequeen14 BRONZE, Evanston, Wyoming
2 articles 0 photos 6 comments

Favorite Quote:
My favorite personal quote is " Today will only happen once, MAKE IT WORTH IT!!!"

One summer I was looking forward to watching my favorite cartoon, Tom & Jerry, because school was out and I actually had time to watch it. A debate I saw on the news changed that idea real quick. They wanted to cancel the cartoon because of the “violence” and because some moms didn’t want their children watching it, so they were going to ruin it for the rest of us who found the show to be extremely hilarious, luckily they decided not to cancel it after all. This exact thing is happening to books, except instead of almost being banned, they are banned. Parents don’t want their children reading certain books, so they ruin it for the rest of us by getting those books banned. Many books have been banned, including a classic, “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.” A website called informed me that this book was banned for offensive language. If someone doesn’t like a book they shouldn’t read it, it’s that simple. Books Should NOT be banned because a few people don’t like them.

First of all we are all entitled to our own opinions. We will never agree with everyone and we need to respect that fact. For example the book, “A light in the Attic” by Shel Silverstein. Some people think that this book encourages suicide, cannibalism, and for children to be disobedient. I have read that book before and I thought that it was funny, and I’m pretty sure that I didn’t commit suicide or become a cannibal and I am still obedient towards my elders, but this is just my opinion that it is a good book and as I said before others are entitled to their opinion. However, the book still got banned in some areas, thank goodness that it didn’t get banned everywhere! Another example is when my class had to read, “A Christmas Carol” by Charles Dickens because I could not stand that book. It was so confusing and way too repetitive, but just because I don’t like it doesn’t mean that I’m going to try to get it banned. There are other people in this world with opinions and I’m sure some of them may like it, so why ruin it for them? Also, I don’t agree with religious books being in a public school library, but maybe someone else likes them there so I won’t try to get those banned either. Obviously we can’t please everyone and people need to realize that.

Another argument I have is the fact that in the Constitution the first amendment gives us the right to freedom of religion, speech, to assemble as a community in a peaceful manner, and the right to print whatever we want for the press or media which also gives us the right to read it. If they ban books that some people don’t like they are basically violating our rights. Unless they can find some sort of loophole around the constitution, no one should be able to ban a book.

My last argument, which I’m sure I could come up with many more is that if you are a concerned parent just trying to protect your kid, monitor what they are reading. Parents are making everyone else responsible for making sure that their kids don’t read certain books by getting the books banned. No one except the parents should be responsible for what their children read. I can guarantee that the only time that anyone can force you to read something is for a job or at school, but I doubt that they will ever make you read anything so horrible that it shouldn’t have ever been written. So, other than that everyone has the choice to read the book no one can force anyone to read a book. It really shouldn’t be that hard to monitor your kid’s or your own reading, see what a much better solution that is?

To read or not to read? The choice is up to whoever ends up asking themselves the question. Either way banning books is an unacceptable way to deal with a book that someone doesn’t like. Reading is our choice and our right! A book is nothing more than paper bound together with words on it, honestly, people, what harm can it do? It is sooo much more work to try to get a book banned than it is to not even pick it up in the first place. So steer clear of books you don’t like, but don’t ban the books!

The author's comments:
I was inspired to do this piece after looking for a topic for an essay in English and I saw how many books were being banned in different places from a website that I mentioned in my article. This made me mad because if the book was good enough to be published then it should be good enough to be read. The auther didn't take all the time to write the book for it to be banned.

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