Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Banned Books, and Why Parents Take Books From Their Children and/or How They Should Do It

I feel like I just need to say this.

In Tea Time, we talked about banned books, and I saw a lot of tweets from people getting upset about parents wanting shelter their children from reading a book because of the content.

That is totally ok.

What is NOT ok, is taking the book, or requesting it to be banned (because than other kids can't read it, and they might enjoy it, and it might help them in some way), and telling their child you can't read it just because. They can't read it because...give reasons. Give reasons to your children WHY. It makes them feel like they're important, and you love them. This is speaking from a child's point of view.

My mom is the most amazing mom in the world, and yes, I've gotten upset at her for taking books from me, or telling me I can't watch something. But it's for the better, and us kids just need to understand this. She also gave me reasons, and good reasons they were.

I'm not allowed to read Harry Potter, or Twilight.

I wasn't allowed to read The Hunger Games for the longest time, but now, I'm allowed, and I'm glad I waited.

Maybe someday, I'll be allowed to read Harry Potter, and Twilight. When I'm eighteen, and I move out of the house, I can read whatever I want, but for now, my mom makes sure that I'm save, and 'sheltered' as much as she can.

Because she loves me.

-Madison xoxo

It's Banned Books Week next week! Read a banned book!! Tweet it, etc. :D


  1. What were your mom's reasons for not letting you read Harry Potter and Twilight?

    1. Harry Potter: witches and wizards are real, and they do not good things. I'm not saying that HP is bad, but my mom just wanted me not to have wizards and witches in my head.

      Twilight: quite honestly, I don't even want to read it. Vampires and werewolves are something that my mom frowns upon, and I agree with her. I am very careful when reading a book about werewolves or vampires. Actually, I've never read a book about vampires, and I don't think I will any time soon.

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  3. Hi, Madison --

    I think your attitude to your mom's decision not to let you read certain books yet is lovely and speaks very well of you. You obviously respect your mom's judgment and her authority over you, even if you don't always understand or agree with her views, and you know that she isn't doing this out of mean-spiritedness but out of love. That shows a lot of wisdom and empathy, and I hope your mom appreciates just how special that is!

    And although commenters like our brave and eloquent Anonymous seem to think that your mom is keeping you from enriching your mind and expanding your horizons as a human being, let's be real here. Sure, HP and Twilight are popular, but they're hardly the only stories in the world, or the best ones. They are not the embodiment of all wisdom and truth, or the source of dazzling revelations about the world and your place in it. Whether you read them at 13 or 18 (or never) is no big deal.

    I'm not saying that as a hater, either. I used to be a huge HP fan back in the day, and I've also read Twilight and think the author does some things really well. I also write MG & YA fantasy myself, so I'm not quick to dismiss the idea that stories can make a positive difference in people's lives. But neither do I believe that a mother asking her daughter to hold off on reading certain books that she's worried might have a negative influence is unreasonable. Especially when she has a daughter like you, who's mature enough to understand and appreciate the motives behind the ban and not mistake it for some kind of punishment.

    When I was in high school, I chose not to read certain books assigned to me in class because of "mature content" -- profanity, explicit sex, and the like. Each time I politely asked my English teacher if I could study a different book instead, and s/he was fine with that. Like you, I understood that it wasn't my place to tell my fellow students what to read or try to take the books away from them, and I never lectured anybody else on their reading habits -- but I reserved the right to choose the books I read according to my own conscience and the principles my parents had taught me. It sounds to me like you're doing the same thing, and I applaud you for it.

    Thanks for having the courage to write this. I hope you don't have to deal with any more people like Anonymous trying to push you into disrespecting your mom and rebelling against her just because they don't understand how anyone can live without reading Harry Potter.*

    God bless.
    - RJA

    * Seriously, Anonymous, get a grip. Millions of people lived rich and meaningful lives before J.K. Rowling wrote those books, and millions more people are doing just fine today without having read them. So stop talking about HP like it's essential to life and freedom, because it isn't.

    1. Thank you so much for this comment! <3


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