ghosts of Banned Books Weeks past: 2005 quotables

2006 BBW; Read Banned Books: They're Your Ticket to Freedom
At my former place of employment, I was seldom confused for what anyone would call a political conservative. In fact, I was generally acknowledged and tolerated as the company liberal.

Of course, what I always found perplexing was that the tell-tale sign of my liberality seemed to be the posters that adorned the walls of my office. I didn't think they were all that subversive to the conservative climate; in fact, I thought that they were quite apropos for a publishing house. I mean, they were just posters with quotes about why censoring and banning books is bad.

Anyway, I feel inclined now to share my subversive quotables with you. They're from last year's Banned Books Week posters. Enjoy.

"A censor is a man who knows more than he thinks you ought to." Granville Hicks

"Did you ever hear anyone say, 'That work had better be banned because I might read it and it would be very damaging to me?'" Joseph Henry Jackson

"When in doubt, go to the library." from Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by J. K. Rowling

"And in my experience, well-read people are less likely to be evil." from The Slippery Slope by Lemony Snicket

"Spare the sword, summon a book." from Yo, Vikings! by Judith Byron Schachner

"All the secrets of the world are contained in books. Read at your own risk." Lemony Snicket

"If she could have done one thing to make absolutely sure that every single person in this school will read your interview, it was banning it!" Hermione to Harry in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix by J. K. Rowling

"Books and ideas are the most effective weapons against intolerance and ignorance." Lyndon Johnson

"Censorship is crippling, negating, stifling. It should be unthinkable in a country like ours." Norma Fox Mazer

"I'm not a rebel, trying to stir things up just to be provocative. I'm doing it because I feel like writing about real life. I still can't believe there's anything objectionable about telling it like it is." Norma Klein

"What is freedom of expression? Without the freedom to offend, it ceases to exist." Ahmed Salman Rushdie

"If [the] book be false in its facts, disprove them; if false in its reasoning, refute it. But, for God's sake, let us freely hear both sides, if we choose." Thomas Jefferson

"I have met thousands of children now, and not even one time has a child come up to me and said, 'Ms. Rowling, I'm so glad I've read these books because now I want to be a witch.'" J. K. Rowling

"You don't have to burn books to destroy a culture. Just get people to stop reading them." Ray Bradbury

"But it's not just the books under fire now that worry me. It is the books that will never be written. The books that will never be read. And all due to the fear of censorship. As always, young readers will be the real losers." Judy Blume

"Censorship is telling a man he can't have a steak just because a baby can't chew it." Mark Twain

"Restriction of free thought and free speech is the most dangerous of all subversions. It is the one un-American act that could most easily defeat us." William O. Douglas

"If there is any fixed star in our constitutional constellation, it is that no official, high or petty, can prescribe what shall be orthodox in politics, nationalism, religion, or other matters of opinion or force citizens to confess by word or act their faith therein." Robert H. Jackson

"Censorship, like charity, should begin at home, but unlike charity, it should end there." Clare Boothe Luce

"They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety." Benjamin Franklin

"If there is a bedrock principle underlying the First Amendment, it is that the government may not prohibit the expression of an idea simply because society finds the idea itself offensive or disagreeable." William J. Brennan, Jr.

"If we don't believe in freedom of expression for people we despise, we don't believe in it at all." Noam Chomsky


Anonymous said...

Love the Lemony Snicket quote. I think I might put that on my screen saver at work.

Anonymous said...

And look at you! Three days in a row!

Desmama said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Edgy said...

I know. Although, what with working until 9 tonight, I wonder if I'll pull another post out of my hat today. I should have saved the quotables . . .

Nectar said...

"If she could have done one thing to make absolutely sure that every single person in this school will read your interview, it was banning it!" Hermione to Harry in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix by J. K. Rowling

If banning a book would ensure that everyone would read it, then the ALA would not be so vigorous in suppressing book challenges. Obviously the ALA is afraid of challengers and their ideas, and resists every attempt to take a book off the REQUIRED reading lists, or change the status of the age appropriateness of a book.