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Book Banning in U.S. Classrooms and Libraries

Where Do You Stand on Book Banning?

On Family Circle's Facebook page, we asked where you stood on the book-banning debate. The response was overwhelming—and decidedly in favor of unlimited access and an individual's right to choose.

What happened to our First Amendment rights and a parent's responsibility to monitor her own children? Parents should do their job and stop forcing the rest of us to live in their "bubbles." If you don't want your child to read something, don't buy it or check it out of the library. And if your child chooses to sneak behind your back and read it, what does that say about your relationship? STOP BANNING BOOKS. —Penny App

School libraries should remove books they consider inappropriate from their shelves. In today's society, children are exposed to way too many inappropriate things at such a young age. They need to be allowed to be sweet and innocent for as long as possible, because the time will come too quickly when they will have to be adults. —Melissa Stripling

I think it is fine to ban books in public places, where all content should be appropriate to the general public. If someone wants to read a banned book, she can buy it. —Andrea McGuinness

Banning books and labeling it "protecting our kids" is just lazy parenting. —Kathy Balch

I don't understand why parents get all crazy about the books that they believe shouldn't be in the library, but don't care about what their child watches on television, what video games he plays or what their child is doing in a public place. [People should] parent their children rather than allow—or demand—that another entity or institution do the job for them. —Heidi Lucas Decker

It is hard enough to find books that engage a child. We need to encourage reading and have an array of choices for our children. My son likes Captain Underpants [a frequently challenged book]. It's not fabulous literature, but it gets him to read. Hopefully there's life after that! —Erica Rhodes Recker

I can see how a school library might not have certain books that are "inappropriate," but books should never be banned from a public library. —Kylie Borgman

As a parent to two teens and a 5-year-old, I believe book banning is unnecessary censorship. A library should be a magical place where ANYTHING is possible. Where ALL KINDS of books can be found. Where a kid can get LOST in the stories, in the words. Parents should be on hand to explain and give context to what their kids read. The Hunger Games is no more violent than classic books written by Stephen King. I am just glad that my kids love to read. In this day and age, that is a BLESSING. —Jaime Ayala

Originally published in the September 2012 issue of Family Circle magazine.