WASHINGTON — At a time when our democracy is at stake, on many fronts, Democrats nationwide, including former President Barack Obama, issued a conservative-fueled book ban targeting schools and public libraries on Monday. finally opposed to
Book bans have emerged as an issue that could galvanize voters on both the left and the right into the 2024 election cycle, from local contests over libraries and school boards to the White House.
Texas, Florida, Missouri, Utah, and South Carolina are all red states and have the most common book bans.
In June, Blue Illinois became the first U.S. state to legally protect libraries from “attempts to ban, remove, or otherwise restrict access to books and other materials.”
The new law, which was pushed by Secretary of State Alexi Giannurias and signed by Gov. It came into effect after it announced that there had been 67 attempts to ban it. Book.
PEN America, a nonprofit that tracks bans, found in the first half of the year: For the 2022-23 academic year, 874 unique titles have been banned.
Against this background:
- In an “open letter” to librarians on Monday, President Obama said, “Some of the books that shaped my life today, and the lives of many people, are the lives of people who disagree with certain ideas and points of view. It is no coincidence that these “banned books” are often written or featured by people of color, Indigenous peoples, and members of the LGBTQ+ community. However, books by conservative authors, “provocative” words and scenes are subject to removal.
“In any case, the urge seems to be to remain silent rather than engaging, countering, learning from, or trying to understand an opinion that disagrees with them.”
President Obama called for support for the Chicago-based American Library Association’s “Unite Against Book Bans” campaign.
President Obama has also arranged to appear in four TikTok videos promoting books and readings to be released this week, the first of which was from the Kankakee Public Library. The video ends with President Obama reading a book and drinking a mug from the Kankakee Public Library.
Kankakee Public Library Director Alison Beasley told The Sun-Times that the library has not been targeted by book-banning activists and that the Obama team chose the Kankakee Library because of its robust TikTok account. .
- First Lady Jill Biden spoke Monday at the Institute of Museum and Library Services’ 2023 National Medal Award Ceremony at the White House, without directly addressing the book ban, saying: We tell you something new every time we visit. They interweave the stories of our country’s past, present and future. And it protects our freedom to learn, explore, and choose the ideas and philosophies that shape us without fear of silence or censorship. ”
- Speaking at the Rainbow Push Coalition convention in Chicago on Sunday, Vice President Kamala Harris more outspokenly denounced extremists stepping up the anti-book movement.
“In 2023, the year of our Lord, these extremists banned books state by state across the United States, preventing them from teaching the complete history of America. We reject reasonable gun safety laws to uphold.
“Understand what is happening. I have.”
- Republican Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, who is running for president, has encouraged a book ban as part of his White House campaign, calling the “leftist movement” “fundamentally hostile to parental rights.” ” claims to be. He walks the school library with trash that “is littered with hardcore pornography and pedophilia.”
- The Trumpist-obsessed Illinois Republican Party has added to its pornographic point by allowing public libraries to ” Mandatory stock of obscene materials,” he erroneously said in a tweet. ”
The banning of this book is useful because it activates people who might otherwise not be involved, which the Right uses as a gateway to politics.
As President Joe Biden said at the White House on July 4 at the 2023 National Education Association Annual Meeting, “Teachers and educational institutions should not face politicians seeking political gain by banning books.” Let’s face each other together.”
“Did you ever think you’d find yourself in a situation where you’re talking about book bans in the United States?”
No, it’s not.
https://chicago.suntimes.com/columnists/2023/7/17/23798325/barack-obama-in-tiktok-starring-kankakee-public-library-staffers-launches-drive-against-book-bans President Barack Obama launches campaign against book ban on TikTok featuring Kankakee Public Library staff