Monday, April 02, 2012

Vonnegut, Arizona, and remembering the attempt to force the West Bend Library to censor books.

Rust never sleeps, and neither do those who want to force their values, values without virtue, on the rest of us.

From Vonnegut To Tucson, Books Are Sacred to Free People For Good Reasons | Common Dreams
Not content with banning  Hispanic studies and other dangerous reading from high schools, Arizona's superintendent of schools now wants  to take the fight to universities, where teachers learned "this toxic thing" to begin with. In his  honor, a 1973 letter  from Kurt Vonnegut to a North Dakota school board chairman who banned, and then burned for good measure, all of the school's 32 copies of Slaughterhouse-Five after a teacher used it in his classroom. Vonnegut noted his books "do not argue in favor of wildness of any kind - they beg that people be kinder and more responsible than they often are." He then slammed the "rotten lesson you taught young people" and charged that with such  "ignorant, harsh, un-American" exercising of one's authority  over children,  "people are entitled to call you bad citizens and fools. Even your own children are entitled to call you that."

Follow the link for the rest of Vonnegut's wonderful letter.

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