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Monday, 27 September 2010

BLOGGERS SPEAK OUT

I don't usually syndicate another blogger's post, but, I think this warrants it. I came across this issue a bit late still, I would like to show my support of the "Bloggers Speak Out" movement, I am reposting Natalie's (of Mindful Musings) post regarding this proposed book banning in schools:

Book Bloggers Speak Out

Mindful Musings
Bloggers Speak Out is a movement sparked by the recent article, "Filthy Books Demeaning to Republic Education" by Dr. Wesley Scroggins that was published in the Springfield, MO News-Leader on September 18th. In this article, Scroggins vehemently advocates the censorship of books in schools, and specifically requests that the following books be removed from the Republic school system: Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson, Twenty Boy Summer by Sarah Ockler, and Slaughterhouse Five by Kurt Vonnegut. To show our support of these authors and to fight against book banning and censorship, we have decided to take action and speak out.

Go here: http://themindfulmusingsbookblog.blogspot.com/2010/09/book-bloggers-speak-out-listing-of.html for a full list of links of bloggers speaking out against book banning and censorship--in the form of giveaways, posts, and reviews. Some are "officially" participating in what I'm calling Bloggers Speak Out, and others are posts that I've found around the blogosphere. If you get time, you should definitely check them out!

A HUGE HUGE HUGE thanks goes out to all of these bloggers for encouraging everyone to stand up and speak out! You guys are all absolutely fabulous, and if I could give each and every one of you a cookie, I totally would!
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On another note, I brought up Scroggins' article at the Missouri State University English Society meeting yesterday, and as a result (and in honer of Banned Books Week), we're doing an on-campus reading from banned books on Thursday of next week!

For those of you in the area, the event will take place from around 2-6 in the outdoor amphitheater directly in front of Strong and Glass Halls.

Interesting fact: Dr. Wesley Scroggins' office is in Glass. I wonder if he'll see us. Hmm....Maybe we should send him a formal invite?
Source: Natalie's article was taken from Mindful Musings at http://themindfulmusingsbookblog.blogspot.com/2010/09/book-bloggers-speak-out-listing-of.html on 26/09/2010.

Here is what Book Junkies has to say about it:
BLOGGERS SPEAK OUT!
This week a lot has been taking place within the online community concerning this ARTICLE by a Dr. Wesley Scroggins.

We've always lived in a society where freedom of speech has been a quality bestowed upon us by parents, teachers, and our community. Not too mention Freedom of Speech is our right as human beings. What Dr. Wesley Scroggins is claiming in his article takes away that Freedom. Not only does he strip us all of our individual freedom to choose what we read, he has taken away our right to be heard. There are so many instances where women and men, boys and girls, go through things we can't even begin to imagine - things that change their lives forever, and they don't always know how to deal with it. In the article, Scroggins claims that,

"Sex education curriculum in the fourth grade includes topics on reproduction. Is this what parents and taxpayers in this community want their children exposed to in school? Is this how taxpayers want their tax money used? Equally shocking is the content of the high school English classes. In high school English classes, children are required to read and view material that should be classified as soft pornography."

The last time we checked, the age in which children are now sexually active has increased exponentially. Why is it so wrong for children to learn about sex education at an early age? It is often the case that children who are not educated in sexual reproduction end up pregnant or sexually active at early ages. No, sex education at a 4th grade level will probably not stop the age in which teens begin having sex, but isn't that up to the parents to decide? If they are unhappy with the material being covered, they should speak to their child's teacher and see if something can be worked out.

Now, lets begin on the subject of his apparent "soft pornography" issue. Trying to even fathom what kind of man can deduce rape to soft pornography is excruciatingly difficult to comprehend. Soft Pornography by definition is something in which is enjoyed -either voyeuristically or read. Rape is an act UNWANTED by the victim. It is something in which far too many have to deal with and are unsure how to go about dealing with the impact this violent act has had on their lives. Books like Speak (by Laurie Halse Anderson), allow for teens who are going through the same thing as the main character, or perhaps another issue, to relate and seek the help they need. Books like Speak allow for victims of unwanted crimes, image issues etc to know they are not alone. Scroggin comments by saying,

One such book is called "Speak." They also watch the movie. This is a book about a very dysfunctional family. Schoolteachers are losers, adults are losers and the cheerleading squad scores more than the football team. They have sex on Saturday night and then are goddesses at church on Sunday morning. The cheer squad also gets their group-rate abortions at prom time. As the main character in the book is alone with a boy who is touching her female parts, she makes the statement that this is what high school is supposed to feel like. The boy then rapes her on the next page. Actually, the book and movie both contain two rape scenes.

Apparently Mr. Scroggins has not attended high school, which makes me begin to wonder how he managed to get his doctorate. Speak is dealing with REAL issues that take place everyday in high schools - not only in North America, but around the world as well. Girls DO deal with having unprotected sex and unwanted pregnancies. Families can be dysfunctional; does that make them less loving? No! As we have yet to read Speak, we are not sure what exactly takes place, but we've seen girls so self conscience and down on their selves, that they are so broken, the acts they do or partake in, happen without them even realizing. They are so numb by this point, they think they are worthless. Apparently the pain and suffering a rape victim goes through means nothing to Scroggins. Apparently it is all in good fun - soft porn.

Books should not be censored. Who gives anyone the right to tell others what they can or cannot read or what they can or cannot write? Obviously Scroggins has lived a beyond ignorant and sheltered life. His world must be full of rainbows and butterflies, I'm sure he shits to perfection as well. His mind is deluded and his world is not reality.

Please speak out against censorship! It is through our voices, people like Scroggins will stop telling us what our Freedom means. We are disgusted with people like Scroggins who think they know best for an entire population.
Source: Above quoted article was taken from Book Junkies at http://acbookjunkies.blogspot.com/2010/09/bloggers-speak-out.html on 26/09/2010.

I believe that one of the reasons why it is very difficult for victims of rape, domestic abuse and bullying to come forward and seek help is because of narrow-minded people like Scroggins. Therefore they need to be stopped. But that is just my own opinion. I encourage you to read on and make up your own mind.

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