After Mountain View High School in Idaho banned a controversial book titled The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian from its reading list, a student at the school organized a free distribution of the book at a nearby park so interested students would still be able to read it. However, when Christian parents found out about this, they were furious and attempted to call the police to stop the event because they believe the book is too sexual and anti-Christian.
“If God hadn’t wanted us to masturbate, then God wouldn’t have given us thumbs,” is among the many lines in the book that concerned parents seemed to have a problem with.
Though most Christian parents shrugged and argued over whether 10th grade students should have access to such a candid book, the vocal minority won out and that is when Brady Kissel took a few copies to a nearby park to hand them over free of cost to students who were interested in reading it. Within an hour, police gathered at the spot but after speaking to Kissel, they concluded that there was nothing illegal about what he was doing and so they left without taking further action.
The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian was published in 2007 and it is one of the most popular books for schools that want to discuss the life of Native American children growing up today. Both critics and students have received the book with open arms because of its impeccable use of wit and charm, so much so that when it was banned, a petition circulated inside after Mountain View High School received more than 300 signatures, compelling authorities to reinstate the book in its reading list. The book, written by a Native American author Sherman Alexie, isn’t particularly anti-Christian, except it raises several questions about religion – questions similar to those raised by most teens who wrestle themselves while trying to discover their identities.
Alexie was outraged when schools in Idaho decided to remove the book from their reading lists, saying, “Book banners want to control debate and limit the imagination. I encourage debate and celebrate imagination.”
Recently, book censorships seem to have increased, a trend that was last seen during the 1960s and 70s when Americans witnessed a book banning mania with various districts attempting to do away with certain publications.
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It isn't the book itself these people fear, but the fact that it asks people to challenge preconceived notions and ideas. It encourages freethinking and critical thinking. Nearly every religion has a long history of this attitude of trying to crush anything which may cause people to question or criticize their doctrines and dogma. The real shame is that these people still have not learned that you cannot stop the train of progress, and if you're dumb enough to stand on the tracks you're going to get run over.