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06 October 2006


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Ah...and here you have the defining feature of those types of people: they will never, ever, be happy.


It's a junior high school. What's left in the free-for-all reading section? I suppose they will only have unfettered access to children's books. That's criminal. These are not people concerned with the physical and mental well-being and education of children. These are people who are looking to make ignorance compulsory.

Banned Books Week is so not healthy for me. I swear my head is about to explode.


Oh btw, on this subject, I sent this email to the Superindent and the principal of the Junior High of the Columbus-Brazoria Independent School District:

Dear Mz Bertholf and Mr Rylander,

Please bear in mind that the supreme court backs the freedom of school libraries, regardless of upset parents. Permission slips have also been ruled to not be a viable alternative to freedom of information.

Taken from:

Counts v. Cedarville School District, 295 F.Supp.2d 996 (W.D. Ark. 2003)
The school board of the Cedarville, Arkansas school district voted to restrict students' access to the Harry Potter books, on the grounds that the books promoted disobediance and disrespect for authority and dealt with witchcraft and the occult. As a result of the vote, students in the Cedarville school district were required to obtain a signed permission slip from their parents or guardians before they would be allowed to borrow any of the Harry Potter books from school libraries. The District Court overturned the Board's decision and ordered the books returned to unrestricted circulation, on the grounds that the restrictions violated students' First Amendment right to read and receive information. In so doing, the Court noted that while the Board necessarily performed highly discretionary functions related to the operation of the schools, it was still bound by the Bill of Rights and could not abridge students' First Amendment right to read a book on the basis of an undifferentiated fear of disturbance or because the Board disagreed with the ideas contained in the book.

Thanks for taking the time to read this,

Thanks for the vigilance Leila. (No this is not the first such email - every case you've pointed out, I've supplied ammunition like this to the schools. Google power!)


You RULE, Jeremy!

If you two lived closer, I'd bake you a cake.


Heh. I drive places for cakes. People underestimate the power cake has over me.


But people under 18 do not have unfettered rights. For example, schools have the right to search a student's locker without a warrant... unless the student is 18.

It seems to me that the court ruling is wrong. If the school board does not have the authority to decide what books can go in the library then who does? Only the librarian? The courts? Must every book ever published be placed in every library? Librarians make decisions about what books will be placed in the library based on content all the time. Suppose that the school board decided that comic books should not be taking up valuable library space. Would that "abridge students' First Amendment rights"?

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