I’ll let you in on a big fat, barely concealed secret: Leftists ban books like they’re the reincarnation of Mao Zedong. And while they’re at their Communist-style book-banning, they hunt down and pillory conservatives for their non-existent book banning. Fortunately for conservatives, burning at the stake is illegal. Unfortunately for conservatives, the BLM riots, protests at Supreme Court Justices' homes, and open borders have exposed how little respect leftists have for laws.
In the past, society suffered through the paranoid hyperventilating of leftists about alleged conservative book-banning only once a year during the American Library Association’s annual conspiracy week, ominously called Banned Books Week. But now their wailing and gnashing of teeth disturb the peace pretty much every day. What causes their eruptions? Are conservatives storming and looting libraries and bookstores and roasting novels on an open fire?
Mmm, not quite.
Conservative parents are objecting to public school teachers exposing students to material that includes language and images so sexually graphic and obscene that it couldn’t be read or shown on network news or read over schools’ P.A. systems.
Parents are objecting to the accessibility of picture books that espouse controversial ideas on controversial topics to young kids in the children’s departments of libraries.
Parents are objecting to teachers exposing students to arguable material that espouses distorted revisionist views of American history and ideas derived from Critical Race Theory (CRT) while refusing to spend equal or any time exposing students to criticism of these views and ideas.
Parents are not asking online or brick-and-mortar booksellers to cease selling such books.
Parents are not asking lawmakers to ban the publication of obscene books for tweens and teens, or of controversial picture books, or of books espousing revisionist views of American history, or books that espouse CRT-derived ideas about alleged systemic racism, white privilege, and oppression.
When conservatives oppose public schools teaching arguable leftist ideas about oppression derived from CRT, leftists respond with disinformation—also known as lies—falsely claiming that these conservatives oppose teaching about slavery. Public schools have been teaching about slavery, Jim Crow laws, and the Civil Rights Movement for over a half-century. The inconvenient truth for leftists is that no parents, no governors, and no states are calling for the abolition of teaching about slavery or racism.
When conservatives oppose public schools teaching arguable ideas derived from gender theory and so-called “comprehensive” sex ed, leftists screech that Republicans oppose teaching “essential” information to children. Leftists want this purportedly “essential” information—which many rightly see as ideological grooming—to start no later than kindergarten.
So, who has decided that minors must learn about “gender theory,” anal sex, and porn use? And who decided its public school teachers who should be the purveyors of this value-laden, “essential” information?
If challenged on their presumptuous claims about what children need to know and when leftists reply that topics are covered in “age-appropriate” ways. Curiously, they never provide the criteria used to determine “age-appropriateness” or identify who invented those criteria.
In all their sound and fury, there’s something leftists don’t share with the public. They never share why they aren’t accused of book banning, so I will.
They’re never accused of banning books because most publishing companies are controlled by leftists who won’t publish books that espouse conservative views on, for example, homosexuality or “trans”-cultism. That is book banning.
Leftists are never accused of book banning because libraries are run by leftists who wouldn’t purchase conservative books on sexuality or “trans”-cultism if any were published. That’s book banning.
Here's a too-little-known fact about libraries. They use something called Collection Development Policies to justify their secret book-banning. These are criteria used to determine what resources libraries with limited funds should purchase. Surprise, surprise, these criteria are constructed by leftists in such a way as to exclude conservative books on topics like racism, sexuality, and “gender” from being purchased.
The Collection Development Policy for Chicago Public Schools (CPS), which was revised in 2021 to “take into consideration matters of equity as they apply to collection development,” explains that it is “guided by principles set forth in … [Illinois State Board of Education’s] Culturally Responsive Teaching and Leading Standards for all Illinois Educators.”
Those are the highly controversial standards created by a handpicked group of leftists, approved by a leftist rules committee in Springfield, and adopted by the leftist Illinois State Board of Education. And now CPS libraries use those standards to determine which resources to purchase—and which not to purchase. That is de facto book banning.
The Culturally Responsive Teaching and Leading Standards (heavy emphasis on “leading”) address the mitigation of “racist, sexist, homophobic, Eurocentric behavior or unearned privilege,” “the effects of power and privilege,” the intentional “embrace” of “student identities,” the integration of “the wide spectrum and fluidity of identities in the curriculum,” and counternarratives “to dominant culture.”
Does anyone believe a conservative resource could make it through a filter that includes those criteria?
Further, the Collection Development Policy requires resources to be positively reviewed by “reputable sources and professional organizations … including but not limited to Booklist [run by far-left American Library Association], School Library Journal, and Kirkus Reviews.” These “reputable sources” are run by—you guessed it—leftists.
The CPS Collection Development Policy includes the recommendation that materials that “encourage … biases” be “weeded out.” Anyone who has been paying attention to the rhetoric of leftists knows that conservative moral principles are labeled “biases.”
Time and space allow for discussion of only one more CPS de facto book-banning criterion, but it’s a doozy:
Members of the school community involved in the collection development process, including students, will employ … criteria … to select resources, unfettered by their personal, political, social, or religious views. Students and educators served by the school library should have access to resources and services free of constraints resulting from personal, partisan, or doctrinal disapproval. School librarians will resist efforts by individuals or groups to define what is appropriate for all students or teachers to read, view, hear, or access.
The irony is that the Collection Development Policy is fettered with partisan political and social views. School librarians, teachers, review journals, publishers, the creators of the “culturally responsive teaching and leading standards,” and the American Library Association are the individuals and groups who are constraining and deciding what is appropriate for students to read. They just hide their partisan fettering, constraining, deciding, censoring, and banning behind Banned Books Week displays where no one can see.