HomeCivil RightsBook about book bans banned by school board

Book about book bans banned by school board

Published on

The latest chapter in controversial book bans, the Indian River County School Board has banned “Ban This Book” by Alan Gratz. This decision comes amid growing concerns from parents associated with the far right group Moms for Liberty. One of the groups co-founders, Tiffany Justice was once a member of that same board.

“Ban This Book,” a children’s novel published in 2017, tells the story of a young girl, Amy Anne Ollinger, who discovers her favorite book has been removed from the school library. In response, she creates a secret library of banned books, igniting a debate on censorship and the right to read.

The recent ban followed a challenge by Jennifer Pippin, a local parent and chair of the Indian River chapter of Moms for Liberty. Pippin argued that the book promotes rebellion against school authorities. Despite the school district’s review committee initially deciding to keep the book, the school board voted 3-2 in favor of its removal.

Board members Jacqueline Rosario and Gene Posca, both supported by Moms for Liberty, voted for the ban. Neither Rosario nor Posca responded to requests for comments. In a statement to the Tallahassee Democrat, Gratz highlighted the irony of banning a book about book bans, suggesting it reveals the board’s discomfort with the book’s message.

According to the Washington Post, Gratz said he wrote the book in 2017 to call attention to challenges against books, an issue he said was “relatively unseen” at the time. He recalled religious objections to the Harry Potter series’ portrayal of witchcraft and challenges to the Junie B. Jones books because their titular 5-year-old character had poor grammar.

“Ban This Book” was meant to push back on that phenomenon, Gratz said.

- Advertisement -

“Nobody has the right to tell you what you can and can’t read, except your parents, and they shouldn’t have the ability to tell other parents what books their kids can and can’t read,” he told The Post. “And that’s the core message.”

Recent data from the American Library Association shows a significant increase in book bans across the U.S., with a 92% rise in censorship cases in public libraries in 2023. This trend aligns with the actions of groups like Moms for Liberty, which have been active in advocating for the removal of books they deem inappropriate.

As the debate over book censorship continues, this latest incident underscores the ongoing struggle over educational content and the balance between parental concerns and the freedom to read.

Upcoming Events

Upcoming Events

More like this

Randy Fine shuns longtime volunteer to back Moms for Liberty candidate

In the latest attempt of several years of failing to "take over" the Brevard...

Florida school board, sued for book bans, wants to depose 7-year-old while refusing to be deposed themselves

The Escambia County School Board, embroiled in a lawsuit with a local teacher and...

Florida Ed Chief Puts British Novel on American Pride Reading List – Title has the word “Pride” in it

Tallahassee, Fla.– Pride and Prejudice is to American Pride as Fish is to a...