America’s Most Banned Books Author Elaine Hopkins Calls BS On Parents ‘Worrying’

More than 1,600 different books Public schools and libraries have been banned for the past school year, as parents and community members across the country continue to stir up hell over acts that address cultural identities, racism, homophobia and abuse.

Many banners in favor of the book insist that the material is simply not suitable for younger readers. But the authors say these concerns are just excuses — and they’re really about exclusion.

“They act like they’re worried about the kids,” he said, “but they’re not.” Ellen Hopkinsauthor crankAnd the tricksAnd the people kill people, and many other books that have been challenged. “By saying, ‘Books about LGBTQ content can’t exist,’ they’re not just saying these kids don’t count. They’re saying they shouldn’t exist.”

Hopkins is the most banned writer in the US, according to a new report from pen america.

The report was jointly released with Banned Books WeekAnd the which began on Sunday and is organized by groups dedicated to promoting freedom of expression in the United States

It provides insight into book bans across the country, and reveals that there were more than 2,500 bans in 140 school districts during the previous academic year, affecting 1,648 titles by 1,261 different authors. that Index in the report It also shows the locations of each book ban, along with who challenged the book. Texas banned most books, followed by Florida and then Pennsylvania. The report, released Monday, shows how bans have become prevalent, driving wedges into local communities.

In an interview with The Daily Beast, Hopkins She said she would like to have a constructive dialogue with parents and community members who hesitate about her books, but usually avoid conversation.

Hopkins’ writing career was inspired by her own life. She started writing her first book, crank, after watching her daughter, who was once the “perfect kid,” struggle. Written like a poem, the story details the downfall of a teenage girl and the choices she is forced to make between drug abuse, teenage parenting, prostitution, and homelessness.

“[My daughter] I went to church, she was an ordinary child. “It was all going for her,” Hopkins said. “I met a man and her life and dreams went away at the age of 18…So, if I could get a kid off that road, [be] happy.”

in tricksa novel about human trafficking, Hopkins took a similar approach.

“I worked with Vice Las Vegas,” she told The Daily Beast. “I was talking to kids on the streets of Las Vegas. They traffic kids in front of all those big and beautiful casinos.”

Hopkins said it is better to tackle problems than to ignore them and pretend they don’t exist, as her opponents are trying to do.

“To say these things wouldn’t happen if they didn’t read about them, I mean, I don’t even know where the logic is,” she said.

Hopkins helped raise her grandchildren and was inspired to write a number of novels based on her family’s experiences. She has expanded her work to include school performances where she shares stories with students in an educational setting.

“I am not there to harm the children. I am there to help them,” she said. “I am there to help them make better choices, better decisions. That is my intention in writing.”

Ashley Hope Perez, his book from the dark Banned in 24 US school districts, former high school English teacher and current professor of literature at The Ohio State University. More book signs, she said, should be willing to read the entire literature in order to understand the context.

“Let’s have a conversation about why the author made these choices,” she told The Daily Beast. “I’m just, like, amazed at the refusal to read. These people don’t read books, and even if they read passages from the book, they would fail a 10th grade English class. They would surely fail a world literature class because context matters. Which particular passage is part of all literature.

from the darka novel about New London school explosion Set in 1930s Texas, he incorporates some of Perez’s own experiences.

“with from the dark“I wrote this novel, in part, because I saw what silencing the painful history of societies does,” she said. “It’s crazy to me because we know that having access to literature that is an experience—young people may not have words for it—is helpful in being able to name this damage.”

Both Hopkins and Perez said they were charged with ulterior motives for harming children.

“I’m not there to hurt anyone,” Hopkins said. “I’m there to help these kids find their way to a better future. That’s my point. That’s it.”

According to the PEN list, Hopkins is the most banned author, with 43 bans. gay sex By Maya Cobabe, the second most banned author, is the most banned book. The warrants were pulled from 41 counties, according to the report. come next Not all boys are blue by George M. Johnson and Perez from the dark.

“The data underscores the rapidly increasing frequency with which entire categories of books—particularly those featuring champions of color, dealing with issues of race, or highlighting LGBTQ+ characters and themes—are being pulled from shelves in classrooms and school libraries,” she said.

“This censorship movement turns our public schools into political battlegrounds, drives fissures within communities, forces teachers and librarians out of their jobs, and quietly casts on the spirit of open research and intellectual freedom that underpins a burgeoning democracy,” PEN America Chief Executive Officer Susan Nossell said. after the report. “This goes far beyond organic expressions of concern.”

The Daily Beast previously reported that a new compliance rule has caused the Texas school district to withdraw dozens of books before the 2022-23 school year, including the Bible and the Amendment Anne Frank’s Diary. In August, a teacher in Oklahoma resigned after passing a law stating that teachers should not make white, heterosexual children feel uncomfortable. In May, a school in Ohio banned a historical novel because of “sex and evil.”

The restrictions come after far-right critics began campaigning against the classroom for critical race theory. The ban was not limited to literature, even mathematics textbooks were heavily criticized.

As parents and community members continue to wage a political war against school districts and libraries, Hopkins said the damage is ultimately to the children, who need to feel heard and understood.

Perez agreed that it is harmful for young people to have the resources available but may not be able to access them.

“Perhaps the most painful thing for me and other writers,” she said, “we write these books because we believe the stories we put on shelves for young people are important.” theyThey give them perspectives they wouldn’t have, they give them access to elements of our history they wouldn’t have, and they allow them to imagine the experiences of their classmates or people.”

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