Everyday books are still being challenged and removed from shelves, libraries, classrooms and reading lists across the USA. Challenged and removed books mean that somewhere a child can no longer access that book. Challenged books nearly always include content about marginalized groups. Removal of these books remove a child's sense of inclusion and belonging.
This is a direct attack on our intellectual freedoms, and yes, kids have those rights too.
See all of the books listed on ALA's top 100 lists currently available in the CSULB Library:
Facing Challenges (how can we respond?):
Wait! What about removing books (especially older books) that we now know to be racist, sexist and/or homophobic? We don't want these books around but we don't want to be book banners! We just need to be VERY careful in our reasons for removing a book. Is our reasoning personal biases? Is there a general belief that this book is harmful? Watch the slippery slope. Also consider books as historical research, representing thinking at a time in history, for older children's learning, vs. younger children.
Beyond banning: What other barriers exist for access:
Laurie Halse Anderson - Speak
Jason Reynolds - American Boys, Stamped
Pam Muñoz Ryan/Elizabeth Acevedo - Esperanza Rising/The Poet X
Benjamin Alire Sáenz - Aristotle and Dante
Melinda Lo -Last Night at the Telegraph Club
Gene Luen Yang - American Born Chinese
Jerry Craft - New Kid
Francisco Jiménez - The Circuit
Nicola Yoon -The Sun is Also a Star
Nic Stone- Dear Martin