This week is Banned Books Week. It is a week to celebrate the freedom to read.
You see, some people are not okay with the fact that others have differing opinions. They are not okay with the idea that maybe, just maybe, their ideas are WRONG and that someone else may come along and present the truth.
Many people have knee-jerk reactions to distasteful materials and immediately want to use government force to get their way.
John Stuart Mill said,
“…The peculiar evil of silencing the expression of an opinion is, that it is robbing the human race- posterity as well as the existing generation- those who dissent from the opinion, still more than those who hold it. If the opinion is right, they are deprived of the opportunity of exchanging error for truth: if wrong, they lose, what is almost as great a benefit, the clearer perception and livelier impression of truth, produced by its collision with error.”
Exactly, Mr. Mill. Banning books (or censoring, in general) harms everyone, even those who are supposedly being protected.
So, people, take this week to read some classic banned books. I hope you too share the level of happiness I receive when I read satanic, sex-crazed, sacrilegious, distasteful, and racist literature.