A book ban seems like a thing of the past, and not something that would be occurring in 2022. America is thought to be moving forward and addressing more of the inequalities in the world, however, it seems the country has taken steps back. Recently, Texas State Representative, Matt Krause, labeled eight hundred books on a watch list; the majority of these books revolved around issues pertaining to racial and LQBTQ+ themes. Additionally, an Oklahoma senator filed a bill to ban books that reference “sexual perversion.” Lastly, in Tennessee, a school board banned a Pulitzer prize-winning memoir, Maus, that talked about the Holocaust.
Many of the books that are facing bans are depictions of horrible things that have happened in history, addressing events to teach and advocate for them to not happen again. Administrators and government officials claim these books are too violent for school children, however, there is no way to address these issues without the image of violence and horror.
Books such as To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee were banned from a Washington State school district. This book is primarily used in classrooms to teach about racism in the United States, yet, it was banned for its controversy on whether or not it portrays the main character as a white savior.
The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood is another novel that was banned in a Kansas school district. Since its ban it has been restored, however, the sexual violence and criticism it shines on religion is a controversial issue amongst many in deciding whether it is appropriate or not for students to read.
Another example of a recently banned book is The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison. This book was removed from Missouri School district libraries due to its visual depiction of sexual abuse and incest, while also highlighting the devastations of racism.
Currently, the presence of books in schools and libraries is being challenged at a record pace, one that we have not seen in years. While the issue of book bans has been a constant issue over the course of growth and development in the nation, its frequency and justification are what are prompting this topic to become such a widespread issue and a major topic of conversation.