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Stop Seattle's School District from Banning "Brave New World"

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A parent of a child in the Seattle school system is raising a ruckus over a book that's not unfamiliar to the Banned Book List: Aldous Huxley's Brave New World.

Her choice of book may be quite common, but the reason Lisa Sense-Wilson wants the book banned is quite new. Not because of its sexual content or because it challenges ideas about religion. But because Sense-Wilson says the book's depiction of "savages" upset her daughter.

They left having an image of Indian people as being criminals," said Sense-Wilson. "That we're to be feared. That we're scary. That we hold these ceremonies that are animalistic and brutal and violent."

She says the students in her daughter's class weren't able to grasp the fact that the "savages" in Huxley's book are actually portrayed as heroes in a way - strange outcasts from a "perfect" society that has many disturbing problems. But just because not every student might grasp Huxley's metaphors and complex ideas doesn't mean we should resort to censorship or keep them from ideas that will challenge their young minds.


Sense-Wilson already got the book removed from her daughter's school. Don't let censorship lead to the Seattle school district banning the book entirely. Banning a book is banning a book - it doesn't matter the reason. If we as progressives shout at conservatives when they seek to cover up, censor and ban what they don't like, we must trust a fair and open society where our children are well-read, critical thinkers and able to decide for themselves.

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