ALA: Brainwashing Your Kids

originally posted at SHUSH

     The latest edition of American Libraries has a wrap around advertising promotional
materials for Banned Book Week (coming in Sept.). The theme seems to be the circus with banned books
placed in animal cages. There are a number of different items including posters for different age groups. This
is the one advertised
for children:

     On first blanche there is the obvious King and King issue. When I get into debates
about these materials I always hear (*always*) that "the parent bears the ultimate responsibility for their
children". So much for that. ALA is obviously promoting the book to kids whether parents are for it or not.

     On a second look the whole poster is amusing, especially with the recent
hullabaloo over the children's book on Cuba in the Florida schools. One of the big arguments supporting
the book has been whether its appropriate to get into the various political issues involving Castro and
his dictatorship in a child's book. And yet, here's ALA with a banned books poster directed at children and
even bracelets
for kids showing the covers of the banned books. None of these books are actually banned. Its just an excuse
for ALA to be wading knee-deep into what are very contentious and highly politicized issues and pushing
their own views onto kids.

     Nuts, every liberal one of them.

Comments

"...ALA is only promoting those books to the parents ..."

I realize Nellis is a braindead bottom feeder but for everyone else, the poster is for *children*, the bracelets are for *children*. ALA is not interested in what the parents think.

The links work okay for me, are you talking about the image? Cause that comes up too.

Ever stop to think that maybe the ALA is only promoting those books to the parents that don't mind teaching their children tolerance and respect for other people's basic humanity? That the posters aren't aimed at the reactionary, hate-monger lunatics who demand to control what you see because it offends them?

Let's take your apparent assumption one step further: since I have no need of feminine hygeine products, shouldn't the advertizing industry make an effort to see to it that I am not bombarded by such advertizing when I watch the boob tube, as well as that women aren't bombarded by useless advertizing for male products?

And in what way does your being exposed to promotions of materials you don't agree with create a requirement that you consume such materials? In the end the choice is still yours whether or not to expose yourself, or you child, to such materials.

You want to save the easily offended? Ban everything.

you gave is not loading here is a better one.

"Most library collections are created based on the tastes of the population it serves"

Oh, please library collections are based on what the collection development librarians want to buy. My last public library had 4 copies of Michael Moore's book and 12 copies of the 911 report. There were never any holds on the Moore Book and the 8 leased copies of the 911 report went back untouched. It was a white middle class area with a great deal of >65 y/o patrons. They just didn't care about that stuff but I had to have the latest James Patterson and Janet Evanovich. When I took over collection development I tried to order things patrons wanted and I got a lot more requests for John O'Neil's book about Kerry than for Clinton's My Life.

So please do you really believe most library collections are created based upon the tastes of the community. I ordered all of the patron's requests, but I also tried to strike a balance between all viewpoints. After all I didn't have to read them I just had to order them. I also learned early on that reviews in 'professional' journals are garbage. I was better off with the NYT and the local paper's reviews.

Whee no what ewe ment

Or you can't look here if you want a real world example.

It's necessary for parents to shield their children from everything, at least since Fred Rogers died. The world is not made of nerf and Precious Moments figurines.

True but since libraries are taxpayer funded and since they promote their resources directly to children on a regular basis they are obliged to make things as nerfy as possibly where kids are concerned.

And what's sexual about two gay men living together or raising children together? I'm talking about social life and family structure. Why do you keep thinking about gay sex? That's weird.

And most if not all parents would prefer their children to avoid that particular structure if at all possible.

You must be Fatwalker.

One for Blake's archives !!!. Outstanding stuff! I think we've finally arrived at the nexus of this issue.

Obviously you are another librarian that finds Savage offensive in spite of his public popularity. And yes, for many in our fraternity, including yourself, he is too far in to psychosis for consideration hence his poor numbers in WorldCat in spite of being a best selling author. But you are honest Chuck, perfectly encapsulating my point. And shining the light of reality squarely in Fang's face.

May I use your comments here, perhaps on my web page, for future reference as an example of liberal "mind think" for biased collection development within our profession?

This entire journal entry is nothing more than a desperate attempt to gain some attention (for some is better than none) by my favorite ALA candidate. You go, Greg! Zap them lefties! Show 'em for what they are! Some publicity is better than none!

Case in point: I had serious reservations about buying those ridiculous Kevin Trudeau books "Natural Cures the FDA Doesn't Want you To Know About" or whatever. On the grounds that they were willful, knowing lies and that Trudeau had been investigated by the FCC for circumventing the laws governing "fact" vs. "opinion" on tv ads. I didn't seem unreasonable to me that someone could think that taking coneflower and bloodroot would cure their bone marrow cancer and wind up dead because Kevin is a hell of a salesman.Ultimately I decided that people have to make their own health decisions. I still want to hit that guy with a chair.

I beg to disagree.

What I have stated, quite clearly and consistently, is that CDP's are tools used by some to preclude the selection of books based on personal bias. A reality of which you still struggle with. This has been on my site for nearly 5 years now.

...As much as I love librarians I am neither foolish nor naive enough to accept that their collection development selections are free from personal bias. I know too many. And as collection development librarians understand the methods in which most patrons find books, biased (emphasis mine) collection development serves as the perfect tool (emphasis mine) to censor.

It's necessary for parents to shield their children from everything, at least since Fred Rogers died. The world is not made of nerf and Precious Moments figurines.And what's sexual about two gay men living together or raising children together? I'm talking about social life and family structure. Why do you keep thinking about gay sex? That's weird.

It may also be because Savage's book is hateful trash that gives most people a rash when they touch it.Savage said former president Jimmy Carter "is like Hitler." He also said it about Wolf Blitzer and Bernard King (conservative news hosts) and George Soros who, no matter what you think of his politics, survived the Communists and the Nazis in Hungary.So we can see that Savage is both NOT crazy and a load of laughs. Mmm hmm.So, while I did buy the steaming bag of crap that is his "book", I can understand why any librarian of any ideological stripe would draw the line at the humanitarian who wrote: "Human rights ... think people who want to rape your son."Might that one particular author be sliiiiiiiiightly beyond partisan politics and too far in to psychosis for consideration?
   

An adult does not equal a child, or child an adult, . . .

Oh, yes they do. In one very important distinction you just don't seem to get. Both are human beings, first, last, and always, and before anything else they might be in the privacy of their lives. Children are not stupid just because they are young.

There are no "banned" books, . . .

Tomeboy, this is a clear and present hypocrisy. Your position has consistently been that there is no such thing as selection, that every book turned away from a collection is censored. If that is the case, then every book that failed a selection process is a banned book.

Get your dogma straight and stop trying to bullshit the rational minded.

Oh, and another point for those of you who are weak on civil liberties: Banned Book Week isn't about banned books alone, it is also about those that have been challenged. Funny thing, it seems to me that a work called Vamos A Cuba has recently had the dubious pleasure of both categories until the reactionary hate-mongers were orded to put it back on the shelves.

A child's exposure to the world depends mostly on how much effort a parent is willing to invest in shielding them from certain things.

So its necessary now to shield children from the library? Simply because parents don't want to expose their kids to sexual issues at a young age doesn't make them bigots.

They may have something to do with each other in the case of wildly popular titles but the deeper you look, and it doesn't take long, they less they have in common.

"Wildly" popular in the eyes of collection librarian? Like the "wildly" popular Michael Moore, Molly Ivins, and Al Franken? You'd think a "wild" name like Savage, whose book The Enemy Within equaled Moore's Stupid White Men on the USA bestsellers at #12, would qualify here. The truth is that it is held in less than half of Moore's tome.

Wild indeed.

Fine. Let's put it this way. What's wrong with kids reading a book about gay people? And what's wrong with the ALA promoting that book?And in spite of your feeling that the ALA oozing filth into the minds of our youth it's still the parents who have the final say on what their kids read. Which do you think is a more powerful presence in a child's life: the ALA selling bracelets that no one buys or the parent that ostensibly is driving them to and from the library? Are you SLIGHTLY overestimating the influence of ALA? They don't have much to do with my life and I'm a librarian.A child's exposure to the world depends mostly on how much effort a parent is willing to invest in shielding them from certain things.I'll bet we could find parents that object to children reading about evolution. Should the ALA refuse to promote books on biology and astronomy?How many wingnut constituencies do we have to babysit the feelings of? I'm not going to pull any books on geology or petrochemistry because the drum-circle, homeschooled, bio-diesel, canvas tote bag carrying earth shoe wearers hate the oil companies. Anti-gay bigots get the same treatment. Want to have your feelings and opinions validated? Stay home and talk into a mirror.

It might be, but that is my experience.

I too ordered books by my 'idiots' and if patrons requested them I ordered them to arrive more quickly rather than in my weekly order.

One would hope that all librarians ordered the stuff that people wanted no matter how dopey we might think it is. Then again I think Michael Moore and Rush Limbaugh are big fat windbags so I can order from both columns and think they are crap.

My experience has been the opposite. I have worked in a SCORTCHINGLY liberal city that had balanced collections.At my current library I am in charge of adult non-fiction. I am also a fire-breathing dragon of a leftist Democrat atheist. I consider it an act of patriotism for me to buy books by Ann Coulter, Billy Graham, Sean Hannity because it's my job. I personally regard the three people I listed as, at best, idiots. But that's not for me to say nor should it affect my purchasing. I base my decisions on what my patrons want.Your assumption that this doesn't happen based on a small sample may be as flawed as my assumption that it does.

Eye'll reestaht mie powint.Library collections are created for different needs and by different forces than book sales. They may have something to do with each other in the case of wildly popular titles but the deeper you look, and it doesn't take long, they less they have in common.

There are no banned books in the US.

This is why the average American thinks the ALA is full of crap, well at least the ones who know of the ALA, or those that know you need a MLS to be a librarian.

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