Books Are Powerful by Sydney Salter

I understand why people ban books. 

The way books make readers think, introduce new ideas, new ways of being, threatens people who think society needs to remain the way it is, or better yet, society should return to a romanticized idyllic time--one that historically never existed. 

I live in a fast-changing, once-rural town in a red state, and I've been watching my neighbors grow more and more fearful, something they signal with politically charged yard signs and a stunning array of flags, some with truly shocking meanings. 

I understand why my neighbors are afraid. The kids in my neighborhood have changed, accepting all sorts of diversity, representing all sorts of diversity, following the general trends in the country. And they're connected with the larger world in ways that simply cannot be controlled.

I have a Little Free Library in my yard. Adults rarely take books. I'm pretty sure that my neighbors spend lots of time online, many following conspiracy theories as shown by the flags they display. I know that spending too much time online makes them afraid. Reading a variety of books would make them more empathetic, more understanding. Probably more optimistic too. 

Kids take books every single day. 

I make sure the library is stocked with picture books, early readers, chapter books, middle grade, YA, nonfiction, genre books--and banned books. 

Reading is one tool to help us work our way out of the current climate of fear. I'm working hard to quietly create readers in my neighborhood. 

Readers don't ban books. 


  1. Yay for the Little Free Libraries! That's fascinating that kids visit yours.


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