Florida: Can Schools Wipe Out Racism by Banning Books about It?

Diane Ravitch's blog

The Orlando Sentinel editorial board published a statement denouncing the current zeal for censorship in schools and school libraries. (To learn about the history of book banning and censorship in American schools, read my book THe Language Police). The rising tide of book banning threatens freedom of thought, academic freedom, and common sense.

Banning and burning books is nothing new. What’s new are the targets: Books about race and racism.

In Tennessee, zealots want to get rid of a picture book by Ruby Bridges, who became the first Black student at an all-white New Orleans school when she was just 6 years old.

Among the supposedly objectionable material in “Ruby Bridges Goes to School: My True Story” are photos that show white people holding signs that say, “We want segragation (sic),” and, “We don’t want to Integrate,” as well as another showing a young boy with a sign that…

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