May 11 • 2M

How Perverse is the GOP’s Book Banning Crusade?

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Author, agitator and activist Jim Hightower spreads the good word of true populism, under the simple notion that "everybody does better, when everybody does better."
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Tiptoeing around the democratic process, Indiana’s Republican legislature has become the latest of that ilk to slap its local school librarians with an idiotic book ban.

Snuck into law behind closed doors, the partisan Hoosier law requires librarians to pull books that the learned lawmakers consider “harmful to minors.” Just to juice up the ignorance and arrogance of their ban, the law criminalizes failure to comply by punishing librarians with up to two-and-a-half years in prison and a $10,000 fine! What constitutes “harmful to minors”? Indiana’s priggish politicos declare nudity, sexual references, and “offensive content to community standards” to be violations.

Obviously then, books commanding that rape victims marry their rapists, as well as celebrating daughters who seduce their father to bear his children, plus endorsement of bestiality, copulation in church, women boiling their children for food – and so God awful much more – have to be ripped from the shelves and burned! Only all of this is enshrined in The Bible, which is urged on Indiana’s youngsters in Sunday Schools, conveniently placed in the bedstands of every chain hotel… and cited by pious lawmakers as their moral compass.

The so-called “Good Book” is replete with the gross and explicit sexual material that Republican book censors call “harmful.” Indeed a feisty civil libertarian organization named Freedom From Religion Foundation gives away book labels you can stick in Bibles, warning that “literal belief in this book may endanger your health and life.”

The books that right-wing autocrats want to ban are not pornographic, they just explore ideas that those politicians don’t like – ideas that young people are already grappling with. And, by the way, why not require these pious lawmakers to disclose what licentious material they’ve been reading – before they dictate what we can read?

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