There is an epidemic in our country, and it is growing stronger daily. Someone is not
being allowed to live her/ his life to the fullest degree because of this disease. Its traits can be
found in every city, town, and state across the country. No, this epidemic is not AIDS or cancer:
however, if left alone, its long term effects can be just as detrimental. The name of the epidemic is
censorship, and last year, the number of censorship cases in the school systems across America
reached a new high because certain interest groups feel they know what is best for students to
think. The censorship of academic materials must be banned because no group has the right to
impose its ideas of politics, morality, or religion to a group of students who have the right to
inform themselves on all subjects and to exercise their own sense of reason.
'The injustices of censorship were in full force at least as early as 1644, the year English
writer John Milton wrote his famous Areopagitica to defend freedom of the press' (Tax 154).
Last year alone, there were more instances of school censorship than any year since 1982 (Clark
171). The most challenged books deal with the following subjects: sex, feminism, teen
rebelliousness, AIDS, homosexuality, the negative African-American experience, and non-Christian viewpoints. The overwhelming majority of book objections come from parents in the
community who have no authority on what should be censored and what should not be censored
(Clark 54). Deanna Duby, director of educational policy for the American Way, expects
censorship to be on the rise in the future. (Solin 98).
The fundamental purpose of schools is to allow everyone to have the opportunity to learn,
Thus, whenever a school system denies a student materials because of censorship,