Friday, October 3, 2014

Putting "The Hiding Place" in Hiding

The blog suggestion for today was to do a book review. But I do book reviews on my blog "Views From Hobbit Hole". You can go spend time over there reading lots of reviews if you want.

Go ahead. I'll wait.

So instead, I will talk about a controversy surrounding books that is recent news.

The other day it came up on Facebook that a school in California was banning a lot of books with Christian themes, Christian authors and Christian publishers.

Just focusing on Christian authors alone would leave a library bare.

But the big controversy was the book "The Hiding Place" by Corrie Ten Boom. I've reviewed it on my other blog and you can read that review here.

Go ahead. I'll wait.

The story reported is that this is one of the books on the remove from the shelves list.

If you want to read about it there are several news stories. I don't particularly want to recommend a site because I don't know how accurate the report is. You can just google "The Hiding Place book ban" and several sites will come up.

Go ahead. I'll wait.

If you did this you may have found a blog post by a self-proclaimed librarian who has never even heard of the book or the author yet decided to review it and claimed that Corrie Ten Boom was an evangelist trying to convert the Jews.

I am not making that up. Not only that, but Annoyed Librarian spelled "banned" "band". Like it was a rock group or something made of rubber.

I am not making that up either.

Furthermore she suggested that the only Holocaust history kids needed was "The Diary of Anne Frank".

Again, I did not make that up.

I love the Diary of Anne Frank and I think it should be required reading, but when do educators only want you to look at one source? Since when did it become acceptable to say "we have this viewpoint so we don't need any others". 

Can you tell I don't believe that Annoyed Librarian may very well be annoyed but is probably not a librarian. Unless you count having your own personal library being a librarian.

Anyway, true story or not, the idea that a balanced and fair education involves removing all books written by Christians or that have Christian viewpoints is like telling the story of the Holocaust without mentioning the Jews. Or the history of the Reformation without mentioning Martin Luther. Or like teaching the history of art without the Catholic church. Or ignoring that schools were started by Protestant groups. Or that the pilgrims were devoutly religious.

And if you take out "The Hiding Place" for being Christian, then there goes anything written by C.S. Lewis or J.R.R. Tolkein or Louisa May Alcott. Can you imagine taking "Little Women" off the bookshelves? How about the Martin Luther King speeches? The music of Handel or Mozart? Even science would be under attack since Gallileo was a religious man who saw science and religion as two sides of the same coin.

Eradicating Christians from history, literature, art, music, politics, science and philosophy would leave what?

A lot of unexplained history, literature, art, music, politics, science and philosophy.

But I guess this is acceptable to those who would allow children access to "Mein Kamf" but not to "The Hiding Place."

Can it get any stupider? 



Laura Brewer said...

It's wonderful to find an honest voice these days. Don't let the Annoyed Librarians out there get you down, Anna. You hit that nail on the head.

Angie's Angle said...

Oh "The Hiding Place" sounds really good. I never understood the whole you can read this but you can't read that talk. It bugs me. Shouldn't we have a choice what we read, what our children read? Great post!

Unknown said...

I'd not heard of the controversy, even though I live in California. Banning ANY book is just ignorant. I can understand age appropriateness as a guiding factor, but not subject appropriateness. And we all certainly need more than one viewpoint to choose from.

Thanks for bringing this to my attention. I'll certainly do some reading on the controversy -- and I may just check out this book, too!