Monday, September 5, 2011

Secret Locker Library

This is a fantastic idea for those students who won't let ridiculous policies stand in the way of intellectual freedom.  A recent article showcased the awesome work of a student (going by the name Nekochan) in a Catholic school who began running a banned books library out of her locker and the empty one next to it.  She felt that the books being banned from classrooms and the library was a bit ridiculous and so she started lending the titles on the banned books list to other students.
Nekochan wrote about the recent book ban: “I was absolutely appalled, because a huge number of the books were classics and others that are my favorites. One of my personal favorites, The Catcher in the Rye, was on the list, so I decided to bring it to school to see if I would really get in trouble. Well… I did but not too much. Then (surprise!) a boy in my English class asked if he could borrow the book because he heard it was very good AND it was banned! This happened a lot and my locker got to overflowing with banned books, so I decided to put the unoccupied locker next to me to a good use. I now have 62 books in that locker, about half of what was on the list.”
You can also see the information Neko provided on Yahoo! Answers to see if anyone else had done anything similar, and what sort of repercussions she might expect if found out.

It's hard not to smile and cheer (at least on the inside, if you're in a crowded room) for someone like this, with guts to stand up to a ridiculous policy to keep books out of the hands of teens who might actually learn from them.  These sorts of decisions are made in the name of protecting students, but protecting them from what?  Really, I've never figured it out.  Anyway, I hope this post is inspiring to some and a wake-up call for others.  Not all young people are just going to side by and let institutions get away with policing the books they read, so watch out, more Nekochan's are waiting in the shadows, looking for their chance to make a difference.

Thanks for listening!

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