To Publish Or Not To Publish?

books-in-the-trash

Milo Yiannopoulos has been making news lately. For those not yet familiar with the name, he’s a young writer currently working as an editor for Breitbart News. He’s best known for his alt-right perspective and his inflammatory writing which has earned him a fan base on the far Right and the derision and scorn from Moderates and Progressives.

Most recently, Milo was invited and then dis-invited to speak at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) due to attention to resurfaced videos that appears to show Yiannopoulos defending consensual sex between adult men and underage boys. Yiannopoulos himself engaged in sexual acts with a priest as a young man and jokes about the experience in a positive light, saying it helped him to become more skilled at performing oral sex.

In addition, Yiannopoulos lost a book deal he’d signed with Simon and Schuster. The publishing house announced it was halting the publication of  the book, “Dangerous” written by Yiannopoulos.

Using Yiannopoulos as a prime example, I could comment about the changing zeitgeist of American morality or the current state of the Conservative movement but those discussions are already occurring (almost ad nauseum) all across the news outlets and social media. I’d rather focus on the decision made by Simon and Schuster to stop publication of the book.

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Book Banning: The Joy of Censorship

You can burn a book, but you can't kill an idea

You can burn a book, but you can’t kill an idea

There are certain groups of people who seem to love banning books and censoring thoughts and language. Among the most notorious are conservative Christians and Nazis. (Although we could throw in Muslims as well, to be fair). Interestingly, while conservative Christians aggressively try to ban or censor anything they find that is objectionable to the Christian faith, they have no problem at all with defending freedom of speech when it comes to insulting Islam.

Over the years, many classic books as well as many benign children’s books have fallen under strict religious scrutiny and have drawn the ire of religious zealots who feel it is their duty in life to protect the rest of humanity from itself. Take a look at a sample of books that have been banned over the years:

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