These days, I’ve been trying to be more grateful for the things that I have. I’m starting to keep a gratitude journal. Yes, yes, the emotion behind this post may be more appropriate around Thanksgiving time, but do we need a holiday to be thankful?
What am I grateful for today? : The freedom to read whatever I want. And I am sure that there is a still material that is censored but the amount of censorship in this country is negligible to that of others.
Just take a look at this banned book list. What if you never got the opportunity to read some of these books. Could you imagine never being able to see Holden’s internal struggles in The Catcher in the Rye or going on adventures with Ron, Harry and Hermione?
According to the article, we may have never met Katniss either. We can probably say that J Law’s career would have been quite different.
I didn’t intend for this post to be any sort of “position paper”, “editorial piece” or instigate a debate over when and where censorship should be allowed. But, I did want to emphasize that we often our freedom to write and read for granted. As writers (and readers), we come to realize how it’s not even our own writing, but it’s the writing of others that motivates us, shapes us and encourages us to keep writing. I, myself, have been inspired by other authors and we all know that writers are notorious for “stealing” ideas and techniques from other writers.
So, on this Sunday afternoon, I encourage you to think about the source of your writing. Who are you inspired by? Would you still be able to be inspired by their work if there was rampant censorship? Would you work be allowed with censorship?
As writers, we need to accept and understand the world in order to write about it. But (especially in the case of censorship), sometimes the world needs to accept us as well. Be grateful for its acceptance!