Tim Sandefur reminds us all that it is Banned Book Week and the world and out country are still filled with people who would oppresse the rights of others to information, alternate opinions, or simply a good story.
Here's a list of the 100 most requently banned books over the previous century. Pick one up this week and read it. Better yet, when your done, share the book with someone else and ask that they too pass the book along. If you can't find a book in your neighborhood, because its been banned or other such nonesense, the University of Pennsylvania Library has a great on-line library of books along with the story of their banning. This is another great banned book resource.
Might I suggest starting with John Locke's Essay Concerning Human Understanding before conquering the ALA's Top 100 list.
I'll probably re-read To Kill a Mockingbird again as well Huxley's Brave New World. Both are longtime favorites of mine, but there's lots of other goodies on the list as well . . . everything from Mark Twain to Stephen King to John Steinbeck to Madonna. Plus a ton of Judy Bloom (who's Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing and Superfudge were two of my favorite childhood books). Heck, I like the Harry Potter movies and have always wanted to read the books. Maybe I'll start this week.
UPDATE:Went to Books A Million last night and bought some banned books, including the first two Harry Potter books. I started reading the Sorcerer's Stone on the train this morning. As someone said in my comments, its much better than the movie. It was actually an interesting experience reading it now, knowing what I know of its success and the great struggle out of poverty that accompanied J.K. Rowling's drafting of it. When I am done, my copy will be passed along.
I also purchased a few other banned books to distribute randomly. Today, I handed a women on my bus To Kill a Mockingbird. Tomorrow, I am giving away a copy of Catcher in the Rye. Friday I will give away a copy of Brave New World.