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From Vonnegut To Tucson, Books Are Sacred to Free People For Good Reasons

•, by Abby Zimet
 Not content with banning Hispanic studies and other dangerous reading from high schools, Arizona's superintendent of schools now wants to take the fight to universities, where teachers learned "this toxic thing" to begin with. In his honor, a 1973 letter from Kurt Vonnegut to a North Dakota school board chairman who banned, and then burned for good measure, all of the school's 32 copies of Slaughterhouse-Five after a teacher used it in his classroom. Vonnegut noted his books "do not argue in favor of wildness of any kind - they beg that people be kinder and more responsible than they often are." He then slammed the "rotten lesson you taught young people" and charged that with such "ignorant, harsh, un-American" exercising of one's authority over children, "people are entitled to call you bad citizens and fools. Even your own children are entitled to call you that."

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