December 15-31, 2005 Edition

Maryland School

Official Reconsiders

Ban on Teen Book

BALTIMORE, MD/12/9/05—Amid a flurry of protests of censorship from across the country, Carroll County’s school superintendent said yesterday that he is struggling with whether to keep a popular book for teens out of the district’s libraries or to return it to the bookshelves, it was reported in an article by Gina Davis in the Baltimore Sun December 9.

According to the Sun article, Superintendent Charles I. Ecker said yesterday that he will decide next week the fate of Carolyn Mackler’s The Earth, My Butt and Other Big Round Things. He also said he is “agonizing” over the decision and looking at the pros and cons of potential appeals. The book was removed from the schools based on sexual references and the use of profanity.

But, the New York-based National Coalition Against Censorship, the American Civil Liberties Union of Maryland, the Association of American Publishers, PEN American Center, the First Amendment Project and the American Booksellers’ Foundation for Free Expression all have urged the book’s return to school libraries.

The ACLU claims the ban of the books is a clear violation of the First Amendment. Read the full story in the Baltimore Sun. Or e-mail: