So, what do I think?
I think they're both right.
And I think they're both wrong.
Every person ever born has the right to form their own opinions. It's part of being human, and it's part of the task we were given by God - to decide for ourselves what we think and what we believe. When the lady who wrote the article for The Wall Street Journal penned down her thoughts, she was expressing her beliefs. There is absolutely nothing wrong with that. In fact, I agree with many of her points. I applaud her for taking a stand that she knew would be unpopular, but she did it anyway because she truly, genuinely believes what she said, and that takes courage.
The people standing up to oppose her have the right to do that very thing. They have had different experiences from hers. Their perspectives are different. They should have an arena to share their ideas, thoughts, and beliefs. In this way, I feel that the people on both sides of the equation are right. They are sharing their gut feelings. They are sharing with the world what they hold to be true.
And I believe that both sides are wrong. It's unfortunate when people feel they need to become vitriolic to make their point, when mud is slung or names are called. When people feel they are being attacked, they stop listening and start building walls. You can't understand someone else's point of view if you're too busy defending your own.
So, what is to be done?
We all continue to make choices according to what we personally believe, and we allow others the same right. It's that simple. As we make those choices, we are a living example of what we believe, and as others see us, they know where we stand. If they like what they see, they'll gravitate toward wanting to learn more about why we feel the way we feel. The power of influence cannot be measured, and it's the real way in which minds are changed. No amount of arguing can do it. It comes quietly, as others have experiences of their own that shape their perceptions.
Now you're wondering which camp I'm personally in. I think you can guess, if you've been reading my blog longer than thirty-seven seconds.
I am not in favor of censorship. You can read my thoughts about it here. I believe that books with every level of content should be made available to those who want to read them, but I believe they should be properly advertised so the consumer knows what they are getting. It frustrates me to think I'm getting one thing and to end up with something else, and I think a lot of consumers feel that way. Those who want a clean read should be able to find them easily. Those readers who want grittier content should be able to find them easily. It all goes back to freedom of choice. I believe in freedom of choice, and I believe in freedom of speech. You can read about that here.
As for me, I'm in the clean reads camp. I have read books with darker content if I've felt the need to understand more about a certain theme or concept or historical event, because I want to be educated, but I prefer, as a general rule, to spend my time reading books without dark content. That is my personal choice. That is my personal stand. I state it outright and without apology. But if I have a friend who wants to make their personal stand that they like to read something else, I will respect that in them as being their choice, and I will not attack them for it, call them names, or sling mud at them. I would certainly hope that they would do me the same courtesy.
It does not make a person narrow-minded to seek out books without dark content. It does not make a person evil if they seek out books with dark content. Why do we think we should get to judge others and their choices? At the end of the day, we control ourselves and no one else, and if we are doing what we feel is right for us, then the rest doesn't matter.