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Challenging, Banning, and Censoring The Freedom to Read

Legal Aspects


Supreme Court Case

Miller v. California, 413 US 15 (1973)

Established the test used to determine whether expressive materials cross the line into unprotected obscenity.

US District Court

PEN America v. Escambia County School District

Federal court case filed 17 May 2023 asking for books to be returned to school libraries in Florida's Escambia County School District.

State Laws

IN Law HB 1447 (effective 1 July 2023)

The bill urges schools to have an online list of the books on their shelves, allowing parents or community members to look them over and express their concerns. Books can be removed from the shelves if they’re deemed “obscene” or “harmful to minors.” The bill also gives local prosecutors the ability to bring charges against librarians or media specialists who might have a book deemed “obscene” on their shelves.

IL Law “ HB2789 (effective j January 2024)

“prohibiting the practice of banning books is to adopt the American Library Association's Library Bill of Rights that indicates materials should not be proscribed or removed because of partisan or doctrinal disapproval” 

TX HB 900 signed by Gov. Greg Abbott 12 June 2023

"HB 900 defines sexually explicit and sexually relevant material and requires library material vendors (any entity that sells library materials to a public school in Texas) to assign sexually explicit and sexually relevant ratings to any material the vendor determines meet the law's definitions."

Blocked by federal judge Allen D Albright.