Sheltering kids does no good

I WAS shocked and disappointed to find out that the National Library Board pulled some children's books off its shelves because they were not "pro-family" ("NLB pulls 3 kids' books off its shelves"; yesterday).

It is unfortunate that the NLB is attempting to shield children from different viewpoints regarding sexual orientation.

Some may claim that children should be protected from "unclean values", but this is causing them to grow up in a sheltered environment.

This is not ideal if we want them to grow up as well-informed young citizens who can contribute differing views based on individual opinions.

Such debate is extremely valuable as it contributes towards Singapore's progress as a country.

Also, by removing children's books that showcase various sexual orientations, we are subconsciously telling children that homosexuality is wrong and shameful.

By ingraining such an idea in them, there is the possibility that bullying cases against gays and lesbians in our society will increase.

This undermines our efforts to build a more inclusive society that values and cares for everyone.

If the more conservative segment of our population is concerned about imparting "proper family values" to children, then the NLB could consider setting up a separate section for books such as And Tango Makes Three and The White Swan Express: A Story About Adoption (above).

A librarian could be situated nearby to clarify any doubts or misconceptions that the children may have regarding these books.

Eden Chua (Miss)

This article was first published on July 11, 2014.
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