Open Letter to NLB
Rainbow Parents SG is a support group formed by LGBTQ fathers and mothers. Our children are being lovingly raised in blended families and families with single or same-sex parents. We believe that everyone should be treated equally and hope that our families will not be discriminated against simply because we are a minority.
We do not agree with National Library Board’s recent withdrawal of and intent to destroy two books – “And Tango Makes Three” and “The Wild Swan Express: A Story About Adoption”.
Our families do not fit into the conventional mould of 1 father, 1 mother and 2.1 children. These books exist to educate children about the diversity of life on our planet. NLB’s act sends an extremely negative message to all children in uncommon family structures that nothing apart from the prescribed model is acceptable.
We are appalled an established and esteemed library like NLB would choose to remove and destroy books because of complaints from a select few. The best libraries carry many controversial books and it is the parents’ responsibility to provide guidance and encourage children to read with a critical mind. For parents who want to control everything their children read, they will need to accompany their children when browsing books, instead of depriving other families of the diverse reading experience the library has to offer. There are parents who want their children to understand diversity in families, and we are disappointed by NLB’s rather extreme removal and destruction of the books as if they contained life threatening material when both books are based on real life stories of adoption.
As an institution committed to the preservation of knowledge and texts, we hope NLB will consider donating or selling the withdrawn books so that these books that have apparently offended some would be cherished and appreciated by children whose parents value diversity. We believe our request aligns with NLB’s literacy programme and reading initiatives.
Rainbow Parents SG
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