We need better books. (You probably do, too.)

Due to the ongoing/never-ending state of the world and my recent foray into #kidsbookstagram, I’ve been taking a MUCH closer look at the collection of books I have amassed for my children. In that looking, and to my shame, I have noticed something.⁣

The majority of our collection gets a FAILING grade on diversity and inclusion.⁣

I could blame this on the fact that 95% of the books we own are second hand. Furthermore, 90% have come from thrift stores like Value Village and Talize. In those instances, you pretty much get what you get. But, for the other 5% I purchased second-hand online, the same cannot be said.⁣

What it truly boils down to is this, however:⁣

I come to this realization in a position of privilege.⁣

As a white person, I’ve never had to sit down and ponder if there were enough books in our collection that represent us.⁣

I’ve never had to purposefully purchase or borrow books that represent us.⁣

White people hold this position of power.⁣

We are already in every book of nearly every type — to the point of over-saturation.⁣

People of differing colour, beliefs, abilities, sex, gender, sexual orientations – are not.⁣

All of this were things I already knew. But, did knowing it change or effect my children’s book collection? Nope.⁣

‘Cause as a white person, these are all taken for granted luxuries of our hegemonic identity.⁣

My beliefs in a socially justice world may be strong, and I have been strongly educated as such (thanks, @douglascollege and @capilanou) but I still have so so SO much more work to do — both on myself, and in the raising of my children. ⁣Part of this is reexamining the books we own, the books were read, and the conversations that come from these books.⁣

I humbly accept this moment of learning, and am committed to making a change.

Thanks, @nwplibrary, in helping me take a first step forward today.⁣


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