Teens have found Not in Front of the Children educational and empowering. Here are some e-mails received by the author:
Hello! My name is Denise Glasenapp and I’m 15. I’m involved in debate, and our current resolution is "Limiting the freedom of expression of adults is justified by society’s interest in protecting children." After spending a good 3 weeks searching for information against the resolution, I found information from many philosophers, both supporting the right to free expression and also supporting censorship. However, none really addressed censorship in the name of "protecting children." After reading an article on your book at salon.com, I realized that you were exactly what I had been looking for! I found your book at the bookstore, and although I have never paid $30 for a book in my life, I felt this one was a necessity. It’s been a wonderful help for my debate preparation, but also a help to me.
Before I read your book, I didn’t think very deeply into my debate resolutions or even into the issues facing society today. I only thought superficially, but now I realize that these issues, especially those concerning free expression, are REAL. I always believed that someone would take care of protecting our rights, and that it wasn’t very much to worry about. Now I really realize that if we don’t fight to protect the rights we now take for granted, it isn’t guaranteed that we will keep them.
You’re truly an inspiration to me, and I’m so proud of the way that you’ve fought for what you believe in, and not just left the job to someone else. Please know that you’ve forever changed the way I look at the world and the issues facing the world.
Thank you so much,
As a 15 year old i find your book (not in front of children) fascinating, and appreciate so you in the know discussing how censorship is horrible, and specifically against young people. … If you ever need someone to give a speech on the effect of censorship from the point of view of a teenager, i would be more than welcomed, and deeply honored.
Thanks to Dan and Denise for permission to publish their letters.