Banning Books in Carleton Place — 1980 — Banned Books Week


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This week I wrote about Banned Books Week and how we are lucky in Canada not to have book issues like in the United States.

However in March of 1980, the Chairman of the Carleton Place Police force requested the Lanark County Board of education ban a law book used in our local high school. Presbyterian Minister Robert Hill in a letter to the board said the Grade 12 book was actually inappropriate text to be used in a high school law class. The book entitled: Law Law Law was written by four Toronto  civil rights lawyers and has been used as one of the texts in the high school law class for eight years previous.


Actual book shown to me by Dave Goodings who has a copy.


Jim McSpurren said the request that the book be banned surprised him. He said he could not understand as the book has been used for years, and now suddenly, someone wants it dropped from the course. The book was considered valuable information because it teaches about warrants, powers of police and so on. It does make some dumb statements, but he was sure his students were mature enough to realize that just because something is written between two book covers does not necessarily make it the truth, Education director Bob Cressman said he has read the book and agrees some statements are inaccurate, but it has some good things in it. Hill had taken his complaints to Ontario Premier Bill Davis, but was told to take his beefs to the Lanark Board of Education.

My friend Dave Goodings actually has a copy of the book and it was used in his 1974 high School law class. Hoping to get a picture of it soon.

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About lindaseccaspina

Before she laid her fingers to a keyboard, Linda was a fashion designer, and then owned the eclectic store Flash Cadilac and Savannah Devilles in Ottawa on Rideau Street from 1976-1996. She also did clothing for various media and worked on “You Can’t do that on Television”. After writing for years about things that she cared about or pissed her off on American media she finally found her calling. She is a weekly columnist for the Sherbrooke Record and documents history every single day and has over 6500 blogs about Lanark County and Ottawa and an enormous weekly readership. Linda has published six books and is in her 4th year as a town councillor for Carleton Place. She believes in community and promoting business owners because she believes she can, so she does.

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