It would seem that there are wavering opinions on what is suitable for young adults to read and whether their reading habits should be censored. I have to wonder, though, why it is okay to take these choices from young adults. Why do “adults” think they have the authority to decide which novels are appropriate for someone to read, considering that reading is an activity often done for entertainment? What entertains one young adult might be boring to another. I understand that there are arguments to be had in terms of religious schools, but in terms of public schools why are some books “banned”? If it is labelled (another problem in itself, but for now let us allow it) “young adult” then why are we taking the choice away from young adults to read it? My biggest problem with this is that it means we do not trust young adults to make appropriate choices for themselves. The problem is that this is one part of what being a young adult is about: learning to make your own decisions—and mistakes for that matter. A “banned” book only brings allure to young adults. It makes it a secret that they want to uncover. There is another option, though, one where we actually trust that a young adult can decide what it is they want to read, and when something makes them uncomfortable or does not entertain them they can choose to not read it anymore.
Another problem that keeps reappearing is the idea that young adults are taking longer to become adults. How can we expect these young adults to make the transition into adulthood if we cannot trust them with something as simple as choosing to read what they want? How can a young adult make any life changing decisions if people are constantly telling them what not to do from lack of trust? It is impossible to shield children from the bad in this world, but would we not rather have them exposed to these situations on the lines of a page rather than in real life? A young adult who was never spoken to about drugs could learn the dangers from one of the “dark” young adult books, and maybe (though this may be too optimistic) if they have read about them then they know what decision it is they are going to make if they are exposed to them. When it comes down to it I say we let people read what they want, and we trust young adults to be exactly that, young adults.