Pink Has a Feisty Response to Florida Book Bans

Singer will give out thousands of banned or restricted books at Miami, Sunrise concerts this week
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 14, 2023 8:31 AM CST
On Tour in Florida, Pink Tackles Book Bans
Pink performs on Sept. 15 at Piedmont Park in Atlanta.   (Photo by Paul R. Giunta/Invision/AP)

Groups and individuals have said they're boycotting visits to Florida and refusing to hold events in the Sunshine State due to Gov. Ron DeSantis' new laws on gender-affirming care, abortion, gun ownership, and teaching race- and LGBTQ+-themed subjects in school, among others. Pink is taking a different tack: The 44-year-old singer will still bring her latest Trustfall Tour to the state, but with thousands of banned or challenged books in hand to give away to fans, reports People. On Monday, the PEN America nonprofit announced that at both her Tuesday concert in Miami and her Wednesday gig in Sunrise, Pink will give away 1,000 books that tackle subjects the governor is trying to avoid.

The four titles that Pink will hand out include The Family Book, by Todd Parr; The Hill We Climb, by poet Amanda Gorman; a book from the Girls Who Code series, founded by Reshma Saujani; and Beloved, by Toni Morrison. "Books have held a special joy for me from the time I was a child, and that's why I am unwilling to stand by and watch while books are banned by schools," the mom of two says in a statement. "It's especially hateful to see authorities take aim at books about race and racism and against LGBTQ authors and those of color." She added in an Instagram caption: "As a mom of two young readers, I can't imagine letting someone else decide what MY CHILDREN can and cannot read!"

In a Monday tweet, Pink, who announced her banned-book giveaway Monday on Instagram with Gorman and PEN America chief Suzanne Nossel, listed other books that have received pushback—including Catcher in the Rye, To Kill a Mockingbird, and A Wrinkle in Time—and noted, "[Let me know] which book is pornography." According to PEN America, Florida ranks first among all states in terms of the most banned books in schools and libraries, accounting for 40% of the nation's total. "I think it's important that people understand that the situation is not getting better. It only continues to worsen," Jon Friedman, director of PEN America's free expression and education programs, tells the Miami Herald, which notes that more than 1,400 books have been banned or restricted in nearly three dozen Florida districts. (More Pink stories.)

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