The Cartoonist Cooperative Condemns Scholastic’s Support for Censoring Diverse Authors and Stories

This statement was originally posted on October 23rd, 2023, and has been backdated on our journal as part of our collective archiving efforts. Below is the text as it was published on that date.

The Cartoonist Cooperative and its 700+ members condemn Scholastic for self-censoring diverse books from their 120,000 book fairs across the United States. Scholastic is a billion dollar company and one of the biggest book publishers in the world, yet its leadership pretends it has no resources to fight this draconian bigotry. By pre-emptively surrendering to the vocal right-wing minority of book banners, Scholastic has suppressed books by queer, disabled, Black and brown authors and shown who they truly support.

Books by diverse authors—our stories, our existence—aren’t and should never be “optional”. As a publisher, Scholastic absolutely has the ability to reinforce and support this.

Instead, it allows schools to opt-out of receiving diverse books and offers up censorship on a platter, furthering the suppressive racist agenda of these lawmakers and board members. This cowardly decision further emboldens the tiny and loud bigoted detractors and does a tremendous disservice to children’s growth and education.

The Cartoonist Cooperative demands that Scholastic stop facilitating the censorship and segregation of its diverse books and use its vast resources to protect its authors, artists, and children’s freedom to read. 

If you’re a cartoonist and want to join us in fighting for a fairer industry that supports its authors and uplifts diverse voices, consider becoming a member of the Cartoonist Cooperative! Or become a volunteer to support the work of our members! Together we can take on powerful corporations and change the industry for the better.