Sometimes people see readers as escapists; unwilling to face the realities of here and now, much preferring the comfort of living through others (namely, book characters.)
I read because I fear ignorance.
Which white slave owner thought to themselves, “I’m off to enslave my fellow human beings.”? Which Nazi activist thought “We’re all human, but some of us deserve to live more than others.”? We don’t have to look far back in history to find the most atrocious, horrifying events that came to – and were allowed to – pass through malicious, detrimental, fatal ignorance.
And yes, I read because I’m unwilling to face the world. I’m unwilling to face a world that I’m not familiar with, full of people that could warp my beliefs because I simply didn’t know.
I read because I never want to be the person who didn’t understand.
“Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity” – Martin Luther King Jr