ALA: You Have the FREEDOM TO READ

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ala-logoI know there are books in my local library that will offend me. Its the librarians who will stop me from taking away the opportunity for someone else to read that book. Your local library, your kids’ school library, should reflect not just the values of the community, but the values of other communities too.

As most librarians will tell you: A good public library is an equal opportunity offender.

The American Library Association, along with the Association of American Publishers, bluntly expresses their belief in your Freedom to Read.

We Will Not Be Invisible in Libraries

In addition, the ALA keeps track of challenged books and promotes Banned Book Week. It reminds us that our ability to read whatever we want is only as good as our vigilance. LGBT books are among the most challenged books. Some people will not stop trying to hide our existence by outright asking school libraries to discard books that mention us. Or, they slyly persuade administrators to put books about us behind the desk where a kid has to ask an adult for permission to read. That book could be, say, Annie on my Mind or Heather Has Two Mommies.

Nearly two hundred years ago playwright Heinrich Heine wrote, “Dort, wo man Bücher verbrennt, verbrennt man am Ende auch Menschen”: “Where they burn books, they will also ultimately burn people.”

You have the freedom to read. Exercise that freedom and ask your local library to add books you want to read to their catalogs. It starts with getting that library card, right?

Thoughtful and Congenial are welcome visitors. Disrespect and Spite will be shown the door.