Letters to the Editor are Important!

Advocacy, General Interest

Letters to the Editor are more important than you might think. They show support for the librarians and teachers involved, they highlight the quality of the book and intellectual freedom, and most importantly they publicly show an individual’s willingness to stand up for the First Amendment and the right to read.

In Lebanon, Kentucky, an English teacher included the best selling and award winning young adult novel, Looking for Alaska, by John Green. This book also happens the be the number one most challenged book in 2015. John, also a YouTuber, podcaster, and a person who does not cast movies, created a great video about his inclusion on the ALA list.

And while I think it’s incredibly awesome that John Green responded, I find it extremely phenomenal and heroic when community members respond. In front of their neighbors and friends, they sign their name to a letter expressing support for a piece of art that others have called “filth” and “porn”.

It’s also a great source of information. During the multiple book challenge in West Bend, Wisconsin, hundreds of articles and letters to the editors were saved and archived. This documentation offered outstanding primary sources for research. https://muse.jhu.edu/article/552023 http://www.michaelzimmer.org/2014/08/12/the-west-bend-challenges/

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Thank you to the Marion County Public Library for their help with accessing the local paper.

Please take the time. Share your thoughts, insights, and support. And save the publications. This information helps us study and learn so we can stop censorship.

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