The media tends to report on politics as if it were sports. It’s A or B, a winner or a loser, a zero sum game. But now, the media covers politics like reality TV. It’s not even about winners and losers anymore. It’s about the spectacle, the outrage, the drama.
Some public challenges in 2019 focused on books that were read aloud to minors. The issues were LGBTQIA and race. But some challenges raise new questions.
The Blaine Amendment, ensconced in some 37 state constitutions, prohibits the expenditure of public funds for private religious education. But the United States Supreme Court seems poised to strike it down.
The framers of the Constitution did not anticipate texting your boyfriend to encourage his suicide, or the sending of strobe GIFs that precipitate epileptic seizures. Sometimes, free speech is a crime.
…if bad actors or provocateurs can turn a peaceful protest into a violent altercation, and fix the blame on protest organizers, free speech now faces an impossible burden.
I’d like to offer an approach I’ll call the continuum of safety, offered from the perspective of the patron, the person who uses the library but is not a member of the staff. My goal is to establish a framework for the supervision of public space, in keeping with the values of the profession.
Some of the lessons we learn in our professional career are painful. And to all of you have made a decision you regret, I say: Welcome to the club. The best response is to learn from those decisions. The takeaway here: our policies articulate our values. Let’s not throw them away just because someone yells at us. Let’s live them.
EBSCO, and the Colorado Library Consortium, have been sued by parents seeking to remove EBSCO research databases from Colorado schoolrooms, based on spurious claims that the databases access “pornography.” The problem here isn’t pornography in library databases. The problem is a group of people who believe their prudery should be public policy.
“Often the most challenged books are the stories that need to be heard the most,” muses the bannedbooksweek.org website. Here are reflections from Rev. Emily Gage on banned books week, the silencing of stories and why what we share and how we listen matters.
For Banned Books Week, Jamie LaRue, Director of the Office for Intellectual Freedom, writes to banned author, Jay Asher with gratitude for his courage, compassion, and persistence.