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Thursday, April 18, 2024
Letter: Shouldn’t libraries have a balanced collection?
Letter to the editor. File

Dear editor:

I’m feeling a bit of whiplash.  On Feb. 22, a half-page opinion piece headlined “Censorship and what we are allowed to read” was published.

OK, I confess I gave it a skim. Then a letter was published on Feb. 29, “Opinion piece espoused right wing talking points.” That got me curious about this FAIR organization.

Then bam! In your March 21 edition we learn the chief librarian, the writer of the original piece for Freedom to Read Week, was suspended then fired? What just happened?

I’ve since gone back to carefully read the first column by Cathy Simpson. Perhaps she was a little heavy in reference to FAIR. It could be her point was lost.

Did she need to lose her position over it? Given a follow-up column for clarification? Was it explosive? It has since become a flashpoint, for sure.

Since elementary school, I’ve been an avid reader. I get it from my father.

My middle child has followed and is also a keen reader, with my youngest joining the bandwagon. I have never joined a book club, because the thought of being told what to read does not appeal to me.

Just because I read what I want, doesn’t mean that I live in a bubble, or am close-minded.  It only means that around each decade I explore a different genre at my own leisure.

I tend to stay away from bestsellers, because the more people tell me to read a particular book or author the more it doesn’t appeal to me. Sound familiar? Public libraries should have a balanced collection without restrictions. Isn’t that the mandate of public libraries?

I sense a few groups will be up in arms over this.  Some feminists might question if Simpson would have lost her job if she was a man, alt-right peoples will bring their hot tub and occupy the road. Well, you get the idea.

I don’t doubt the keyboard warriors will be divided.  ust like the pickleball outdoor court, the noise bylaw, horse and carriage business in Old Town or the rainbow crosswalk near the community centre.

How ironic that the chief librarian was fired over writing about Freedom to Read Week.

Lara Davidson

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