The Salem Witch Trial of 2012
So, the library in my town is being sued.
And I'm so angry, I'm seeing red.
For most of my childhood, the library in my town was a safe place. I spent nearly all of my summers there, reading in the cool shelves, away from my house, that in many ways, though full of love, was still somewhat toxic. I not only read every single Nancy Drew book there, but I also read many of the classics-- Jules Verne, Mark Twain, and also spent more hours than I can possibly count reading from The Red Fairy Book and Grimm's Fairy Tales.
In many ways, the Salem Public Library shaped who I am today. My love of reading was encouraged (even though I had a problem with getting books back on time... we won't talk about some of my fines, though they were ALWAYS paid) and I discovered worlds that I probably wouldn't have, had I been stuck at home.
When I moved back to Salem after my father passed away, the librarians still remembered who I was. When I moved back to Salem again
, after college, the librarians still remembered me.
So seeing what is happening feels like a punch to the gut. Though there's no rational reason for it, I feel betrayed.
Researching other religions is NOT criminal activity. Yes, you could make the argument that stupid teenagers might look it up and use it as an excuse
to go do stupid teenage stuff. I get that. And someone on my facebook friends list is calling this "the government taking away the rights of the town to make their own decisions." But you know what?
This is WRONG. We live in a nation where we have certain liberties. Included are freedom of speech and freedom of religion. When are these liberties removed? When they infringe upon someone else's speech and religion. Someone looking up Native American Spirituality is NOT infringing on someone else's right to their own speech or their own religion. Looking up paganism is NOT infringing on someone else's right to their own speech or their own religion.
Tomorrow morning I am going to cancel my library card. There's nothing I can do about supporting it via my tax dollars, but at least I can let them know they have lost my patronage.