LIBRARIES: Inclusion is essential
Regarding the Community Library Network’s recent newsletter for Pride month, I am insanely proud of the library network for standing up to the loudest voices among us trying to preach that LGBTQ+ people do not deserve to monopolize even one weekly newsletter.
With newly elected board members recommending censoring content or hiding content from “innocent” eyes, it is more important than ever that the library filter these voices out and focus on their actual mission: inclusion.
The library is a public service that serves all citizens. That includes people of every race, gender, creed and sexual orientation.
Books are a gateway to empathy. By sharing unique voices and interacting with them with an open mind, we learn and grow as citizens. It allows us an opportunity to consider points of view that we may have shut ourselves off to.
Most importantly, raising diverse voices fosters a true sense of community. No one can feel like a respected member of the community if they are not allowed a seat at the table.
I would like to close by pointing to some figures that are of vital importance. The CLN sends a newsletter every week. Since March, they have sent 15 weekly newsletters highlighting things like gardening, relaxing, poetry and war fiction. Only one of these 15 newsletters was solely focused on LGBTQ+ authors and stories. Anyone suggesting that this is somehow monopolizing the community’s time and attention would be wise to check their math.