We sometimes get calls from readers who ask that we banish certain writers from the editorial page because the caller doesn’t agree with them.
Disagreeing with a writer is one thing, but the notion that all opinions that fail to conform to an individual’s point of view should be squelched strikes us as troubling.
This is the same kind of thinking that occasionally compels some library patrons to ask that a book be permanently removed from the shelf because the patron doesn’t like the contents.
The LSU Libraries are offering patrons a fresh reminder of that sobering reality with an exhibit exploring the history of books that have been the subject of bans or attempted bans at libraries across the country.
The exhibit, which is free and open to the public, is available for viewing through Oct. 31 in Room 227 of LSU’s Middleton Library. Call (225) 578-2349 or (225) 578-5652 for more information.
From 2001 to 2009, American libraries handled 4,312 requests to remove books from collections.
Among the most-challenged books of 2010 were Aldous Huxley’s “Brave New World” and Stephanie Meyer’s popular “Twilight” series about a teen vampire.
The numbers show that attempts to ban books from library shelves are still the exception, not the rule.
We hope such attempts at censorship dwindle even more.
Free people should be able to access a wide diversity of ideas — even ones that their fellow citizens might not like.