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Today begins the celebration of the freedom to read called Banned Books Week. The annual event is sponsored by the American Library Association and many other organizations of writers, publishers and booksellers.  I am always glad that my local library displays Banned Books Week posters, and features a pile of banned books.

Every year too, I take the time to write about it, in part because of its intrinsic importance, but also because those behind efforts to remove targeted books from school and public libraries are often part of the Religious Right. There are lots of press reports Banned Books Week related activities around the country now that we are underway, (see, for example, here, here, here and here) so I won't add to my essay, Banning and Burning Books in America, except to say that you can watch Bill Moyers, among others, discuss his support at the Banned Books Week's Virtual Read Out You Tube channel.

“Some of the most inspiring and mind-opening words ever written are threatened with removal because they offended a self-deputized vigilante. -- Bill Moyers"

Originally posted to Frederick Clarkson on Sun Sep 30, 2012 at 12:33 PM PDT.

Also republished by Progressive Friends of the Library Newsletter and Street Prophets .

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