Watch: CFOIC’s Sunshine Week panel on book banning

For Sunshine Week 2023, the Colorado Freedom of Information Coalition hosted an insightful discussion about recent attempts to remove or relocate books in public libraries and school districts in Colorado and around the country.

Rachael Johnson, Colorado-based attorney for the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, moderated the March 16 conversation. Rachael is representing the Crested Butte News in its appeal of a district court ruling that lets Gunnison County residents remain anonymous if they wish to have library books banned or relocated.

Book banning panel
From left: Krista Kafer, R. Alan Brooks, Jamie LaRue

The panelists:

Jamie LaRue, executive director of the Garfield County Library District and former director of the Douglas County libraries, where he dealt with more than 250 attempts to remove or restrict access to library materials. Jamie also was executive director of the American Library Association’s Office for Intellectual Freedom and the Freedom to Read Foundation and will soon publish “On Censorship: A Public Librarian Examines Cancel Culture in the USA.”

R. Alan Brooks, Regis University professor, author of the “The Burning Metronome” and “Anguish Garden” graphic novels, and creator of the award-winning weekly comic for The Colorado Sun, “What’d I Miss?” Alan was threatened on social media after announcing he was writing a graphic novel that was an allegory for leaving white supremacist movements.

Krista Kafer, Sunday opinion columnist for The Denver Post. Krista has written about the Gunnison County library case and is working on a magazine article on the topic.

Thank you to our event sponsors: The Colorado Sun, The Denver Post, Colorado Press Association, Rockford Gray and Colorado Society of Professional Journalists – Colorado Pro Chapter.

The panel begins at 33:56 in the YouTube video below.

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