Nolte: Library Journal Comes Out Against Books Guilty of ‘Whiteness’

3rd December 1967: The interior of the public records office on Chancery Lane, Holborn, London. (Photo by Powell/Express/Getty Images)
Powell/Express/Getty

The Library Journal, which advertises itself as the “most trusted and respected publication for the library community,” appears to be calling for the banning of books it considers guilty of “whiteness.”

What this really is of course is a soft launch towards censorship and book burning.

In a tweet published earlier this week from Library Journal’s verified account, the trade publication announced to its 202,000 followers that “Library collections continue to promote and proliferate whiteness with their very existence and the fact that they are physically taking up space in our libraries.”

The tweet links to a semi-incoherent piece written by librarian Sofia Leung on her personal blog, who complains at length about “library collections … written mostly by straight white men [that] are a physical manifestation of white men ideas taking up all the space in our library stacks.”

She continues:

If you look at any United States library’s collection, especially those in higher education institutions, most of the collections (books, journals, archival papers, other media, etc.) are written by white dudes writing about white ideas, white things, or ideas, people, and things they stole from POC and then claimed as white property.

Library collections continue to promote and proliferate whiteness with their very existence and the fact that they are physically taking up space in our libraries. They are paid for using money that was usually ill-gotten and at the cost of black and brown lives via the prison industrial complex, the spoils of war, etc. Libraries filled with mostly white collections indicates that we don’t care about what POC think, we don’t care to hear from POC themselves, we don’t consider POC to be scholars, we don’t think POC are as valuable, knowledgeable, or as important as white people.

Ms. Leung is entitled to her opinions, and while it’s disturbing that a librarian, someone in a position to influence minds, holds such opinions, as long as she is doing her job in a professional manner, she is entitled to believe whatever she wants.

The Library Journal promoting this surreal mix of nonsense and racial hate is, though, something altogether different.

What we have here is a trade publication that affects how public dollars are spent essentially arguing against books, opposing books, promoting the idea that a certain category of books are “physically taking up space in our libraries.”

In other words, these books must be removed to make room for “acceptable” books that contain “acceptable” ideas and opinions.

The category under fire here is “whiteness,” a deliberately vague and imprecise term, a word right out of George Orwell’s 1984 that manages to be whatever it needs to be to the woke fascists, censors, and book burners desperate to blacklist specific ideas, thoughts, and opinions.

The term “whiteness” is meant to conjure up the same feelings as the term “white supremacist,” but “whiteness” sounds more polite, more scholarly, and it allows the blacklisters and censors to associate every idea, thought, and opinion they want blacklisted as an act of white supremacism.

Obviously, this is an insidious manipulation of language meant to appeal to decent people because all decent people oppose white supremacism, want white supremacism rooted out of polite society.

But just look at how the free speech debate has shifted in an influential part of the library community.

No longer are organizations like the Library Journal talking about protecting books from the censorship of removal; no longer are they calling for additional voices, no longer are they advocating for the importance of the inclusion of books from all people from all walks of life. Quite the opposite. The debate has now shifted to the idea of removing voices, removing ideas, removing people who hail from a certain walk of life because their “whiteness” is “physically taking up space in our libraries.”

In other words, a certain school of thought, a specific well of ideas is now a burden to our libraries and must be removed, disappeared, made unavailable to a public that must not be exposed to a certain school of thought.

This actually is Fahrenheit 451 come to life. Like all totalitarians, the book burning government in Ray Bradbury’s classic cautionary tale is not driven by bad intentions… Oh, no, no, no… Bradbury’s book burners are motivated by the noblest of intentions: to protect its citizens from any ideas, thoughts, or points of view that might offend or make them uncomfortable. The book burners are the good guys. The people love their book burners.

What’s more, in Bradbury’s prescient story, society has been numbed and made compliant with legalized drugs, reality TV, gadgets, social media, and the overall pursuit of pleasure. The population is pampered and sheltered, so inoculated from stress and adversity that this has morphed into a venomous intolerance that opposes any idea or thought that challenges their beliefs or world-view, that upsets their gilded bubbles.

Any of this starting to sound familiar?

This is exactly what is happening today, happening at the hands of social media companies blacklisting ideas for our own good, happening in a news media that deliberately removes precise terms like “illegal immigrant” from the lexicon, and now…

A major library publication is arguing that certain ideas are taking up too much space in our libraries.

In a sane country, in a sane culture, in a tolerant and open America, there is room for all ideas in our public libraries, and to argue against that, as the Library Journal is now, is as un-American as it gets.

If you have not yet read Fahrenheit 451 or 1984, you are woefully unprepared for what’s coming, for the future the far-left and their media allies hope to build for us.

Both novels were written, not by fanboys titillated over the idea of Dystopia, but by learned men who believed in human freedom, in intellectual pursuit, who saw the future, and who penned the warning signs decades ago.

If you can forgive their whiteness, Orwell and Bradbury gave us vital access to the left’s playbook.

Follow John Nolte on Twitter @NolteNC. Follow his Facebook Page here.

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