The Right to Read in the Public Library

Having spent the last year as the recording secretary for a library board in Washington State, which regularly deals with challenges by the public to books in the library's collection, I read with interest the Opinion page article ``Some Words In Their Defense,'' Sept. 15.

I came to my current job from an academic environment where intellectual freedom was taken for granted. It had always been clear to me that, under the First Amendment freedom given by our Constitution, I had the right to hold personal opinions about any subject. I am only now realizing how important it is for all citizens to understand that, if someone decides to write down an opinion and this writing gets published, the community has a right to have access to these opinions.

American public libraries protect our freedom by making available to all the full range of ideas, issues, and information, however popular or unpopular. Janet Pizzarello, Portland, Ore.

Your letters are welcome. For publication they must be signed and include your address and telephone number. Only a selection can be published, and none acknowledged. Letters should be addressed to "Readers Write," and can be sent by Internet E-mail (200 word maximum) to OPED@RACHEL.CSPS.COM, by fax to 617-450-2317, or by mail to One Norway St., Boston, MA 02115.One Norway St., Boston, MA 02115.

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