Thursday, September 04, 2008

Sarah Palin -- Book Burner?

Today's Anchorage Daily News looks into the stories that Sarah Palin, when mayor of Wasilla, threatened to fire the town librarian for refusing to ban books. Just in case you let your subscription lapse, here's the article.

The upshot: while Palin did approach the librarian more than once about banning books, nobody remembers that any particular books were discussed. And so far, the librarian ain't talkin'. Palin asked the librarian for her resignation as a test of her "loyalty."


The Wall Street Journal also covered this yesterday.

Among those Ms. Palin tried to dismiss was library director Mary Ellen Emmons. Within days of her election, Ms. Palin approached Ms. Emmons to ask whether she would resist efforts to censor books in the library's collection.

It was general inquiry; Ms. Palin didn't ask Ms. Emmons to remove any particular books, according to the Frontiersman. "I told her clearly, I will fight anyone who tries to dictate what books can go on the library shelves," Ms. Emmons told the paper at the time.

Ms. Palin later described her inquiry as "rhetorical" and a way to get to know the city employees.

Ms. Palin ultimately allowed Ms. Emmons to keep her post. Ms. Emmons, who has since left Wasilla, couldn't be reached for comment.

The WSJ writers may have been trying to debunk all the rumors that it was much worse, but seem a little dismissive in labeling it "general inquiry." Would you be willing to alter the library's accounts and give me a 10% kickback? I'm not asking you to do it; it's just a general inquiry.

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