But as reporter Meg Butterworth found, in one rural county in Washington the battle has gone beyond the books themselves. It could end up eliminating an entire library system.
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That’s because, after a year of tense board meetings, misinformation and demands to censor half-a-dozen titles, one local resident collected enough signatures to put a petition to close the library on Columbia County’s November ballot.
For this episode of Crosscut Reports, host Sara Bernard talks with Butterworth about what’s been happening in Columbia County, how closely it tracks with the national debate and what all this says about political polarization, censorship, the role of librarians and the meaning of a public library.