This event presents the recent wave of censorship across the state of Missouri removing books and art in libraries. Legislation like SB 775 and the MO Secretary of State’s recent Proposed Rule to control library funding could undermine democracy and push us closer to fascism. This past year alone, attempts to ban books nationwide have gone up 450%, and this trend shows no sign of fading. Join librarian Joe Kohlburn as he engages with this controversy, talks about his experiences as Intellectual Freedom Committee Chair in 2022, and helps you figure out what you can do to protect the freedom to read! Audience members are invited to ask questions and learn about intellectual freedom, as well as see humorous examples of materials that state leaders deemed too scandalous for public consumption.
Joe Kohlburn is a librarian, art historian, and doctoral student in Information Science at University of Missouri. He is 2022 Chair of the Missouri Library Association’s Intellectual Freedom Committee. Joe has been a board member of Critical Mass for the Visual Arts since 2012, and is host of the 5 Questions Podcast.