Forbidden books celebrated at fair at Old Dutch Church in Kingston – Daily Freeman


KINGSTON, NY – Banned books were brought to light at a fair in the Fellowship Hall of the Old Dutch Church on Saturday.

The event was organized in conjunction with the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of the Catskills in the City of Ulster, Kingston Library, Rough Draft Bar & Books, Half Moon Books and World’s End Comics. It featured charts of past and present forbidden books. They included tracks like JD Salinger’s “Catcher in the Rye”, Margaret Atwood’s “Handmaid’s Tale” and even Dr. Seuss’ “The Lorax”.

Kingston Library director Margie Menard said she came to the fair with Addie Smock, the library’s assistant director, because libraries are all about the “freedom to read and provide information and to ensure that banned and/or disputed books are still accessible to our community.”

Christopher Livecchi, co-owner of World’s End Comics on Wall Street, happily accepted an invitation to participate. He said graphic novels were widely censored in the United States

“These are stories that are often very deeply human stories, that get into really complicated stuff, so here we are,” Livecchi said.

Christine Powers, bookstore manager at Rough Draft Bar & Books, said Rough Draft had no questions about supporting the event as she stood at a table with banned-for-sale books that had labels noting notable instances where they have been banned or challenged.

“We’re a big proponent of letting people read whatever they want,” Powers said.

Jessica DuPont of Half Moon Books on North Front Street also had a table full of banned or disputed books. “We support the free exchange of ideas,” she said.

“We are a church, we are Christians and God created us in freedom, and the freedom to read is one of the freedoms we want to protect,” said Reverend Ron Sweeney, pastor of Old Dutch Church. “We think that just because we don’t agree with everything we read doesn’t mean we should be able to read it. And that’s one of the ways we could change our minds, change our hearts, and change our lives.

Photos: Forbidden Book Fair at the Old Dutch Church in Kingston


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