A Chicago Sun-Times editorial questions whether or not Orland Park Public Libraries should block and filter pornographic websites from library computers. Unfortunately, filters and blocks consequentially end up blocking legitimate science and research sites that have nothing to do with porn. The American Library Association argues that censorship cripples the very purpose of a library’s existence which is to “provide information and enlightenment.” The ACLU of Illinois has long fought against censorship in libraries:
Back in 2006, the ACLU brought a lawsuit on behalf of: a college student who was prevented from doing research for a paper on youth tobacco use; an artist who couldn’t access art galleries and artwork; a political group whose publication “Women and Guns” was blocked, and a man who wanted to update his MySpace page. A Missouri library recently was found to be blocking the “Encyclopedia of Death and Dying” and a Wikipedia page on “Wicca.” A year ago, the Naperville Public Library removed filters because they blocked content they shouldn’t have.