Letter: Library stands against racism

To the Editor:

The Keizer Community Library acknowledges the pain and suffering caused by the deadline impacts of institutional and systemic racism in our communities. As a culture, and as individuals, we lose something of ourselves when injustice happens to any one of us.

As a community library we work to bring people together, to explore ideas, to learn and grow; and, in the process, earn the trust of our patrons. Libraries hold dear the First Amendment and the right of intellectual freedom. To those ends, we support the right to peaceably assemble, organize and protest for change. Many of the changes in our country have taken place because brave people have stood tall against oppression. We stand in solidarity with their voices and their efforts and we applaud individuals, organizations and leaders who are working for change.

We recognize the trauma, anger and frustration that yet another tragedy creates for all of us, in particular the Black community, indigenous peoples and other communities of color We believe the people should enjoy the privilege of being safe on their own streets and in their own home. And, we believe diverse communities are stronger when everyone feels secure and valued.

We are all diminished when we are silent in the face of violence. To be silent is to be complicit. The Keizer Community Library commits to standing up against racism and oppression. We also believe everyone in our community is willing to do the same.

Paula Guiles


(The writer is the president of the Board of Directors of the Keizer Community Library.)