The librarians of Citrus County, Florida wanted to buy a digital subscription to The New York Times, but the country commission will not let them do it because, as everyone knows, The New York Times is “fake news.” Yes, this is a true story. Here is a taste of Antonia Noori Farzan’s reporting at The Washington Post:
The librarians of Citrus County, Fla., had what seemed like a modest wish: A digital subscription to the New York Times. For about $2,700 annually, they reasoned, they could offer their roughly 70,000 patrons an easy way to research and catch up on the news.
But when their request came before the Citrus County commission last month, local officials literally laughed out loud. One commissioner, Scott Carnahan, declared the paper to be “fake news.”
“I agree with President Trump,” he said. “I will not be voting for this. I don’t want the New York Times in this county.”
In a move that is generating intense online backlash, all five members of the commission agreed to reject the library’s request. The discussion took place Oct. 24, the same day the Trump administration announced plans to cancel federal agencies’ subscriptions to the Times and The Washington Post. While there’s no apparent connection — the Citrus County meeting began several hours before the Wall Street Journal broke the news of the new edict — the controversy unfolding in central Florida highlights how politicians nationwide are parroting the president’s disparaging rhetoric about the media.
Read the rest here. I realize that Citrus County, Florida is a very conservative place, but what do these county commissioners have to fear?