Milwaukee’s Next Chapter Bookshop has taken fire from some people after announcing an appearance later this month by Karl Rove as he tours for Courage and Consequence: My Life as a Conservative in the Fight.
The Journal-Sentinel reports on owner Lanora Hurley responding by explaining the mission of a bookstore: “I just wanted to say to you that the whole point of an independent bookstore is to be a place that protects the First Amendment and allows the public to have access to whatever (legal) materials they would like. I do not agree with every author that comes to my store, nor do I feel it is my right to restrict what books my customers want to buy. I am hoping that my store can be the host to ideas from all over the spectrum.”
As the paper echoes: “If Rove offends you, don’t buy his book. Don’t go to Next Chapter that day. Wait for Rahm Emanuel’s book to come out. Or, in the spirit of inquiry and exchange of ideas that bookstores promote, why not respond more creatively? Pick up one of the many books by people on the other side of the fence from Rove, including our current president, who is not too shabby as a writer…. But don’t shun a local businesswoman just because she has the temerity to sell a few books by a polarizing figure you don’t like.”