Conservatives absolutely love to get people riled up on behalf of parental rights. In today’s world, these hysterics can include being against vaccines (COVID-19 and otherwise), as has been the case for a small but loud population for a while, but it doesn’t end there. Republicans like Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis hide behind “parental rights” when it comes to essentially keeping LGBTQ+ teachers and students in the closet so parents don’t have to worry about their child being exposed to openly queer people. The same logic is used when states want to mandate schools must out trans or questioning youth to parents. It’s a nightmare, and it’s dangerous.
Parental rights are also a big rallying cry right now when it comes to books. As Daily Kos has continued to cover, Republicans have attacked books (mostly by LGBTQ+ writers and writers of color) by trying to ban critical race theory (CRT) from public schools. In addition to being ridiculous, it’s not ending there. Republicans have taken on the all-too-familiar anti-queer rhetoric of suggesting books are “inappropriate” or “obscene” and thus shouldn’t be allowed in public school classrooms or libraries. This has resulted in a number of folks calling for books to be banned—or even burned.
The latest example comes to us from Connecticut, according to the Journal Inquirer, where a group of people who identified themselves as mothers entered the Booth & Dimock Memorial Library, removed books from a Pride Month display in the children’s section, and brought them to the librarian. Did they want to check out these books? No. They wanted them to burn.
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According to the outlet, the women spoke to librarian Margaret Khan with their demands. Khan says she told the women they could file requests for the library to consider the books. This would include having to mention specific content they oppose in each book. According to Khan, the women spoke to her using hateful language.
According to LGBTQ Nation, the library hasn’t revealed the names of those who filed complaints. One patron allegedly identified themselves only as a “Christian taxpayer,” however.
John Elsesser, who serves as Town Manager, told the outlet that though police were not called in this instance, they would be called should this happen again.
Daily Kos has covered numerous instances of angry, hateful people trying to keep kids from reading. We’ve seen people up in arms about drag queen reading events as well as Pride Month activities and book displays. This is legitimately frightening and upsetting for everyone involved, from staff to kids to parents—unless, of course, you’re a member of the white supremacist far-right Proud Boys, in which case you’re likely to prance around the area like you own the place.
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