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Sunday, May 19, 2024 - 10:40 PM


First Published in 1994


a standing room only crowd at library board
A standing-room-only crowd showed up Monday to attend the monthly meeting of the Greenville County Library Board.

A standing-room only crowd attended the monthly meeting of the Greenville County Library Board this past Monday afternoon to see what would happen to certain materials deemed sexually objectionable that were accessible to minors.

Earlier in the month, the library board's materials committee put forward two motions dealing with these materials. The first motion called for the removal of the following materials from the Juvenile Collection:

  1. “Explicit descriptions or depictions of sexual acts including vaginal, anal, oral masturbation, incest or pedophilia
  2. Descriptions or depictions that affirm gender transition ideology.”

The second motion called for the removal of the following materials from the Young Adult Collection:

  1. “Graphic depictions or descriptions of rape or pedophilia.
  2. “Graphic sexual depictions or descriptions.”
  3. “Materials that affirm gender transition ideology as a primary or significant subject.”

One board member asserted that passing these motions could possibly result in litigation based on First Amendment grounds. An attempt to table the motions failed. After several minutes of discussion it was decided to remove the clauses dealing with gender identity. The amended motions were then approved by the board.

The sexually explicit materials will be moved, while the proposed policy concerning the disposition of the gender identity materials will be sent back to the materials committee for possible further review.

The crowd, which numbered at least 200, seemed to be fairly evenly divided between supporters of traditional family values and supporters of the so-called 'trans' movement. So-called 'transsexuals' are people who claim a sexual identity different from their gender at birth. Biological males claim that they are really females, and vice-versa.

Mark 9 42

Stand for Libraries
Both sides of the issue were well represented at Monday's Library Board meeting.

One notable example of this is the former athlete Bruce Jenner, who now calls himself Caitlyn Jenner and who identifies as a woman, despite being born a biological male.

Long before the commencement of the noon meeting, a line had begun to form containing people who wanted to sign up to speak to the board concerning this issue. Several of the people who signed up to speak did not get the opportunity to do so because of time limitations.

In order to be fair to all, two sign-up sheets were provided, one for those speakers in favor of the board's decision and the other for those who wanted these objectionable materials to remain in place.

Only after the motions were approved were public comments accepted from the audience. One speaker erroneously claimed that “relocation is censorship.” He also said that some parents want to tell other parents what their children can cannot see. This is not accurate since those books would still be easily attainable from the adult section by the parents who approve of their children viewing these materials.

Actually, leaving these books in the juvenile section would make them easily viewable to children whose parents might not think them appropriate. The speaker further accused the board members of attacking the First Amendment.

More than one speaker accused the board members of hating people who are gay. Board chairman Allan Hill rebuked one speaker for making this assertion.

“Nothing can be further from the truth,” said Hill, who said he has received several letters accusing him of hatred. He also denied accusations that he had harassed staff on visits to library branches.

The second speaker, who supported the proposal to move the books said, “It's inappropriate to expose our children to gay, lesbian and transgender books at our local library,” adding, “Leave our children alone, and take your liberal agenda home with you.”