Alabama Public Library Service (APLS) board member and Alabama GOP chair John Wahl intends to introduce a proposal to address statewide concern with sexually explicit library books for minors.
For months, residents in counties and municipalities across the state have raised concerns over their library’s content.
Recently, Gov. Kay Ivey sent an open letter to APLS director Nancy Pack, demanding answers for the state of Alabama libraries. She asked that her questions be answered before the next APLS board meeting on September 13.
Questions still loom about Pack's role in the attempted and successful cancellations of conservative events at various state libraries, such as the Mom's for Liberty event in Madison featuring Kirk Cameron and Riley Gaines.
Wahl's motion, which he intends to file at the next meeting, would have the APLS develop a list of books that may contain sexually inappropriate content for display purposes in children’s library sections. The proposal would also create a framework where parents could submit material they felt was unsuitable for children, and the findings would be shared with local libraries across the State.
"I believe it is critical that we address the concerns of parents across the State of Alabama and provide our local libraries with some guidance on what books may contain inappropriate content for children,” Wahl said. “I am a strong advocate of the First Amendment and do not believe in banning books, but this is not a question about banning anything. The question here is should taxpayer funds be used to purchase books with explicit sexual content and other inappropriate material that are readily accessible to our children.”
He continued, “We have rating systems for movies, television shows, and even video games which help protect our youth from unsuitable materials. Libraries should be a safe spot for children, and a place where parents do not have to worry about what they may be exposed to in the children's section. As a board member of the APLS, it’s important for me that we represent the values of the people of Alabama, and protect our children from sexually inappropriate content and woke policies. The people of Alabama have put their trust in our state government, and I hope that my fellow board members share my concerns. I strongly believe that we should let children be children again, and stop pushing a social agenda on them.”
Wahl was pivotal in recently asking the Attorney General's Office for clarification on the authority the APLS has over local libraries and possible inappropriate content in their youth sections.
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