In an interview with The Daily Beast, Bisbicos explained that he received the complaint from a parent via email. The parent thinks it is not placed in an “age appropriate” section of the library. The selector told the store that the book was still available but had been “temporarily removed” from circulation until it was determined where it would best be placed.
However, Kate Byroad, who is the library’s director, was not happy about it. Byroade also spoke to The Beast in an interview and said the book hasn’t even been vetted yet. Byroade explained that the book is part of the Pride Month exhibit. She went on to say that every librarian reads a book after a complaint is filed about it, but for Bisbicos to try to immediately pull the book off the shelves ended up being overkill and a disruption to the library’s internal process.
“It completely bypassed how you should go about things,” Byroade told the publication, adding that it was “the exact definition of censorship.”
Bisbicos told the Beast that the book was not “censored or banned,” but that he just wanted it to have a more “age-appropriate” place in the library. He again described the images in the book as “sexually provocative”. He then stated to the outlet that if the image had been found in a book about George Washington (yes, George Washington), he would have received an “identical response.”
Here’s the thing. Conservatives Love to see LGBTQ+ people as innately more sexual and inappropriate than cisgender, heterosexual people. That’s why conservatives don’t mind students knowing that their teachers are married, for example, as long as they’re in a clean current marriage. That’s why conservatives don’t mind putting babies in “wife-killer” pajamas—assuming the baby is a boy. Conservatives see nothing wrong with their own orientation because they see it as “normal” by default.
Book censorship is itself a form of violence. Depriving people of their ability to learn and communicate is violence. However, conservatives are also unleashing very literal violence on public libraries, pushing this dangerous anti-LGBTQ+ rhetoric. For example, now we have covered numerous instances of the Proud Boys (yes, the far-right hate group) invading book events for children and terrorizing families who just want to read. I would say the Republicans should be ashamed, but we know they won’t be.