Boy Borrows Mature Manga, Parents Complain

And here we go again.

An Oregon man is shocked, yes, shocked and apalled that his 12 year old son was allowed to check out adult oriented manga at the Multnomah County Library.

"If you have an adult section, you should enforce it," Rezabek said. "He's 12 years old. They say right on the cover of all these books: 'mature, ages 18 plus.'"

The library responded to his concerns that all books are available to everyone and that it's the responsibility of the parents to monitor what their child is reading.

Rezabek says he may consult an attorney on the matter. As we all know, suing is the answer to everything.

More from KPTV by way of Anime News Network by way of my friend David.


Some adult manga is quite graphic, far beyond what you'd see in, for example "Playboy" or other adult magazines. We're talking stuff like rape of young girls, etc.

What do you think the library's responsibilities are, if any? Why is a store-owner not allowed to sell mature products, but libraries are allowing kids to borrow them?

Ratings on books and movies are not legally binding. Well, some states may have laws about movie ratings, but off the top of my head I don't know. Comparing manga to "Playboy" or other adult magazines, I think is unfair since it's drawn not photos.

I will say libraries don't do enough to explain to parents what the rules are and what their responiblities are.

"Comparing manga to "Playboy" or other adult magazines, I think is unfair since it's drawn not photos."

Some of the stuff that is in Manga and other "drawn" cartoons are way more explicit than anything found in Playboy or Penthouse. I might add that drawings can be outrageously exaggerated, if you catch my drift.

Gotta be careful when you buy that stuff. I only get the tame stuff for exactly this reason. The "mature 18+" should have been a clue to the librarian that bought it. In manga language "mature 18+" means giant dragon penises violating schoolgirls with gigantic eyeballs.

Christ, I hate that shit. All of it. Weird-ass pedophile bait. Everytime I see a kid reading any of it I want to snatch it from him, give him an X-Men comic and send him on his way.

Such ignorance of history! Don't you know that American superhero comics were the original pedophile bait?

But now, they are considered acceptable to middle-class white men, while teenagers prefer manga, so the latter is the new bogeyman.

Did you know that gratuitously killing off female characters in American superhero comics is so common, it has a name?

At least Lone Wolf and Cub is set during a violent era, so it makes sense his loved ones would be killed.

To say nothing of the total smashing of the few happy and normal relationships like the Dibnys and the Spiderman and MJ in mainline comics. I'm not sure who I want to be locked in a steel cage match more: Laura Bush, Joe Quesada, Dan Didio, or Harlen Ellison.

But either way, Web 2.0 allows the manga loving kid and the jaded comic book reader alternate versions of whatever you looking for if you know where to look.

"Electricity is really just organized lightning." - George Carlin

Not all 18+ manga falls into the "pedophile bait" (to use the commenter's term). Maybe he needs to expand his horizons and read a bit more broadly before making sweeping generalizations. As for the story, the solution is the simple one: where was the parent when the kid checked out the item?

That's called responsibility. Something that seems to be sorely lacking.

Odd, that complaints about manga and graphic novels are always about sex and nudity, but never about violence. A penis is offensive to one of the respondants, but Wolverine's razor-sharp talons (and the use therof) is perfectly acceptable for children.

I agree that it is the responsibility of the parent to monitor what the child is reading; it is also the responsibility of the parent, when adult material is found in the child's possession, to sit down with the child and discuss the material. Children are curious and their curiosity should be rewarded with information, guidelines, communication...actual parenting. If the parent wants to be certain that his/her child is not exposed to adult material, the parent should set the firm rule with the child...stay out of the adult section of the library.

While I do not personally agree with the content of all books, I think it is up to the entire community to decide whether or not their library could or should have this material. Some items are no-brainers: libraries are not going to offer the work of Jenna Jameson in their DVD collections. But other materials fall into greyer territories. It is between the library and attending community to decide on the finer lines, because the library is for everyone...not just children.

The over-the-top response by this parent -- which sadly has become the de rigueur, Pavlovian, censorship-centered, and often financially-motivated "outraged" response of so many in this country (remember "Nipplegate" at the Super Bowl, anyone?) -- does not help this child or any other. At most, this child has been humiliated over the issue and will probably be more secretive and sly with regard to future checkouts or purchases.

A commenter wrote "Odd, that complaints about manga and graphic novels are always about sex and nudity, but never about violence." but someone else wrote: "In manga language 'mature 18+' means giant dragon penises violating schoolgirls with gigantic eyeballs. " That sure sounds like violence to me. Even the original article says, "The books include animated pictures of young women and girls in bondage, being raped and abused." It sounds like folks ARE concerned about the violence. This isn't just about people getting upset about sex.

Yes, I think it's the sexual violence in manga that makes it so offensive to many Americans. Most American adults wouldn't be caught dead reading some of the stuff that appears in some of the 18+ manga. Japan is a different culture, and sea-monster tentacles violating school girls is apparently OK as long as no pubic hair is shown.

I think Librarians should be held responsible for stocking stuff that is clearly not appropriate for children and then letting kids check it out. Librarians should know their stuff.

yeah, I'm sure the library was full of hentai. genius. manga can be rated-18 for a number of reasons including language, violence, and sexuality. there's no reason to assume a school girl was raped by an octopus. as long as the selection of material was supported by the library's collection development policy, the library should be fine.

As a younger person in the "geek," subculture I had people willing to help my underage self buy stories with graphic themes, pictures, and content (violence, sex, and combinations thereof) in fan fiction and pin-ups. Manga is just this generation's outlet for the forbidden. At least it helps my dyslexic niece read. (The kanji characters are easier on her so she ends up bilingual to boot.) I admit that I'm likely in training now for my MLS in part because I discovered that I could find all sort of interesting stuff in the library if you knew where to look.

So, yes, here's the usual:

1) We're not the cops and we aren't the parents.

2) We ban this and where does it stop?

3) I know people would buy the stuff for a minor and then keep an eye on the kid if he wanted to discuss what he read. Depending on the circumstances, I might even be one of them. For a 12 year old, 6 times out of 7 I'll give a "come back in 2-4 years and talk to me," notice. You'd hope his parent would be that person, but that's never a guarantee.

4) Not all adult manga is mindless porn bought by unsuspecting librarians. There's likely some literary worth here.

"Electricity is really just organized lightning." - George Carlin

Oh, No, this Hentai/Manga is Just like the old superhero comic books. @@ You know, the ones with octopuses raping women, and that sort of thing.....

Once these ideas get into a kid's head, you can't get them out. You had just better hope they don't dwell on this kind of stuff.

Do they just allow minors to take out r-rated dvd's?
I know in the public library I worked on, just like at the supermarket with alcochol a message popped up when you scanned it saying to check the age of the user.

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