Parent appeals to library to remove child's book

A mother who was shocked when an intruder with a handgun appeared in a bedtime story she was reading to her preschooler was scheduled to take her complaint Wednesday to her Library Board. This is believed to be the library's first such case in at least 25 years.
Eight parents and teachers who in late March lodged citizen requests that "Pinkerton, Behave," first published in 1979, be removed from the shelves or designated in some way to forewarn parents of its content.
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The Difference Re:Oh, for Chris' sake!

I don't agree with this women's complaint

However, its not and never has been a question of the easily offended. When the majority is offended it is not unreasonable to take some action.

Jumping to the extreme on either side is counterproductive.

Hell Must've Just Frozen over

Fang and Greg agreed on something, well, they almost agreed on somthing, that's probably the best we could hope for.

Re:Hell Must've Just Frozen over

Probably a good thing I left off the "its the anti-gun/anti-2nd ammendement community's fault" comment then.

Oh, for Chris' sake!

As I have so often said: There is nothing that cannot be found offensive by someone, somewhere.

Save the Easily Offended: Ban Everything!

Re:The Difference Re:Oh, for Chris' sake!

I dunno, Greg. It seems to me that a majority of web-using librarians (perhaps even a majority of the readers of this oh!-so-controversial site) are offended by a fair bit of what you say. Does that mean it's not unreasonable to take some action to silence you?
While I am (obviously, I hope) not serious, I do think you raise a question about having it both ways: if you're for censorship, how do you justify some of the more bombastic stances you take here?

Re:The Difference Re:Oh, for Chris' sake!

Interesting, maybe I'll change the poll on the home page each day, and the results of that poll will determine who looses access to LISNews? We can vote people off the site, it'll be like survivor, only much more boring.Nothing like "the tyranny of the majority" to give some perspective to things.

Re:The Difference Re:Oh, for Chris' sake!

I vote we send Blake to Colonial House so he can get away from reality TV for a while.

What? Re:The Difference Re:Oh, for Chris' sake!

I justify them because I believe them. If Blake wants me off he's free to say so. I invested my time and money in setting up my own site for a reason. LISnews however offers a more interactive environment and I've certainly taken advantage of it. But I don't pretend to believe that I am *entitled* to be here.

And again, and again, and yet again at no time have I advocated the complete banning of a viewpoint with the exception to porn.

I don't doubt I've offended a fair number of people. But I haven't done it by swearing, I don't think I've done it by belittling or name calling. This is the world as I see it and *no one has made arguements against some of the beliefs I've stated*. No one has argued the benefits of scholarships based on race. No one has argued the benefit of the MLS. No one has explained why reading is a right but not a responsibility. All of you are so locked into your assumptions you simply dismiss mine as radical. Has it occurred to any of you that since my guy is actually in the white house that maybe just maybe there is a large percentage of the population that actually agrees with me and that if a large majority of librarians don't, that in itself is possible problem?

I apologize for the rant, the bottom line is if Blake wants to ask me to go, I'm gone.

Re:What? Re:The Difference Re:Oh, for Chris' sake!

No no, if that was implied in my comment, that's not what I meant at all.There's only one person around here that really bugs me, and it's not you.

Re:What? Re:The Difference Re:Oh, for Chris' sake!

Blake! Tell us who! Tell us who! Please!

Re:What? Re:The Difference Re:Oh, for Chris' sake!

Good to know I don't really bug you, though to be honest my purpose is to bug you a little.

My remarks were mainly to willpie, I didn't think you were asking me to leave but I do believe its your decision who stays and who goes.

The main point was that I won't conform to suit the majority and I don't expect anyone else to. But I don't expect the majority to conform to me and people shouldn't be shocked because their community and the community's library doesn't either.

Re:What? Re:The Difference Re:Oh, for Chris' sake!

I hate to dust off the tired old "well Bush lost the popular vote" chestnut, but, well, Bush lost the popular vote. So maybe you ought to consider that there are also a lot of people who agree with me. Heck, maybe the president ought to consider that too! Well, maybe not; pretending we don't exist and moving us to "free speech zones" seems to be working out pretty well for him.

Regarding the general liberal tendencies of public servants, well, it comes down to values. The people who are willing to forgo the possibility of wealth for a degree of steadiness and the opportunity to serve their communities are largely (though certainly not exclusively) liberal. I don't understand how this comes as a shock to anyone. Academia tends to be liberal because you usually have to forgo wealth to participate in it, just like public service.
As for scholarships based on race, well, it turns out people can leave their money to their children when they die. As luck would also have it, there has historically been a great deal of racism in this country. The synergy of those two factors results in some races having a substantial disadvantage in their capacities to pass on money to pay for things like education. The result is all too often that yet another generation of poor people has nothing to pass on to its children, while the people with money can afford to teach their children a greater degree of self-sufficiency, and the poor are disproportionately represented among some races. Race-based scholarships are an attempt to level the playing field (for lack of a better metaphor). Now it's not a magic bullet; more like a finger in the dike, but I don't see why you would suggest taking a finger out of that dike just because another needs plugging. That seems like a call for more fingers to me (to really, really botch a metaphor). But I think you know that; I think you've heard it before, which is why I (and I supect a lot of other people) never bothered spelling it out.

I'm afraid I don't understand what you mean by the distinction between reading being a right and a responsibility, and I don't read this board frequently enough to be all caught up on what you've had to say about it in the past.

I am a far-left liberal, but when it comes to ALA

Greg S. and I tend to agree.So, Hell must have frozen over.

The Laundry List

1. a.We'll never know who won the popular vote. California and other states do not count mail-in votes if it doesn't affect the outcome. Meaning Gore won big enough in California that over a million votes didn't have to be counted because it wouln't have affected the outcome *in that state* but may have affected a national tally.
b. Mid-term elections that followed swung to the right. A clear sign of support.

2. Wealth and politics do not go hand-in-hand. There are plenty of poor conservatives (like me) and rich liberals to refute any such an arguement. The idea that academics forego a higher paycheck for the sake of higher thought assumes they would turn down a higher check if offered or that they would be capable of earning a higher check if so inclined. My view on why academics and librarians are heavily liberal is because they, in general, are heavy with reading skills and light on social skills and very little experience in the real world. (now thats a flamer)

3. Your explanation on scholarships based on race does not explain why asians can kick academic butt but blacks and hispanics need help. My explanation to that would be that asians have a very solid family structure and since they receive very little help are incredibly self-reliant. Probably another flamer. Let me add I'm not really interested in race, I'll say what I said on my site, another 50 years and we'll be a nation of mutts, a good thing btw.

4. The right vs responsibility concerns the Patriot Act and the ability of law enforcement to check library records in general.

These are long posts covering mutltiple topics, if you want to hash out each one inidvidually as they come up in the news thats fine. If you want to take on all of them in email thats fine too but tying traffic here on all these topics is a bit of a waste.

Group hug!

I am so feeling the love here!

Re:Oh, for "----" sake

Well, seems to me that people have a right to complain. A public library should be sensitive to and regard the opinions of the "public"--or is it just a handful of autocrats running the information supply for the masses?!!!

Autocrats!!!"

Re:The Laundry List

I really don't see why the popular vote matters. We don't select presidents based upon the popular vote. If the electoral college was good enough for my parents and grandparents then it is good enough for me. Bush won the electoral college, it doesn't matter if I like it or not, that is why he is president.


I am neither a rich conservative nor a poor liberal. I can support myself because of my education for which I received no scholarships. However why should scholarships go to people based upon their race, or hat size or any other reason than their ability and desire to succeed. There are plenty of internships and fellowships for traditionally under-represented librarians. I don't see a lot of basketball fellowships for short white guys. It we want a level playing field stop building artifical mountains on which to place certain persons.

I was in the Clearwater library 2 days ago and the circulation clerk was giving name and address informaiton to a police officer for someone they had kicked out of the library for complaining loudly that the public access internet terminals were not working. The Patriot act requires a subpoena or warrant, if you piss off a circulation clerk they give out any information they want. Don't be afraid of the government, be afraid of poorly trained staff.

Re:What? Re:The Difference Re:Oh, for Chris' sake!

No one has explained why reading is a right but not a responsibility.

Oh, I beg your pardon; I'll correct that oversight right now. Reading is a responsibility.

There are two ways of looking at your question, one of which is an equivocation, since it assumes responsibility other than in the way you use the word. Basically: what makes you a free person is that you have sole authority over and responsibility (accountability) for your own self. What this means is that you and you alone can make your choices, and any choice you make, regardless of what it is, is your fault. Going postal and blindly shooting a dozen total strangers is not your mommy's fault because she didn't love you. You and you alone are responsible for doing the shooting. The same holds for any reading you do -- or don't do, as the case may be.

The second answer, the one that you are looking for, is simply this: You have a responsibility (a duty to others) as a free person to make informed choices. The only way to make an informed choice is by gathering as much information and as many viewpoints as you can so as to weigh the available options. That means you must read. Books, newspapers, internet sites. Whatever. As a side benefit, mendacious, neo-fascistic, control freaks will not be able to gull you so easily if you can pick out their lies and propaganda for yourself, therefore ensuring more security against an undemocratic government.

Simple; no? I don't know where anyone would get the idea that reading is not a responsibility. It is a responsibility as much as voting is. Unfortunately, too many fail to discharge either responsibility, and then spend an inordinate amount of time bitching about the government they did nothing to keep from being elected.

Re:The Laundry List

b. Mid-term elections that followed swung to the right. A clear sign of support.

A clear sign of panic voting. "Please, Big Daddy Government, save me from the nasty terrorist!"

Wealth and politics do not go hand-in-hand.

How many poor people are congregating in D.C. to buy their own politicians the way the trans-national corporations and the filthy rich do?

Welcome Friends!!!!

walk away from titillation, become a pop culture dropout

I knew you would come around Fang. Suppose you guys pick up a six pack or two of Bass Ale on your way?

(flamers: just ribbing here)

Re:What? Re:The Difference Re:Oh, for Chris' sake!

You know what? I'm going to have to try to look at the book in question so I can reply to the actual article. I'm a children's librarian in a large urban system where we don't really get complaints about what's on the shelve. Too many people worried about putting food on the table, I guess.

I would hope no one wants the conservative librarians off the board. I am an east Tennessee hillbilly from a working class background who is pretty danged far to the left. As an undergraduate I worked under Mark Herring (the last I heard he was Dean of Libraries at Winthrop), who is the most far-right librarian I've ever met. Despite this, I respect the guy and would be happy to have him contribute here even if some of us would need a dictionary handy to decipher his posts.

The point is that I don't agree with much of what those on the right are doing, but I ain't got no problem with them expressing themselves. And I hope their boy loses the popular vote and the electoral vote in November. Anyone has a right to challenge a book, but as a parent I see it as my responsibility to see what my children are reading. I'm sure I'll challenge my kids over the years about what they're reading, and I'll leave it up to other parents to worry about what theirs are reading.

Re:Welcome Friends!!!!

I don't know what the hell this is supposed to mean, but if you are thinking that I'm leaning toward your political camp, forget it. I've already told you once that I'm apolitical. Seems like we couldn't drive an idea into your head with a ten pound sledge.

Hmmm, . . . although it might be amusing to try it.

And by the way, Tomeboy, lose the tagline. The censorware movement is the pop culture. Personal liberty and freedom is the mainstream. You are hardly in a position to advise others to walk away from pop culture when you so dogmatically embrace one.

Re:The Laundry List

I really don't see why the popular vote matters. We don't select presidents based upon the popular vote. If the electoral college was good enough for my parents and grandparents then it is good enough for me. Bush won the electoral college, it doesn't matter if I like it or not, that is why he is president.

Don't assume I'm disputing the legitimacy of the electoral college; I'm perfectly aware of its history and its role. But the fact of the matter remains that Bush at best won a very, very close election. So why does he routinely act as though there is no significant opposition to any of his agendas?

Also, one wonders if that's the tune you were playing when Clinton won the electoral college. Sauce for the goose, and all that. . .

That clerk could very likely be sued by the patron in question, and probably fired.

Finally, nowhere did I say that all conservatives are rich or that liberals are poor. If I was unclear, let me rephrase: you don't get rich in public service or academia. Therefore, people who regard wealth as a virtue don't enter these fields as often as people who are willing to sacrifice wealth in order to serve. There are exceptions, of course, but in the main, this lends itself to a lot of liberals becoming librarians, teachers, professors, social workers, and the like.

Re:The Laundry List

you don't get rich in public service or academia

Willpie - Depending on your definition of "rich" I may disagree with you. Many liberal politicians, Gephardt comes to mind, consider working families in the 60K to 70K range as too rich for tax breaks.

Re:Welcome Friends!!!!

I've already told you once that I'm apolitical.

Yes, several times I recall. I'll be sure to pass your note to the wrong-wingers at the
Republican National Guard.

Re:Welcome Friends!!!!

Just make sure you also pass it on to those god damned fools in the ultra-left, the parasites on both sides of the various Houses who are getting splinters in their hemmorhoids from sitting on the fence and who are subsequently indistinguishable one from the other, the trash who pay lip service to the idea of public service and sell themselves to the corporations, the summer soldiers and sunshine patriots who are utterly incapable of understanding that you don't protect the Bill of Rights by locking it and the ideals it stands for away in a vault and shooting anybody who wants to look at it, and misohomonist and misogynistic creeps who wouldn't hesitate to turn the U.S. into a totaltarian slave state.

Oh, yes, and your draft dodging, service deserting President Moron.

Which should just about include every lousy one of your elected and appointed officious.

Re:Welcome Friends!!!!

Who's bitching now?

Re:The Laundry List

In reference to Clinton, he did win the electoral college and he also didn't win a majority of the vote. I don't and didn't expect either to conform their agendas to make everyone happy. Leading means making certain people unhappy. Bush understands that, Clinton didn't.

The point to my original reference to Bush is that you guys need to stop being shocked that there are conservative librarians not that you have to agree with what I say.

"Finally, nowhere did I say that all conservatives are rich or that liberals are poor. If I was unclear, let me rephrase: you don't get rich in public service or academia. Therefore, people who regard wealth as a virtue don't enter these fields as often as people who are willing to sacrifice wealth in order to serve. There are exceptions, of course, but in the main, this lends itself to a lot of liberals becoming librarians, teachers, professors, social workers, and the like."

And people say I'm inflammatory? "Wealth as a virtue"? Where do you get this stuff? Do you know who sees wealth as a virtue? Ted Kennedy. Conservatives see wealth as something that happens, usually as a sign of success. But if they are successful its because they see initiative, imagination, and a load of hard work as virtues. Rumsfield is a very wealthy man and certainly someone who deserves a peaceful retirement. If I had been him in the Pentagon when the plane hit it I certainly would have considered that a good enough sign to settle down and enjoy what life I had left. He didn't, thank God he didn't, and wealth was not the reason. And before anyone says "power", where is the power in sitting in front of a bunch of self-impressed senators, listening to them whine and snipe?

Responsibility equals Accountability

The point is that if reading influences who you are and how you act then what you read should be allowed to be taken into consideration if you are caught committing or planning to commit a crime.

Re:The Laundry List

In reference to Clinton, he did win the electoral college and he also didn't win a majority of the vote.

Yep. And I don't know a lot of conservatives who didn't bitch to the high heavens about how unfair that was. But now that the shoe is on their foot, it suddenly seems a lot more comfortable. How odd.

Conservatives see wealth as something that happens, usually as a sign of success. But if they are successful its because they see initiative, imagination, and a load of hard work as virtues.

Oh yes, I see how that is completely different from regarding wealth as a virtue. Touché.

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