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Ozark Mayor blasts local library over LGBTQ+ young adult books

Ozark Mayor Mark Blankenship said he’s frustrated that certain young adult LGBTQ+ books have not been removed from the Ozark-Dale County Public Library.

Blankenship took to Facebook over the weekend to blast the library for keeping the books on shelves.

“We have been trying to remove this trash from the kids section of our library for several months,” Blankenship said. “We have been told several times it would be removed. It never happens and the library receives three or four more books per month.”

He then called on people to contact their city council members and also said it’s time to cut the funding if nothing changes.

“I know most of you are too busy to attend this meeting but you can contact your city council or county commission members and encourage them to cut their funding to the Dale County Library,” he said. “If we cut the funding they will be closed and our children will not be exposed to this mess. It’s time the majority of the people stand up and address this liberal mess in Alabama.

According to the library’s Facebook page, a special meeting has been called and will be streamed live Wednesday at 10am.

After receiving some criticism for the post, Blankenship said he’s not backing down on the issue.

“Not so complicated,” he said. “Last nights post is for Gay people and Straight people Children should not be exposed to sexualized books of ANY genre in the public library. Live, love but do not push on children. Let them be little.”

Council president Brenda Simechak disagreed with the mayor and emphasized her support for the library.

“I will not be seeking to nor will I ever vote to defund our Ozark-Dale County Public Library. The government has no business censoring content in a public library. A library’s purpose for existence is to provide access to information to all of its patrons,” Simechak said in a statement.

“When the government deprives someone the right to receive information and ideas, they are practicing censorship. The government can’t argue freedom of speech, but then dictate content. The government does not get to forcefully impose personal beliefs on individuals.”

Yaffee is a contributing writer to Yellowhammer News and hosts “The Yaffee Program” weekdays 9-11 a.m. on WVNN. You can follow him on Twitter @Yaffee

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