Bill restricting what minors can view at public libraries moves closer to final passage

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One of the “social hot button” bills before the legislature this year – a bill to restrict what minors can see and read at public libraries – moves closer to passage after clearing a House committee Tuesday. Senate Bill 7, from Turkey Creek Republican Senator Heather Cloud, drew opposition in the House Education Committee from St. Tammany resident Joan Simon, who accuses Republicans of using the issue to score points with voters…:

“Librarians are being unfairly demonized. Called names. Threatened, in fact. And why? For political gain. It’s fear-mongering. It’s grandstanding”

Speaking for Senator Cloud’s bill was Attorney General (and candidate for Governor) Jeff Landry, who says his investigators were able to find abundant evidence of adult materials available to children in Louisiana libraries…:

“Graphic illustrations of young people engaging in sexual activities…detailed descriptions of young adults engaged in sexual acts…book that discuss how to perform said deeds…”

But Louisiana Association of School Librarians President Amanda Jones says child safeguards are already in place at virtually ALL libraries, and she says people are using libraries and librarians as political pawns…:

“As a Christian myself, I think Jesus is looking down on us – seeing what people are doing to libraries and librarians in our state, and He weeps.”

The bill has been accused of seeking to ban books; a claim refuted by A.G. Jeff Landry as not true…:

“All this bill does is simply ensure that our libraries are grading the books that are coming into them, and placing them on age-appropriate shelves.”

By a vote of 8-to-3, the committee approves the measure. The bill has already passed in the Senate. It moves now to House floor debate, and possible final passage.

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