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Cancel Culture Run Ever So Amok

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The Lexington Herald-Leader has an excellent two part story about the effort to shift control over libraries to local authorities. The upshot of this effort is, of course, an attempt to remove books that local authorities dislike from the shelves. Apologies for the gate but this is the world we live in…

The library, in a working-class Louisville suburb, immediately began to hear complaints about the award-winning graphic novel that last year topped the American Library Association’s list of most-challenged books. The book tells the cartoonist’s own life story about coming to terms with gender identity and sexual attraction. Ominous remarks were made to library employees and board members about child pornography on the library’s shelves. People demanded the removal of Gender Queer and, soon, a half-dozen other books targeted online by conservative pressure groups as well as in follow-up Facebook posts from Huff…

SB 167 allows county elected officials — judge-executives and fiscal courts — to change how libraries operate. If they choose, county leaders will be able to assume sole authority to name library board members; veto library spending above $1 million, such as building expansions and new branches; and force libraries to share or give away their buildings to educational institutions, including private K-12 schools and colleges.

These kinds of stories are uninteresting to anti-woke activists because they’re very much dog-bites-man; bigoted rural folk challenging books from local libraries with the support of hate-filled politicians is so 1970 and thus far less interesting than the opinions that Oberlin undergraduates might have about the sandwiches served in their cafeterias. This is not the kind of censorship that TCW or Wari Beiss or Fonnor Criedersdorf might ever suffer from and thus is fundamentally below their notice, even if it does represent the overwhelming bulk of content censorship in America today (and yesterday, and the yesterday before that, etc.). More to the point, you’ll notice that the titles being challenged are ones that can be squeezed into categories that anti-woke activists have themselves targeted, including anything with the odor of CRT or trans or queer. Long story short, anti-woke grifters are supplying ammunition to local authorities in rural Kentucky to ensure that the public is “protected” from ideas that are dangerous and unseemly, such as the notion that racial discrimination might at some point have existed in the United States or that trans people are human beings.

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