Saturday, February 28, 2009

SafeLibraries Loves Authors and Opposes Censorship; Please Visit Brent Hartinger's New Fantasy Venture:

SafeLibraries firmly opposes censorship and supports authors. My efforts to educate the public about how the American Library Association [ALA] misleads local communities into allowing children access to inappropriate material leads my opponents to claim otherwise.

These "intellectual freedom" people call me all sorts of names like Hitler, the Taliban, an un-American censor, a Christian nut, a right-wing commentator, a pro-filter activist, an anti-porn activist, you name it. The Holy Bible is frequently a target as well, like one person calling it a "salaciously smutty, pornographically perverted tome." That's okay, my friends like Know Your Library (St. Louis, MO) thank me and cases like US v. ALA are my support.

Be that as it may, I have the pleasure of corresponding with a number of authors. Really, this is part of the fun I have running SafeLibraries. Here are some of the authors, in alphabetical order, whom I now consider my email friends:
Sometimes the authors themselves question me even as I support them, like when Arthur Slade said:
Thanks for recommending our books to readers. Though I assume you don't mean to recommend the ones with swear words and sex in them.
to which I responded, evidencing total consistency in my message and my joy in corresponding with authors, in this case KL Going:
As to recommending your books, parents should check some of them out first, but I'm not the judge or censor people claim I am so as to defend the ALA's propaganda. I do know you authors are genuinely interested in writing interesting and relevant material, and that is yet another reason why it is so interesting to have this conversation with you.

KL Going's book, "Fat Kid Rules the World," for example. I would not give that book to my kid, but certain children are really reached by that book, and parents will know if the book is right for their children. But it should not be shotgunned out on all children without warning by public institutions. I think even KL Going believes that, and I have corresponded with her on this. It's on her own web blog. She, like the rest of you, is a really fine author reaching out to many children. None of this would even be happening if you folks weren't writing good books. Keep it up.
Anyway, I enjoy what I do and I'm happy to have corresponded with a number of authors whom I now consider my friends and with whom I occasionally correspond.

Speaking of my support for authors, allow me to highlight the efforts of Brent Hartinger. Brent has just begun a new venture and it's very interesting. He has created:
a brand spanking new website,, devoted entirely to fantasy: movies, TV, games, theater, books, web series, graphic novels, etc. I'm the editor, and we will have daily-updated reporting of fantasy-related news, commentary, interviews, and reviews in both text and video format.
Please go visit TheTorchOnline now, right now, and subscribe to get the latest fantasy news, etc. And check out Brent's new book, Project Sweet Life.

Thank you to all authors for helping make life so interesting for so many. Please don't let my efforts to balance the ALA's misinformation in local communities let you think I do not support you 100%, no matter what you write.


Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Flat Out Lying by Caroline Martin, San Jose Public Library Commissioner

San Jose Public Library's commissioner, Caroline Martin, is flat out lying to the public. 100% lying. She is saying, "The fact is, Internet filters are censorship." No. Internet filters are legal and pose no threat of censorship when used properly. See United States v. American Library Association [ALA].

Really, read the case. Then read the propaganda below reprinted from, and remember this propaganda shows Caroline Martin and others are representing the interests of the ALA, those not of San Jose citizens or San Jose State University students.

Either Caroline Martin is completely incompetent or she is flat out lying to the public and the media.

I shall intercalate my comments below:

Books Not Filters
Take Action to Stop Censorship in Your Library
"Libraries are community treasure chests, loaded with a wealth of information available to everyone equally, and the key to that treasure chest is the library card."
– Former First Lady Laura Bush

We agree with Mrs. Bush. [SafeLibraries: True, but the material specifically excludable under US v. ALA is not part of the subset of "information" that should be "available to everyone equally," else why would the US Supreme Court allow for excluding certain material.]

Right now, the San Jose Public Library system is under attack.
[SafeLibraries: False. The library used to comply with community interests. Now it complies with the interests of the ALA, a third party organization that believes it is age discrimination for a librarian to keep any material from children no matter what the US Supreme Court said about this. Community efforts to restore control of the library to local interests is not an "attack." If anything, it's a response to the setting aside of local interests by ALA acolytes following ALA directives.] In the coming weeks, the San Jose City Council will consider a proposal to impose Internet filters in public libraries called the "Internet Pornography Filter Policy." [SafeLibraries: False. To "impose" is to bring about as if by force. Actually, the ALA acolytes imposed the current system on the public, likely by using the same propaganda it's using now. A representative government acts on behalf of its citizens--it does not "impose" anything.] The proposal is an attack on civil liberties and masquerades as child protection. [SafeLibraries: False. I suppose by this reasoning the US Supreme Court in US v. ALA attacked civil liberties and masqueraded as child protection.] The fact is, Internet filters are censorship. [SafeLibraries: False. See US v. ALA. The ALA lost on this very issue. Caroline Martin knows or should know this.] Moreover, filters do not accomplish the job proponents would have us believe. [SafeLibraries: False. Even the ACLU now says filters are 95% effective and no longer block health-related web sites. See ACLU v. Gonzales, E.D. Pa., March 2007.]

We are asking you to take action against this proposal.

How big a problem is pornography in our public libraries?
This proposal is a solution in search of problem. The advocates pushing the censorship proposal
[SafeLibraries: False, it's not "censorship."] make the claim that our libraries are a dangerous place for kids because there is pornography coming out of every book and every computer screen. This could not be further from the truth. Last year, in the Martin Luther King, Jr. Library there were only ten complaints among 700,000 Internet sessions – or roughly 0.001% of Internet sessions leading to complaints. And, last year, roughly 1,400,000 Internet sessions netted zero complaints in the branch libraries. In fact, over the past decade, the Library administration received an average of 3 complaints per year. [SafeLibraries: False in that it is misleading. Consider the following:

San Francisco Bay Area, CA: "Porn, Sex Crimes At Libraries; I-Team Investigation," KGO, 29 Nov 2006, "[T]he Martin Luther King Library has a problem with pornography. They have no rule against viewing photographs or full-screen sex videos from Internet sites, even with children nearby. Chief librarian Jane Light says it's a matter of free speech. .... ABC7's Dan Noyes: 'I've seen the [privacy] screens and I see how they work and the stuff is visible from behind. You can see everything.' Jane Light...: 'So you can avert your eyes.' .... San Jose's police blotter over the past year lists several arrests for child porn at the library, at least ten cases of child molestation or other sex crimes involving kids and several cases of men viewing porn and performing a lewd act, right at the terminal. .... Sgt. John Laws, San Jose library police: 'It showed him sitting at the computer terminal and ... masturbating.' .... Marcia Stacke, Child Quest International: 'You know, sometimes I wonder if we're just too afraid to be, I don't know, sued in this country. We've got to step out and protect our kids. Enough is enough.'"

Now reread what Caroline Martin said then decide if she is being intentionally misleading.]

"Second-hand porn," as advocates like to call it, is not an issue at any of our libraries.
[SafeLibraries: False, as the above news story proves. I really don't understand how she thinks she can get away with these flat out lies.] We have made it a point to visit our libraries dozens if not hundreds of times going out of our way to look for inappropriate content, and never once have we seen anything objectionable on others' screens. [SafeLibraries: Great, the "avert your eyes" people didn't see anything. They have no credibility in this case.]

Let the City Council know that you don’t believe in solutions in search of problems.

In the midst of the City’s budget crisis, is this the best way to spend limited resources?
[SafeLibraries: Desparation is evident here where this red herring argument is raised, as the first argument to "let the City Council know," no less. Besides, is "limited resources" a reason to leave children exposed to what ABC7 Dan Noyes reported?] At a time when the City Council is considering cutting the most vital City services – this is not the time to waste money to buy expensive, ineffective computer software for the more than 800 library computers. Just this week, the City Council is considering whether to cut millions of dollars from health care education for kids or fund crossing guards. These things are vital for young people’s health and safety. Let’s keep our eyes on the ball and spend our valuable tax dollars where they make a difference. [SafeLibraries: So this entire paragraph of what to tell the City Council relates only to financial concerns.]

Send a message to the City Council that you think there are other priorities for the City’s limited budget.

Who is sponsoring the so-called "Internet Pornography Filter Policy"?
The "Internet Pornography Filter Policy" is being sponsored by the Values Advocacy Council.
[SafeLibraries: The second reason to "let the City Council know" is that the people seeking to protect children are from the Values Advocacy Council. In other words, attack the messenger. The messenger of the message is supposedly so far out that we are all supposed to ignore the message in the first place. The use of ad hominem argument is merely a further sign of desperation at not having a legitimate substantive claim to make.] The Values Advocacy Council is using their Council ally, Councilmember Pete Constant, to push this proposal. [SafeLibraries: What a joke. Here's an organization that works tirelessly to gain allies in the government. Entire sections of library associations are devoted to library advocacy. But let Values Advocacy Council get just one ally and that's supposedly another reason to leave children unprotecting by legally available and effective means.] To make their case, the Values Advocacy Council is making the outrageous claim that young people could turn into serial killers if Internet filters are not imposed on library computers. [SafeLibraries: VAC is closer to the truth here than is Caroline Martin who in the midst of another ad hominem argument.] This is a scare tactic plain and simple. [SafeLibraries: And lying to the public isn't?] The Values Advocacy Council and Councilmember Constant are giving the City Council a false choice between kids and pornography. Only you can give the City Council the courage to stand up for what is right.

Tell the City Council that you believe censorship has no place in our libraries.
[SafeLibraries: False, legal filters under US v. ALA are not "censorship," so Pete Constant is not seeking to censor anything. I'll say that again. Pete Constant is not seeking to censor anything.]

The proponents of the “Internet Pornography Filtering Policy” are well-organized and highly motivated.
[SafeLibraries: Perhaps, but so is the library. I learned about this from a very large email distribution list from the ALA itself. Hundreds of ALA members are being urged to respond, indeed anyone nationwide, perhaps thousands: "If you believe that filtering is not in our library's interests, please review the email below, take a look at the Books Not Filters website, and if you feel so inclined, email our council members. .... You can forward this message on to anyone else you know who might be against filters in the San Jose Public Library, or any library for that matter."] We need your help to stand up to this proposal and provide support for our brave City Councilmembers who may oppose this policy. Protect all our kids and grandkids today and tomorrow, let the council know censorship does not belong in our libraries.

Send an email to the Mayor and City Council today. Have your voice heard.
[Safelibraries: False. People are lied to then told to voice a concern, but that voice is really Caroline Martin's. When people learn the truth, like about US v. ALA, when they are truly informed instead of misinformed, then they would instead call to encourage Pete Constant.]

Thank you for your time and for standing up for our libraries.
[SafeLibraries: False. Acting out based on propaganda and flat out lies only means unwittingly standing up for ALA values, not local community interests purposefully left ignorant of US v. ALA.]


Caroline Martin
San Jose Library Commissioner*

Catherine Graham
San Jose Library Commissioner*

Mike Hoa Nguyen
San Jose Library Commissioner*

*Titles listed for identification purposes only. The Commissioners are not speaking on behalf of the Library Commission.
[SafeLibraries: Excuse me? Now you tell us? It's irrelevant anyway as this web site is being broadcast for action by librarians nationwide, and by people acting in their official capacities, like in the ALA.]

Please, ask your friends to take action [SafeLibraries: This is from Caroline Martin to a prominent librarian in this area geographically and topically. Anything to spread the propaganda. One ALA member then retransmitted this to hundreds of ALA members. See how this works? The citizens of San Jose are not this well organized and are about to get crushed ... again.]
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Monday, February 23, 2009

Porn for Children Says Betty Long, Roswell Public Library Director

The Roswell Public Library's director Betty Long allows children unimpeded access to porn on Internet filters. She is also the American Library Association [ALA] Chapter Councilor for the New Mexico Library Association.

But library officials say it's the parents' responsibility to restrict what their children are doing online.

"If they're concerned with what they're viewing on the internet, they need to be there guiding them on their use of the internet," said Director or Roswell Public Library Betty Long.

Source: "Roswell Library Defends Internet Usage Policy," by Katy Ryan, KOB Eyewitness News 4, 23 February 2009.

Just yesterday I wrote "Playboy for Children Says Gina Millsap, Topeka and Shawnee County Public Library Executive Director," about another ALA leader pushing porn on that community's children. Roswell, you are not alone.

The ALA's so-called "Library Bill of Rights," as if it's supposed to be controlling constitutional law, essentially claims it is age discrimination for librarians to keep children from any material whatsoever. That's the parents job. Exactly what Betty Long and Gina Millsap are saying. Citizens are supposed to ignore or never even hear about US v. ALA. That's where the US Supreme Court said, "The interest in protecting young library users from material inappropriate for minors is legitimate, and even compelling, as all Members of the Court appear to agree."

Is anyone else starting to see a pattern here? Is local control of libraries possible where ALA acolytes are misleading the local citizenry? Is pornography "information" for children? Is saying it's the parents fault that children are viewing unfiltered Internet pornography in a public library acceptable? Do people realize communities do not want porn pushed on their children and library directors who talk and act otherwise are actually representing the ALA, not their communities? Are there no consequences for failure to act in the public's interest?

"One New Mexico library is defending its internet use policy against parents who say it gives kids full access to pornographic websites." Why is the library "against parents"?

Roswell citizens, will you act to stop your library's director from allowing the sexualization of your children in your public library? Contact me and I will attempt to assist you in righting this wrong.


Sunday, February 22, 2009

Playboy for Children Says Gina Millsap, Topeka and Shawnee County Public Library Executive Director

The Topeka & Shawnee County Public Library's executive director Gina Millsap has recommended children have unimpeded access to Playboy magazine. She is also the President-Elect of the American Library Association's [ALA] Library Leadership & Management Ass'n [LLAMA].

"I respectfully submit that I believe that the Board of Trustees should affirm its current Library Materials Selection, Circulation and User Confidentiality policies with two changes. 1. Lift the restriction on R-rated films in the Circulation policy. 2. Discontinue the practice of putting certain magazines behind the service desk, including Playboy. That will ensure that we are consistent in the way we provide access to all library materials and ensure user confidentiality."

Source: "Letter From Gina Millsap, Executive Director; To Topeka and Shawnee County Public Library Board of Trustees; Dated February 13, 2009; Re: Expression of Concern from Mrs. Kim Borchers," by Gina Millsap, Topeka & Shawnee County Public Library, 13 February 2009, 4 pp, emphasis added.

Need I say more? This reminds me of the ALA's de facto leader saying, "Parents who would tell their children not to read Playboy 'don't really care about their kids growing up and learning to think and explore.'" And why is the ALA still considered authoritative?

As president of the ALA's LLAMA, will Gina Millsap recommend the same for libraries nationwide? Playboy for children—what a fine example for a LLAMA president to set.

As Gina Millsap said in her letter, emphasis in original, "What if the national media focuses on the issue? There is also our reputation to consider." Fine job, Gina Millsap, recommending children have access to Playboy and R-rated flicks despite the interests of the local community whom you obviously do not serve. This as a reaction to the subsequently successful effort to restrict children without parental consent from accessing "The Joy of Gay Sex" and three similar books. I'm certain your recommendation will help your community's national reputation.


Gina Millsap is now running for ALA President!  Playboy for all children in the whole country!

SafeLibraries says vote for Barbara K. Stripling.


Gina Millsap is now teaching her technique for ensuring children retain access to Playboy to the PLA 2012, a convention for the ALA's Public Library Association.  Can there be any doubt if she becomes ALA President what she will promote?  Look how it is worded, "recent library board attempts to limit access to library materials by age in Topeka."  Look at the title, "When Trustees ... Collide!"

Intellectual Freedom Update 2012: When Trustees and Meeting Rooms Collide!
Friday, March 16, 20122:00 PM - 3:15 PM
Venue: Pennsylvania Convention Center
Room: 115-C
Join Gina Millsap, Topeka-Shawnee County Public Library Executive Director; Kathy Middleton, Contra Costa County Public Library Senior Community Library Manager; and Kent Oliver, Freedom to Read Foundation President for a spirited intellectual freedom discussion. This program will focus on recent library board attempts to limit access to library materials by age in Topeka and the public meeting room policies challenged by the Faith Ministries Church in Contra Costa County.

Subject Track or Type of Session
Speaker : Kathy Middleton, Senior Community Library Manager, Contra Costa County Library
Speaker : Gina Millsap, Chief Executive Officer, Topeka & Shawnee County Public Library
Program Organizer and Speaker : Kent Oliver, Executive Director, Stark County District Library

Reminder about what the US Supreme Court said in a case the ALA lost big:
"The interest in protecting young library users from material inappropriate for minors is legitimate, and even compelling, as all Members of the Court appear to agree."
Apparently Gina Millsap knows better than the unanimous US Supreme Court on that issue, and better than the citizens and even the library board of trustees of Topeka.

I'm an not being sensational.  I am merely reporting on and republishing what she is doing at PLA 2012.  She is the one, not me, who is reaching over the heads of the community and the library board of trustees to bring the ACLU/ALA policy into Topeka.

And in attachments being handed out at her lecture, indoctrination training is being given on how to get librarians to ignore their own innate sense of right and wrong.  It is a propaganda technique, the name of which escapes me at the moment.  Contact her.  Ask for the handouts.  See for yourselves.

Imagine if she becomes ALA President.  She'll know better than the entire nation!  Already the ALA forces its way on a third of the nation's libraries in a manner that harms children, says the author of the Children's Internet Protection Act.  Gina Millsap will just pile on.

Remember, if librarians survive the indoctrination, please report to me what happened, and join those librarians willing to work together to stop this very kind of child-unfriendly behavior.


The ALA avoids near disaster by electing a president who has NOT publicly supported Playboy magazine and R-rated movies for children in public libraries.  Hooray!!


Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Humberto Fontova, the Media's "Book Banning" Claims, and the ALA's Opposition to the "Right to Apply Accuracy" in Public Schools

Humberto Fontova becomes another person exposing false claims of "book banning" and "censorship." (Thomas Sowell and "National Hogwash Week" comes to mind.)

Most of America, for instance, applauds "parental involvement" in their children's education. But a recent New York Times editorial decries it. "Banning Books in Miami," blares their editorial headline from February 10th. "The Miami-Dade School Board's decision is not only unconstitutional, it is counterproductive. If the (local school) board wants to oppose the totalitarianism of the Castro regime, banning books is an odd way to go about it."


Last week a federal appeals panel in Atlanta ruled that the Miami-Dade School Board has 'the right to apply accuracy as a criteria for educational purposes.' The appeals court noted that the book indeed 'contained factual errors that distorts what life is like in that dictatorship.'

Source: "The New York Times and 'Book Banning,'" by Humberto Fontova, Human Events, 16 February 2009, emphasis added.

Please read "The New York Times and 'Book Banning.'" I'm especially intrigued by the "right to apply accuracy" in public schools and why it appears perceived violations of this obvious right are labeled "banning" and "censorship" by the media, the ACLU, and the American Library Association [ALA].

The ALA? Mr. Fontova did not discuss this in his article, but the ALA agrees wholeheartedly with the ACLU:

Deborah Caldwell-Stone, deputy director of the American Library Association’s Office for Intellectual Freedom, told American Libraries, “Naturally we are disappointed with this decision. The book ban is unconstitutional, and we will continue to support the ACLU’s efforts to return the books to the shelves of the Miami-Dade school libraries.” ALA’s Freedom to Read Foundation had filed an amicus curiae brief (PDF file) for the plaintiffs in ACLU of Florida v. Miami-Dade School Board, along with Reforma and other groups.

Source: "Appeals Court: Miami-Dade Book Ban Isn't Censorship," by ALA, American Libraries, 11 February 2009.
Apparently, the ALA opposes the "right to apply accuracy" in public schools and local control of public libraries, in this case "parental involvement" in public school libraries. More fuel for "National Hogwash Week." More reasons the ALA should no longer be considered authoritative by community members supporting local libraries; the ALA actively works against their interests, even in the face of relevant legal decisions.


Note that the right to apply accuracy is so important that a national park refused to sell a book that was factually inaccurate:


Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Laughing At Jim Ogle of WIBW for Falsely Claiming Censorship to Fool the Public

You have to laugh at Jim Ogle, WIBW General Manager, who is misleading his viewers/listeners with false claims of "censorship." In "They're All Going to Laugh at You!," by Jim Ogle, WIBW, 6 February 2009, Jim can be seen claiming that Kansas will become the laughing stock of the nation for "censoring" public library books. The funny thing is, censorship is not involved, yet he mentions it four times in under two minutes, and he is an influential media member. He's flat out misleading Kansans.

The facts are these:
  • the Topeka & Shawnee County Public Library already keeps Playboy magazine in a manner that precludes access by children,
  • citizens are requesting the library treat four books in the same fashion as it already treats Playboy,
  • the books are far more explicit than Playboy,
  • no one is trying to remove the books from the library,
  • no one is trying to get the library to do anything different from what it is already doing, and
  • other libraries are already keeping children from accessing the very same books.

Yet there's prominent media member Jim Ogle misleading the public with false claims of "censorship." Then he tells the public, "They're all going to laugh at you!" His goal is to get people to think as he wants them to think, and he's the general manager of a major media outfit! "Leave work early to speak out against an act that will paint Kansas at [sic] backward," he says. What a demagogue.

As Dan Gerstein once wrote, emphasis mine, "The ... elites have convinced themselves that they are taking a stand against cultural tyranny. .... [T]he reality is that it is those who cry "Censorship!" the loudest who are the ones trying to stifle speech and force their moral world-view on others." Source: "Why the Democrats Are Losing the Culture Wars," by Dan Gerstein, Wall Street Journal, 11 April 2005.

Think, Kansans. Don't be fooled by demagogues. Your library is already sequestering Playboy from children. The precedent is already set. Books vastly more explicit than Playboy may be similarly sequestered. If not, Playboy must be made available to children to avoid any double standard.


Big Win for St. Louis Citizens; Library Labels Books For Age Appropriateness After Citizen Protest

Yes we can! Citizens can work together to toss out the out-of-town policies of the American Library Association [ALA]!

This is the case where the ALA used its victory over Oak Lawn, IL, and to guide the St. Louis, MO, library director to lie to the media and the public to ensure ALA policies control. Some media had also misled the public. I have written a number of reports on the St. Louis County Public Library, including an article in the St. Louis MetroVoice, so I am very happy the library has decided to use simple common sense to alert parents to the contents of children's books.

See, "County Library Labels Teen Books with Sexual Content; System Set Up After Protests by Anti-Porn Group," by Steve Birmingham, Suburban Journals, 9 February 2009:

Charles Pace, St. Louis County Library executive director, said the purpose of the labeling system is not to prevent people from checking out materials, but rather to let parents know which materials are for younger and which are for older children.

“It’s just something to give parents a little bit of extra guidance, so they know that those materials have mature subject matter,” Pace said. “The books will remain where they are, but will just have a different label on them.” The library already reviews books with guidance from the American Library Association and in case of further complaints they have a reconsideration of materials policy, Pace said.

Anyone who objects to certain passages in specific books can file a request for review, Pace said.

Bravo, Charles Pace! Common sense and local values edged out ALA policies. What a breath of fresh air. Congratulations to Laura Kostial, Know Your Library, and Citizens Against Pornography.

This is a big win for St. Louis citizens. What an excellent example for other communities on how to use patience, persistence, and precedent to ensure common sense local policies apply in local public libraries, not out-of-state ALA policies and misinformation.


Friday, February 6, 2009

James Taranto Mocks ALA Ethics And Rightly So; ALA Leadership "Blatantly Violates Ethics"

James Taranto of the Wall Street Journal mocks the American Library Association's [ALA] apparent lack of adherence to its own Code of Ethics of the ALA. Despite claims of patron confidentiality, a library must have leaked information about USAir hero pilot Chesley "Sully" Sullenberger. Mr. Taranto calls this a "blatant violation of the ALA's ethics."

He then cleverly illustrates the ALA's ridiculous use of "slippery slope" arguments that are used to, for example, justify why librarians should allow children access to sexually inappropriate material or why libraries should allow computers to display p0rn despite local interests:

Now, we know what you're thinking: Surely in this case an exception is in order. Revealing the story didn't do Sullenberger any harm, and it was an inspiration to us all. But this is a slippery slope. Today it's Sullenberger, tomorrow no one's privacy will be safe. Maybe the next victim will be some innocent terrorist checking out books on how to make bombs, or a poor pervert who just wants to look at porn. Once you start cutting ethical corners, you're on the way to total moral breakdown. ("This Looks Like a Job for Patrick Fitzgerald," by James Taranto, Wall Street Journal—Best of the Web, 5 February 2009.)

Bravo, Mr. Taranto!

But, Mr. Taranto, the ALA has already decried the violation of a 9/11 terrorist's privacy when de facto ALA leader Judith Krug said she wished library privacy laws had been respected after a Florida librarian reported the terrorist to the police. See "A Nation Challenged: Questions of Confidentiality; Competing Principles Leave Some Professionals Debating Responsibility to Government," by David E. Rosenbaum, The New York Times, 23 November 2001.

And do not forget the library employee fired and the library patron kicked out for reporting child p0rnography on library computers.

How's that for "blatant violation of the ALA's ethics"—or maybe the ALA's leadership had no ethics in the first place.


Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Obama Picks Ogden, Who Opposed Library Filters in US v. ALA, for Deputy Secretary of Justice

President Obama has nominated David Ogden for Deputy Secretary of the Department of Justice. Mr. Ogden submitted an amici curiae brief to the US Supreme Court in US v. American Library Association. That case found the Children's Internet Protection Act (CIPA) to be constitutional, but Mr. Ogden argued it was not.

According to "Obama Picks Porn Lawyer for #2 at Justice," Fidelis, 3 February 2009, emphasis added:
"President Obama has made a major mistake and put America's families at risk by selecting David Ogden to become Deputy Attorney General.... David Ogden ... can't run from his long record of opposing common sense laws protecting families, women, and children. .... Ogden's record is nothing short of obscene. .... He has opposed filters on library computers protecting children from Internet smut.... David Ogden has collected checks from Playboy and Penthouse to fight any attempts to establish filters on federally-funded public libraries.... At a time when America's families are under increasing assault, Mr. Ogden is a dangerous choice for a position whose responsibilities include the enforcement of our nation's laws."

Here is Fidelis's "Research Brief on David W. Ogden, Nominee for Deputy Attorney General," Fidelis, 3 February 2009.

In my opinion, Obama is entitled to nominate anyone he wishes, and an attorney representing the porn industry or arguing against Internet filters is doing exactly what lawyers do. Yes, it may indicate where his interests lie, but I'm just happy he was on the losing side in the CIPA case.

But what do you think?

Sunday, February 1, 2009

The ALA Supports Terrorists

In yet another example showing how and why the American Library Association [ALA] supports terrorists and should lose its 501(c)(3) tax exempt status for political actions having nothing to do with American libraries, please see "ALA Responsible for Every Society on Earth!," by Annoyed Librarian, Library Journal, 29 January 2009.

Sample quotes:
  • If you, for example, think that the American Library Association shouldn't take stands on political issues that have nothing to do with American libraries, the regressive librarians start attacking you as a "conservative" or "fascist" or whatever other nonsense pops into their heads.
  • Councilors who voted for these things were either as willing to have the ALA look like a ridiculous mouthpiece for blowhards as the regressive librarians or they were so beaten down by the constant badgering of the regressives that they caved in just to shut them up. Either way, the ALA looks silly.
  • From the report, we can see the real interest: "changing the policies of the US government." That's what we need to do to "achieve peace." How is this relevant? Oh yeah, to prevent the destruction of all those libraries in Gaza. Are there any American libraries in Gaza? Somehow I don't think so, but then again no one really cares about that. What really matters is opposing Israel, and all this talk of libraries is just a red herring.
  • It's good to know that the ALA not only has "social responsibilities" for American society, but for every society in the world, except Cuba of course.
  • However, it's eminently clear this has absolutely nothing to do with American libraries or the ALA's alleged "social responsibilities" and everything to do with the regressive librarians getting the ALA Council to be a mouthpiece for their politics. If they tried to pass a resolution against Hamas firing rockets into Israel (which might destroy libraries, after all) or refusing to recognize Israel's right to exist (which also exacerbates conflict), I'd be shocked speechless, but would still be opposed. But we all know that won't happen.