|Oak Park Public Library Logo|
Porn in the Oak Park Library!
Shocking, but true. And, in the kids' section, no less.
My wife and two little girls frequent the Oak Park Library, at least once or twice a week. They spend most of their time on the first floor kids' section. They color, read books and play with the computers.
Well, yesterday, they were there as usual and a young boy of around 11 or 12 years old wandered in, sat at a computer and proceeded to pull up hard core porn websites. All in full view of the parents, librarians and worse, the children. Not only were all the parents present horrified that a child would do this but exponentially worse is that they were informed by the librarian that our library network does not have filters to prevent something like this from happening. The librarian proceeded to tell the boy that he couldn't be in the kids' section and had to move up to the adult area of the library - not that he wasn't allowed to view that material on public machines.
Paul Marobella, Oak Park, IL
The only imaginable argument I could imagine from anyone why a public, tax-supported network would not be filtered is for freedom of speech/access. I don't buy it. The internet is a dark and dingy place and our children should not be exposed to this in our public library. It is one thing to have no filters on the adult section of the library (adult as in not child-section not as in adult/porn) but not having them in the kids' section is a travesty and one that we as parents should rally to have changed.
Does anyone have any advice on how we can take this further? Whom should we ping to ensure the youth of our children is preserved as long as possible? LHOP is our first stop to help rally a groundswell. I'm not much of an activist, but I have to draw the line somewhere.
|ALA Midwinter Meeting 2011 Logo|
I hope ALA members are enjoying themselves while the families back home are frantic that their children are being sexualized as a result of ALA policy made local library policy. That's right, the library adheres to ALA policy that anything goes.
"The Internet is a global electronic network that maintains no regulatory control of its users or content. The Oak Park Public Library has no control over the content of these resources." That's because the library refuses, thanks to the ALA, not because it is unable.
As with all materials in the Library, restriction of a child's access to the Internet is the responsibility of the parent or guardian; the Library does not act in place of the parent. Parents and guardians assume full and complete responsibility for their child/children's use of the Internet through the Library's connection.
Obviously they mean what they say, and another activist is born. Will someone please ask Paul Marobella to contact me?