Conservative residents of a small Iowa town criticized the local public library’s LGBTQ+ staff and displays of LGBTQ-related books to the point that most employees left.
As a result, the library is now closed for the foreseeable future.At first, controversy erupted over the Vinton Public Library's display of books about prominent Democrats and then over its display of LGBTQ+ books and staff members who identify as LGBTQ+.Taking the Vinton job in May 2020, Janette McMahon, who has been library director since 1995, told the Cedar Rapids Gazette that some patrons complained informally about the library’s display of books written by First Lady Jill Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris and not enough books on former President Donald Trump.“I can’t buy what doesn’t exist, and there weren’t quality books about Trump,” she told the Gazette. “It’s a long process to choose materials typically.
We pay attention to reviews and publishers, and our collection needs as a whole. We don’t just say what looks good on Amazon.”Some people would check out books they believed were problematic instead of filing a formal complaint, McMahon said.
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