May Would Leave Minors Exposed To Inappropriate Materials

In recent years, parents and others have taken action to ensure that libraries do not make inappropriate books or activities available. In many instances, these actions have been taken in response to the discovery of material that promotes homosexual conduct and gender confusion and/or overtly sexual material in libraries. In other instances, parents have objected to “Drag Story Hours” being held in libraries.

Instead of taking action to protect the innocence of young children, at least one member of the New York State Senate wants to move libraries in the opposite direction.

Recently, left-wing Sen. Rachel May (D-Syracuse) has introduced a bill (Bill S.7677-May/A.7843-A-Kelles) that would oblige libraries receiving financial support from the state to create policies stating that “‘library materials, services, and programming shall not be proscribed or removed because of partisan or doctrinal disapproval.’”

Sen. May commented, “‘With our rich diversity and our commitment to free expression in New York state, we must ensure students have access to a broad range of materials to let them pursue a love of learning and reading.’”

In April 2023, May introduced a bill entitled the Freedom to Read Act (Bill S.6350-May/A.6873-O’Donnell). The so-called Freedom to Read Act would “ensure that school libraries and librarians are able to provide students with access to the widest array of age-appropriate materials available to such school district.” This bill passed the State Senate on June 6, 2023.

One problem with these bills is their vagueness. Clearly, New Yorkers’ perspectives differ as to what is age-appropriate for children and teens. The Freedom to Read Act provides no information on how age-appropriateness is to be determined.

The larger problem with these bills is the intention behind them. While New Yorkers for Constitutional Freedoms agrees that students should have access to “a broad range of materials to let them pursue a love of learning and reading,” the true purpose here is to promote materials and activities on a path that leads to their destruction. Christian New Yorkers must speak out against these bills.