Michigan Residents Vote To Defund Public Library Over Explicit Children’s Books A Second Time

The pendulum is swinging back! A library that openly offered LGBT books to be checked out is now at risk of being closed permanently after community members of a Western Michigan town voted to defund it for a second time.

Election results from Michigan’s Ottawa County reported that almost 56% of voters in Jamestown Township rejected a measure to renew a property tax that makes up over 80% of the annual operating budget for Patmos Library.

Board President Larry Walton warned that Patmos Library would have to lessen its operating hours should the tax proposal fail in a statement to Bridge Michigan last week.

Walton has been reported as saying that the library will likely run out of funds by early 2024.

A campaign ran by Jamestown conservatives who claimed the library was “grooming” children for sexual exploitation by making explicit LGBT books available to children.

One of the books found in the library, Maia Kobabe’s “Gender Queer: A Memoir” is a graphic novel that depicts acts of homosexual sex. Many people speaking out against allowing children access to such content have shared parts of the book on social media. Viewer discretion is advised:

The explicit book has faced similar attacks in other states before:

“They are trying to groom our children to believe that it’s OK to have these sinful desires,” Jamestown Conservatives member Amanda Ensing said to Bridge Michigan in August.

Members of the Patmos Library Board advocated for the tax to be renewed prior to Tuesday’s vote.

“….We know very clearly that what this library needs to remain open over the long term is to pass the 10-year levy renewal in November,” the board wrote. “We cannot run the Patmos Public Library for the next decade without stable taxpayer support.”

“If the levy passes, we will remain a public library and use the donations to add to our capacities,” the board continued. “If the levy fails, we will put these donations to work in the best way we can for as long as we can.”

Numerous Patmos Library staff members including former Director Amber McLain have left the position over the past year after they were angrily confronted for their refusal to remove the LGBT books, according to The Hill.