In Maury County, Tennessee, Maury County Library Director Zachary Fox has been forced to resign, after a group of homophobes got upset about a LGBTQ-friendly Pride Month book display. Brendan Tierney of WYMT News explains:
On Wednesday night, the board approved Zachary Fox's resignation with regret. Library leaders said Fox decided to step aside because of the mounting pressure from Maury County community members. A group of people spoke out on social media starting in June against the books they deemed inappropriate for included LGBTQ topics.
Debate over the issue got heated during Wednesday's meeting as people on both sides argued if the books should be in a place children can see them. The Pride Month book display was put on a table near the main entrance that is used to feature different book themes each month.
Library board chairman Joel Friddell said people started getting upset because the controversial materials were located next to the table for the child summer feeding program. Although, he said the books were all closed, and no one was directly encouraging the children to read them.
One participant in Wednesday's Maury County Board of Trustees meeting, Columbia, Tennessee resident Jessee Graham, made a passionate speech defending the banned books, the LGBTQ+ community, and the newly-resigned Library Director Zachary Fox. Dave Campbell of the Columbia Daily Herald explains:
Over the past few weeks, the topic of "age-inappropriate" gender books at the Maury County Library has called to the surface more than book content, but also a perceived attack on the LGBTQ+ community and their lifestyles, according to some residents.
On Wednesday, a crowd, including 20 speakers, crammed into the Tom Primm Commission Room for public comments at the Maury County Library Board meeting to discuss the issues in question.
A climactic heated moment occurred when Columbia resident Jessee Graham burst into emotional opposition before the local library leaders, defending the LGBTQ+ community and the books in question.
"Our town has never seen so much homophobic crap, as since Miller came along," Graham said. "They just want to exist, Aaron; leave them alone!"
Do yourself a favor and watch Jessee Graham's speech, described by the Tennessee Holler as, "local mom rips homophobe County Commissioner Aaron Miller, whose ignorant hate chased out the library director." Thank you, Jessee, for expressing all of the rage so many of us feel.