Christian Civil Liberties Union calls for book burning in Milwaukee

Here we go again. I think I’m becoming desensitized to these stories. I just can’t muster up the moral outrage like I used to. CNN reports:

The strife began in February when West Bend couple Jim and Ginny Maziarka objected to some of the content in the city library’s young-adult section. They later petitioned the library board to move any sexually explicit books — the definition of which would be debated — from the young-adult section to the adult section and to label them as sexually explicit.

Ginny Maziarka, 49, said the books in the section of the library aimed at children aged 12 to 18 included homosexual and heterosexual content she thought was inappropriate for youths.

She and her husband also asked the library to obtain books about homosexuality that affirmed heterosexuality, such as titles written by “ex-gays,” Maziarka said.

“All the books in the young-adult zone that deal with homosexuality are gay-affirming. That’s not balance,” she said.

So, fundie Christians are offended that books in a library say being gay is okay, and they call for the books to be removed from the library re-labeled as sexually explicit and moved to the adult section (thanks for the correction, WBCFSL and Frack). “Inappropriate for youths” they say. Apparently they don’t realize how hypocritical this is, considering all the violence, sex, and rape in their own holy book.

Censorship attempts like this are pretty typical, alas. As CNN noted, the American Library Association reports more than 500 such instances in the United States in 2008, mostly in schools and public libraries. But this story gets weirder:

Outside West Bend, the fight caught the attention of Robert Braun, who, with three other Milwaukee-area men, filed a claim against West Bend calling for one of the library’s books to be publicly burned, along with financial damages.

The four plaintiffs — who describe themselves as “elderly” in their complaint — claim their “mental and emotional well-being was damaged by [the] book at the library.”

The claim, unconnected to the Maziarkas, says the book “Baby Be-bop” — a fictional piece about a homosexual teenager — is “explicitly vulgar, racial and anti-Christian.”

Braun, who says he is president of a Milwaukee group called the Christian Civil Liberties Union, said he singled out the book because it “goes way over the line” with offensive language and descriptions of sex acts.

The call for burning the book showed his passion, Braun, 74, said. “I don’t sit on the fence when I do these things. When I make a decision to speak up on something, I go for it.”

The name “Christian Civil Liberties Union” is pretty hilarious, especially in this context. I think the phrase “civil liberties” doesn’t mean what they think it means.

Their case obviously isn’t going anywhere. They have no legal basis for their claim. Still, this story means that there are actually people out there who consider book burning to be defending the civil rights of Christians.

Also, here’s Ginny Maziarka’s blog. It’s hilarious, in a surely unintentional way.

About probabilityZero

I'm a rather boring, geeky college student. Most of my time is spent at a computer, reading a book, or sitting in (mostly uninteresting) classes. My hobbies include reading, blogging, creating and running websites, creating amateur video games, arguing incessantly on discussion forums, and buying books on because I'm too lazy to go to the library.
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5 Responses to Christian Civil Liberties Union calls for book burning in Milwaukee

  1. says:

    “and they call for the books to be removed from the library.”

    We do? Where?

    For the record, we do not agree with book banning or book burning.

  2. frack says:

    This is certainly an attempt at censorship, but the Maziarkas don’t appear to have literally asked the library to ban the book — they just want to force their morality on others and label the books as inappropriate. The Christian Civil Liberties Union is the one asking for book banning and burning.

  3. Thanks, both of you, for pointing out my error. I misread the source article. It has been fixed.

  4. Anonymous says:

    The argument that rape, murder and violence in the Bible is unwarrented as the Bible has been removed from most student libraries and if it is in a library it is in a seperate religious section, not the 12-18 area.

  5. Anonymous says:

    The book burning response is also unwarrented, there is obviously a genertional gap the man is 74 and asking for a book burning. Bad old school.

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