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For Glenn Beck Fans, Freedom Is Gay Themed Book Banning?

Reported by Priscilla - August 7, 2010 -

Glenn Beck is continuously ranting about how the Obama administration represents a totalitarian system that is hell bent on taking away the freedoms of Americans. So it is rather ironic that a complaint from one of his fans, a member of his “9-12 Project,” would result in the removal of a book from the public library and the library of a high school in Burlington County New Jersey. It’s also ironic that Beck has compared the Obama administration to the Nazis (and was criticized by the ADL for that) as the Nazis had no problem banning books, as well as music, by Jews. So while Beck thinks that Democrats are trying to suppress our freedoms, his cult followers have no problem with suppressing books that they deem unsuitable – in this case a book about the experiences of gay teens. There’s even more irony in that Ray Bradbury, the author of “Farenheit 451,” a book about censorship, predicted a world in which television destroys interest in reading. Right wing TV guru, Glenn Beck, seems to have destroyed interest in thinking!

9-12’er and New Jersey mom (real housewives of NJ?), Beverly Marinelli, complained to the Burlington Country Library Director, Gail Sweet about "Revolutionary Voices: A Multicultural Queer Youth Anthology,” a collection of essays by LGBT teens – essays about LGBT identity that deal with the angst of being ostracized by an intolerant society and a book that was “named as one of the best adult books for high school students by the Journal in 2001” Marinelli said that the book is "pervasively vulgar, obscene, and inappropriate." Marinelli, who took part in a protest against the "indoctrination" of school children singing about Obama (Oh, the irony!), was inspired by the attacks on Obama’s openly gay Safe School Czar, Kevin Jennings, by the right wing blog “Gateway Pundit.” Sean Hannity and Andrew Breitbart also attacked Jennings on Hannity’s show. Scott Baker, of Breitbart TV, provided Gateway Pundit with information on books that were recommended by an education association which Jennings was connected to and which, according to the clean heterosexuals in the right wing, were part of a dirty, gay agenda and as such, unsuitable for a teen reading list. Young conservative Fox News writer, Maxim Lott, in smearing Jennings in an article on the Fox News website, referenced the Gateway Pundit information. So obviously the homophobic agitprop was effective as Marinelli was able to persuade the librarian to circumvent the formal process for handling such matters. As noted by the complicit Burlington Country Library Director, Gail Sweet, in e-mail exchanges with Marinelli, " ‘no official challenge’ was made, and ‘no actual vote by the commissioners’ was taken. She also said that “copies need to totally disappear.” In her e-mail exchange with Sweet, Marinelli linked to the Gateway Pundit articles that smeared Kevin Jennings. Also complicit in the book removal is library commission member Patrick Delaney who is also a member of Marinelli’s 9-12 group. In addition to supporting Sweet, he was able, as a member of the local Township Council, to persuade the school board to order the removal of the book from the Rancocas Valley Regional High School library. Marinelli failed in her attempt to get two other books, from the naughty book GSLEN book list, removed. . She has also lodged a complaint about the book in another local school district. She insists she's not a homophobe and she did this "for the children."

Comment: Beck exhorts his “9-12” “Constitutional Watchdogs” to “keep watch over the most perfect political document ever given to mankind.” That “perfect document” includes a First Amendment which, as demonstrated by this case, isn’t really respected. I guess in Glenn Beck’s “9-12” world, ignorant homophobia is a family value. Doesn’t it make you proud to live in Glenn Beck’s America. “What brave new world that hath such people in it.”