A man who has burned LGBTQ-themed library books in a Facebook video says the “shameful and wicked” literature should not be read to children.
Paul Dorr, director of the Iowa-based Christian group Rescue the Perishing, which is followed by 77 individuals on Facebook, burned the Orange City Public Library books in the video, posted Friday. The act was in protest of the annual OC Pride, a weekend of drag shows, yoga, storytelling, and dance performances, which took place that day.
Orange City is in one of the most conservative counties in Iowa, reports the Sioux County Daily News, and is also “a fantastic place to call home,” according to OC Pride spokesperson Mike Goll.
In the video, Dorr reads from a blog post titled, “May God And The Homosexuals of OC Pride Please Forgive Us!,” blaming feminism, Hollywood, basketball, money, and sex-ed for “destroying children.” He then burned the books in a trash can.
“I have checked out, from the Orange City Library, several of the books targeting 4- and 5-year olds, which the drag queens will likely be reading to children here in Orange City this evening,” says Dorr. “These copies, owned by the city of Orange City, Iowa, will not be part of those they get to read, as I am going to do what the German church leaders should have done in 1933. I am now going to burn these copies.”
A representative from the Orange City Police Department could not be reached for comment by Yahoo Lifestyle and the American Civil Liberties Union of Iowa did not return Yahoo Lifestyle’s request for comment.
OC Pride sent a statement to Yahoo Lifestyle: “OC Pride is aware of what happened, however, our goal is to remain focused on creating a healthy, loving environment for the LGBTQ+ of the community. It is disappointing to see folks break the law in a community where we believe abiding by the law keeps everyone safe. We are thankful for the LGBTQ+ community here in NW Iowa for setting a positive example of building community in light of those who do violent, illegal things to prove a point. OC Pride is committed to creating safe, supportive, and encouraging spaces & events for the local, rural LGBTQ+ community of NW Iowa. We would encourage you to reach out to the Orange City city council and the Orange City Police Department concerning the destruction of city property.”
A spokesperson from the Orange City Public Library declined to speak to Yahoo Lifestyle, however, library director Amanda Vazquez told the Des Moines Register that upon learning of the video, the library “alerted the board” and called law enforcement to discuss potential legal action against Dorr.
According to the Des Moines Register, a petition was created in February to separate and label LGBTQ books at the library “so each patron can make a conscious and informed decision about the materials to be checked out.” The library responded by reorganizing books by subject, rather than by writers’ names. The Hill reported that some the books Dorr burned were included in the petition.
Dorr did not reply to Yahoo Lifestyle’s request for comment.
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