Monday, November 23, 2009

Iowa Library Defies Parents to Keep Sex in Library

A teen sex magazine will stay on the shelves at the Ames Public Library despite a petition signed by more than 100 parents objecting to the publication.

-- From "Teen Sex Magazine to Stay on Shelves at Iowa Library" Associated Press 11/22/09

The Ames Library Board voted 6-1 to support library Director Art Weeks' recommendation to keep the magazine Sex, Etc., in the teen section.

From "Trustees to decide fate of Sex, Etc." by Jennifer Meyer, Staff Writer, The Tribune (Ames, Iowa) 11/18/09

Joyce Bannantine presented a petition with 118 signatures to the Library Board of Trustees last month objecting to the open display in the teen area and offering free copies of the magazine Sex, Etc.

The magazine is written for teens by teens under the oversight of Answer, a national sexuality organization at Rutgers University.

“We get this journal Sex, Etc. to provide authoritative information that teens would likely be curious about,” Library Director Art Weeks said.

Sex, Etc. is displayed in a stand with about a dozen other magazines. Teens can also take home for free one of the 10 extra copies the library subscribes to for $15.

“Kids might not intuitively surmise that we have this information, so we wanted to make sure to communicate to them, ‘Yes, this information is available here,’” Weeks said. “The other thing is that this is a topic they may not always feel comfortable going to the librarian or information desk and requesting information, so we make it available for them to get without having an adult intermediary.”

. . . an article describing lesbian sex, for example, may be “putting ideas into their heads that some of them may not have even thought about yet. And then, whoa, this is being thrown at them” by displaying it where teens who are not actively seeking that information might find it, Bannantine said.

Weeks recommended to the Library Board of Trustees to continue its display and distribution of Sex, Etc. based on principals of the American Library Association and Ames library to promote access without age restrictions.

To read the entire article, CLICK HERE.