With respect to personal lives, an issue that came up during these events was my status as a mother. It was discussed in many conversations by the complainants about my ability and qualifications for my profession if I had not experienced motherhood. I was told several times that I could not understand the situation or its importance because I did not have children, specifically daughters. I often felt I had to defend myself and my personal life, not only my status as a parent, but also my age and my faith. I was told a good Christian would not want to expose smut to innocent minds. It was implied that I couldn’t have a sound religious faith while espousing an appreciation for contemporary YA literature and proudly defending our country’s First Amendment and every citizen’s—including teenagers’—right to read.
Kristin Pekoll, YA librarian at West Bend Community Memorial Library (regarding the censorship attempts earlier this year), in the October 2009 issue of VOYA.
I would think it’s the other way around. Parents have trouble seeing their kids as ever being sexual people, so they gasp in horror if their teenagers want to read books about sex or sexuality. Cooler heads might see that every teenager thinks about sex, and it’s ridiculous to pretend you can “protect” them from it forever.
And the idea that a woman who went to graduate school in order to become a librarian, and who has been working in that capacity for seven years, doesn’t know how to do her job because she’s not a mother? The sexist implications are staggering. Apparently parenthood is now a requirement for any and all jobs that involve working with children. Or maybe just for the women.
But then again, what do I know? I’m not a mother.