One of the Mat-Su’s most active and effective conservative activists is calling on parents and concerned community members to turn out for a Nov. 8 book challenge at the Menard Center in Wasilla.
On that day, Jackie Goforth will formally challenge the book, “Red Hood,” a sexually explicit book that is currently available in the teen section of the Wasilla Public Library.
The novel is filled with multiple erotic, and extremely detailed descriptions of various types of sex acts between teens.
Goforth hopes parents and others will turn out in droves for the 3 p.m. public hearing.
“I’m hoping to get as much community support as possible,” she said.
This past summer, Goforth was successful in getting the Willow Public Library to move a graphic LGBTQ sex book, “Let’s Talk About It,” from the teen section to the adult section. She said community support made all the difference is swaying the Mat-Su Borough’s Community Development Director Eric Phillips to relocate the book.
“Let’s Talk About It” has sparked heated controversy in Alaska and around the country, includes graphic advice on how minors can engage in anal sex, find their favorite internet porn stars, create sexy photos of their bodies to share online and explore myriad sexual fantasies and identities.
While Phillips sided with the Willow Library review board’s opinion that the book was suitable for teens, he ultimately agreed to remove it from that section.
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In a June 2 letter to Goforth, Phillips said he agreed with the library’s determination that “Let’s Talk About It” was not obscene and that it has “educational value for teens.” He also wrote that he thought the book was “properly placed” in the teen section.
Nevertheless, Phillips moved the book to the adult section due to the fact that many borough residents don’t support it being embedded in a youth section.
“In essence, the community standard may be that a majority of Borough residents do not think a 14 or 15-year-old should see some of the images or be exposed to certain aspects of human sexuality outlined in the book,” Phillips admitted. “I can understand that some people may have this viewpoint, and as a result we will move the book to the adult section in our libraries.”
Goforth is hoping for a similar result in challenging “Red Hood” on Nov. 8.
“If you can attend, or help get the word out, I’d forever be in your debt,” she wrote.
— The public book challenge hearing regarding the novel “Red Hood” will occur at 3 p.m. in the Menard Center (Room 3). The public is welcome to attend and show support for the book challenge, but comments will be limited to the challenger (patron) and the library staffer. The hearing is expected to last about 45 minutes.