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Committee denies request to remove gay documentary from Lafayette library

Lafayette library committee dvd.PNG
Posted at 8:14 AM, Mar 10, 2022

The latest challenge to content available at the Lafayette Public Library has been rejected.

On Wednesday night, a committee denied the request to remove a DVD called Scotty and the Secret History of Hollywood from library shelves.

It's a documentary about a gay escort in post World War II Hollywood.

The March 9 hearing was the third time since November that the library has considered a request to ban material from the system.

At the meeting, Kathy LaFleur revealed that she was the person who made the request for the DVD to be removed after she rented it from the library.

She addressed the committee saying she was appalled by some of the documentary's content and the DVD's presence at the library.

"When you're reading vulgarity in books, that's fine," said LaFleur. "But when you're watching something and you're seeing a clip of an actual video of this going on in a movie at a library, I just couldn't get over that."

Others in attendance said they were thankful for the committee's decision to not ban the documentary.

"I'm very thankful for the lack of motion today and the preservation of the documentary because I agree with everyone that spoke this far that access to knowledge is important," said Madison Price. "That's the entire point of the library."

This instance is just the latest episode in a debate over censorship at the Lafayette Public Library.

Read: Book about growing up queer will stay on Lafayette library's shelf

The library said it will continue to address concerns about material as needed.

"Anyone is welcome to request that we purchase books and anyone is welcome to suggest that we reconsider having a book on our shelves and there's process that they go to committee," said Library Director Danny Gillane. "If they don't like the committee's decision, they can appeal to the full board."

The committee considering the ban consisted of two librarians and one politically appointed board member.

Recently, the board voted to change how these bans are considered. Any future requests will considered by two political appointees and one librarian.

Some have voiced concerns that this change will inject politics into the decision making process.

Read more: Residents concerned Library board change could suppress knowledge

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