ala is big contributor to public library internet porn problem
for this reason society requires that the education of youth should be watched with the most scrupulous attention. education is a great measurer, forms the moral character of men and morals are the basis of government. noah webster, 1758-1843
this is a letter to the 'letters and opinion editor' of the washington times on march 26, 1999. it was in response to a letter from ann k. symons, president, ala, published that same day.
once again the american library association is refusing to accept responsibility for their share of the child endangerment situation now in public libraries across the country due to the ala's irresponsible public policy effort regarding internet access. in her march 26th letter ("parents, not filters, are the best internet blockers"), president ann k. symons claims "we encourage local libraries to adopt internet use policies that protect both children and first amendment rights."
the hypocrisy of her statement vs. the ala actions is infuriating. ala is very much a part of the internet pornography and child endangerment problem. after telling the supreme court that the cda was unnecessary because of available blocking technology, they now threaten libraries and librarians with professional censure for choosing that same technology for their community systems.
recent widespread complaints from librarians themselves (see david burt's "dangerous access" report http://www.filteringfacts.org/ --) prove that so-called "acceptable use policies" ms. symons hawks are irresponsibly failing to protect even accompanied minors from online smut and smut-surfing library patrons who now flock to public libraries, and children's sections, as never before. there pedophiles especially have found fertile turf for their sick habits because of libraries' irrational fear of using today's improved technology, even for kids. even where libraries offer some filtered machines, minors are frequently allowed to use unfiltered machines anyway. parental permission is seldom required. that's because the ala big brother political machine is a rabid promoter of the absurd twisting of the first amendment to include children's "rights" to access "erotica" if their fragile young libidos so desire.
for direct proof of the ala's irresponsible attitude toward sex and children check their "top" 20-some recommended web-sites for "young adults" (that's age 12-18 in ala-speak) which includes columbia university's "go ask alice." their archival searches easily lead to the sick-humor promotion of sex with animals ("animals don't kiss and tell") and the tasty joys of oral sex using only chocolate, honey or whipped creme as a cover-up. (see "minefields in cyberspace" on the ffl website at http://www.fflibraries.org/ )
librarians have also reported to family friendly libraries and to filtering facts in increasing numbers that their work environment has become unconscionably sexually hostile due to the growing crowd of porn-addicted patrons (some audibly moaning at their machines). they're expected to handle these leering men without complaint unlike any other professionals working in this title vii era of frequent feminist litigation. but they're afraid to complain openly because of threats of career endangerment from ala agenda promoters. so much for an organization that still pretends to look out for the welfare of library professionals and their "intellectual freedom."
the ala, in fact, works closely and vigorously on a national scale with the aclu to discourage every policy effort that local citizens and library boards attempt to protect their resident women and children, including the librarians, from cyberporn harassment and endangerment. their latest target at the federal level was the carefully crafted child online protection act which simply asked for commercial pornographers to drop free cyberporn teasers and require proof of age before doing business with a cyber-surfer. it should surprise no one that the ala, like the aclu, receives hefty contributions from the pornography industry.
last year, ms. symons herself served as a juror on the playboy foundation's (hugh m. hefner's) award committee. are those great credentials for advising the public on internet porn or what!
although some categories of pornography are already illegal and not included in first amendment protections, the ala leadership refuses to change it's electronic bill of rights that currently supports no-access limits, "regardless of the user's age or the content of the material." at president clinton's 1998 online child safety conference, ala spokeswoman judith krug refused to recommend a change from that no-holds-barred position, even for illegal obscenity and child pornography. that absurdity continues today.
i suspect the real reason for the ala's so-called cooperative meeting with technology vendors was not to be more helpful to parents, but simply because of all their own pr problems growing from this record of shameful support for the smut industry. burt's "dangerous access" report and similar revelations of other responsible child-protection activists have exposed ala leaders for what they truly are - friends of pornographers and not friends of the family.
a young mind is a terrible thing to molest. ala should stop hob-nobbing with the likes of mr. hefner and start sharing the load with the rest of the village trying valiantly to protect children from the harms of online pornography.