"Red States Threaten Librarians with Prison — As Blue States Work to Protect Them"

But the majority of the bills work the same way. They eliminate long-established exemptions from prosecution for librarians — sometimes teachers and museum employees, too — over obscene material. . . .

Removing the exemption means librarians, teachers and museum staffers could face years of imprisonment or tens of thousands in fines for giving out books deemed sexually explicit, obscene or "harmful" to minors. For example, an Arkansas measure passed last year says school and public librarians can be imprisoned for up to six years or fined $10,000 if they hand out obscene or harmful titles.

Seventeen states are weighing some version of this measure, The Post found. That comes after at least eight states enacted such laws between 2021 and last year, although two were later vetoed and one was blocked by the courts.

Includes detailed chart of bills proposed in 2024 that restrict or protect libraries.


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Author: Charles W. Bailey, Jr.

Charles W. Bailey, Jr.