An Alabama lawmaker who sought to ban gay marriages now wants to ban novels with gay characters from public libraries, including university libraries.
A bill by Rep. Gerald Allen, R-Cottondale, would prohibit the use of public funds for "the purchase of textbooks or library materials that recognize or promote homosexuality as an acceptable lifestyle." Allen said he filed the bill to protect children from the "homosexual agenda."
"Our culture, how we know it today, is under attack from every angle," Allen said in a press conference Tuesday.
Allen said that if his bill passes, novels with gay protagonists and college textbooks that suggest homosexuality is natural would have to be removed from library shelves and destroyed.
"I guess we dig a big hole and dump them in and bury them," he said….
When asked about Tennessee Williams' southern classic "Cat On A Hot Tin Roof," Allen said the play probably couldn't be performed by university theater groups.
The obvious wisecracks involve historical novels ("Better burn that one; it's about Tchaikovsky"), but what I want to know is this: What will Allen do about books whose homosexual content is a matter of academic dispute? Is Billy Budd banned? What about The Merchant of Venice? And let's not forget my contrarian readings of Treasure Island and Green Eggs and Ham—they haven't caught on yet, but give them time…