Court Says Texas Library Must Reinstate Books With "Butts and Farts”

When parents complained that the Llano County Public Library system showed “butts and farts” in their books, local officials instructed the library director to take the books off the shelves. Officials took it a step further, requesting that all books containing “pornographic filth” be removed. The list of offending titles included a book about a farting leprechaun, two books about the history of racism in the United States, and a book about puberty. A group of library patrons sued to reinstate the books, claiming the censorship violated the First Amendment. A district court sided with the patrons, ruling that government entities can’t just ban or censor books they disagree with and ordered that the books be returned to shelves within 24 hours. This isn’t the first absurd case of this nature. Last year, the Katy Independent School District removed books they said contained nudity and/or sexual themes, including No, David! and Are You There God, It’s Me, Margaret. The school district eventually backed down.