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Florida teachers will face felony charges for resisting book bans.

Jessie Gaynor

January 25, 2023, 11:51am

Florida—a state whose governor recently signed a book deal with HarperCollins’ Broadside Books—has, incredibly, descended even further into dystopia as HB 1467, a bill signed into law in March, went into effect. The law disallows teachers from making decisions about which books are appropriate for their students, and prohibits all books not deemed “free of pornography” and grade-level appropriate by a librarian or a “certified media specialist.” (Unfortunately, this might be the most respect Republicans have ever shown librarians.)

With the enactment of the bill, teachers in Manatee Country, Fl. were told that if they were found to be in violation of the law, they could face felony charges, leading some to cover up their classroom libraries rather than risk being charged with a literal felony. At a time when public schools are hemorrhaging teachers, this kind of cruelty is a special kind of tragedy. But as long as children are protected from, uh, having engaged teachers who aren’t living in fear of prosecution for doing their jobs, it’s all for the best.

In order to ensure that every book in every classroom complies with the law, Manatee County librarians will have to review each one (following the guidelines laid out by the state, which were, of course “heavily influenced by right-wing groups like Moms For Liberty”).

[h/t Popular Information]

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