". . . and having done all . . . stand firm." Eph. 6:13


Nothing to See Here: Ohio Library Covertly Creates LGBT Section Targeting Minors

June 22, 2022

Portsmouth, Ohio seems an unlikely site for a culture war. But the rural town of 18,000, nestled on the rolling banks of the Ohio River, has seen the child’s section of its public library set up a display featuring books normalizing the LGBTQ message for children as young as two years old.

Among the books in the Portsmouth Public Library’s display was “Being You: A First Conversation About Gender,” which tells children aged 2-5, “It’s okay to wonder: Am I a girl? Am I a boy? Am I both? Am I neither?” One of its illustrations depicts two young children expressing gender confusion. “I’m trans!” says a girl; “I’m an in-betweener!” says another child, while an adult or older teen states, “Today I feel like a boy.”

Another book titled “The Every Body Book: The LGBTQ+ Inclusive Guide for Kids about Sex, Gender, Bodies, and Families” informs 8- to 12-year-olds that “people of any gender with any genitals can have sex together.” The book depicts a pregnant “man,” two boys in bed together, and two girls kissing, according to the Scioto County Daily News. “It is normal if you want to masturbate,” the book says.

“We’re talking about obvious grooming. There’s no doubt that there’s an attempt to indoctrinate the youngest of our children and our community,” Scioto County Commissioner Bryan Davis, who also pastors a local church, told “Washington Watch with Tony Perkins” on Monday. “These children need to be given the opportunity to grow, and they need to be given the opportunity to live their young lives, and not to have this confusion introduced into their lives at such a young age.”

“We are a rural community, and unfortunately, there is a very small segment of individuals who are driving this, mostly employees within the library system,” he explained. Davis said the taxpayer-funded library began setting out controversial or sexually charged books “during the COVID crisis, during the time when really no one was there to see and be held accountable.” Their actions went unnoticed for three years.

The library board’s monthly meeting on Tuesday drew a crowd of 40 to 50 people, who came to discuss the display. The board put off taking any action until next month, pending “an investigation,” said Tim Throckmorton, the national director of Family Research Council’s community impact teams, on Tuesday’s episode.

But the display is not currently functional, since area pastors checked out every book it contained, said Throckmorton — something Perkins called “an interesting tactic.”

Portsmouth has become habituated to roiling cultural issues in recent years. Four years ago, Shawnee State University, a taxpayer-funded institution, forced philosophy professor Nicholas Meriwether to call a student who identified as transgender by pronouns of the opposite sex. Administrators said their free-speech crackdown “protects students” by creating a “discrimination-free learning environment.”

When the university settled Meriwether’s lawsuit for $400,000 in April, the administration accused those who oppose its policy of politicizing the case. “[W]e adamantly deny that anyone at Shawnee State deprived Dr. Meriwether of his free speech rights or his rights to freely exercise his religion,” an official statement asserted. “Over the course of this lawsuit, it became clear that the case was being used to advance divisive social and political agendas at a cost to the university and its students.” The money, the university said, could be better spent.

The county may wish to take a similar approach to other pro-LGBTQIA+ undertakings that take away time from academics. The state rated Portsmouth City Schools as a “challenged district” and earned a “D” on the state’s Performance Index Score ratings, which measures students’ test scores. 

Tuesday’s library board meeting showed which side of the battle had been educated in biblical wisdom, said Throckmorton. The display’s defenders were “focusing on feelings” and “quoting President Biden’s recent address,” while those who held “the biblical worldview had a focus on the true issue, which was the indoctrination that was taking place and children that were coming into the library.” Ultimately, only adopting a biblical worldview can help people see the issue — and its solution — clearly.

“We are dealing with a spiritual battle here,” said Davis.

Ohio residents may politely contact:
Portsmouth Public Library
1220 Gallia Street
Portsmouth, OH 45662
(740) 354-5688
Online contact form

Ben Johnson is senior reporter and editor at The Washington Stand.