This flyer was passed out in Saint Joseph’s Catholic Church on Easter Sunday, April 9, 2023.
A local blogger interviewed Salida Regional Library System Librarian Susan Matthews on April 12th.
“You don’t have to read it — you don’t have to check it out. But you can’t restrict the freedom of others just because you don’t like something”, said Susan Matthews.
Matthews said, “It’s against the library bill of rights, and it’s against democracy. Our point is the library is here to ensure the freedom of information and not everybody agrees with that. But it’s a First Amendment right.”
“Usually when people are trying to ban a book, the intention is they think they are helping somebody. But you don’t know what other people are going through,” said Matthews. “People see different things as controversial – our selection is not going to be chosen by the anticipated approval or disapproval of someone.”
Matthews agreed with the concept that the responsibility for the material that a child reads is up to the parent or legal guardian. “We aren’t their parent. What kids are reading in a book is so less offensive than what they can access on social media.”
Jimmy Sellars, co-owner of Partnership for Community Action, wrote this letter on April 13th calling for a counter rally to the Rosary Rally.
Dear Community Member,
A local group from St. Joseph Catholic Church is organizing a “Rosary Rally” in front of the Salida Regional Library and will also pray inside the library in an effort to rid the community of LGBTQ+ books. A Rosary Rally is a signature of the fringe Catholic group America Needs Fatima, one of the 50+ groups around the country organizing against LGBTQ+, Spanish language, anti-racism, etc. books and Drag Story Hours.
The flip side of the Rosary Rally includes a list of books deemed by the effort as “perversion that is being pushed into our nation’s children at their schools and libraries.”
Come take a stand with our Library and for our LGBTQ+ Community! 12:45 p.m. on Wednesday, April 19 at the Salida Regional Library, 4th and E Streets in Salida.
Signs will be provided, a sign-making station, snacks and drinks for those of you joining us during your lunch hour, books, flags, and activities. This gathering is to support the library, staff, and patrons and to stand against these harmful attacks directed at our LGBTQ+ members of the community!
Sign up here and join fellow community members in taking a stand on Wednesday, April 19 at 12:45 p.m. at Salida Regional Library. Youth are encouraged and welcome!
Please share. This is an important issue and many community members are affected and concerned. We appreciate your care and action in this matter.
Susan Matthews is again interviewed by a local blogger on April 14th.
“You don’t have to read it — you don’t have to check it out. But you can’t restrict the freedom of others just because you don’t like something,” said Salida Regional Library System Library Director Susan Matthews yesterday. She is planning a positive rally in support of the library at 12:45 on April 19.
The Humanists get involved.
“I personally will be standing in support of The Salida Regional Library and the LGBTQ+ community on April 19th,” wrote Central Colorado Humanists President Fran Rulon-Miller. “I hope to see others in our community show support for human rights and the availability of books on human sexuality, regardless of sexual orientation. If you can’t be there send me a good slogan for a sign.”
The blogger seeks to create division in the community.
“While shielded from outright comparisons to political activities, the broader strategy of these groups is clear; to cause dissent and chaos around cultural issues, driving divisions and positioning themselves and their “chosen” candidates for school board positions, Public Library Boards, and other local government leadership positions.”
The blogger compares the Rosary Rally to the burning of books by the Nazi’s.
"The Nazis used book burning to great effect in the build-up to World War II and the slaughter of millions of “certain types of people,” of which they did not approve. Many equate book banning to book burning. Media Matters for America was blunt in its assessment of book banning: “Banning and burning books is fascist.”
If you allow them to define you in these terms without responding, they are going to win the war of public opinion. It is that simple. Susan Mathews must answer this question: Is there anything so obscene she would ban children from having access?
Here is the sad thing: the way to counter their narrative is to do exactly what you do not want to do-show what is in these books which target children. Seeing is believing:
WARNING: Explicit material. Excerpts from “Gender Queer”
WARNING: Explicit material. Excerpts from “This Book Is Gay”
WARNING: Explicit material. Mother reads excerpt from book (All Boys Aren’t Blue) available in elementary school library includes sex scenes
Here’s a Library Director in Idaho claiming “there’s no pornography or obscenity in the library” – despite clear evidence.
He uses the American Library Association’s dishonest talking points to defend the obscene books and attack parents. Tells staff that the parents are simply “a politically motivated vocal minority.”
Library Director warns staff about MassResistance activism, attacks parents)
Mark Monroe, co-owner of PfCA, works at the Salida Library.
April 15th, at the 5:00pm mass, Father Jim cancels the Rosary Rally.
A local blogger writes, "In a message from Salida Regional Library Director Susan Matthews, she confirmed that the library will continue with the pop-up activities (Reading on the Lawn and Library Card sign-up) that had been planned for early afternoon, April 19. Her message noted that other community groups that had planned activities in support of the Salida Public Library are expecting to continue to hold their planned activities.
“I would like everything focused on the positive; how libraries are places of inclusiveness, we have materials for everyone, and focus on intellectual freedom,” said Matthews.
Doug, tells us not to typecast LGBTQ, but he typecasts Catholics. (April 18th letter to the Mountain Mail.)
Colorado Library Law requires the library to deny minors access to obscene material on the internet, but says nothing about obscene books.
Public libraries are required to adopt and enforce reasonable policies of internet safety that are consistent with the federal “Children’s Internet Protection Act”, that will protect children from access to harmful material without compromising responsible adult use of internet services in such libraries
Reverend James Williams of St. Joseph’s Parish responds in the April 21, 2023 Mountain Mail
A bulletin insert was routed within our church, which contained the following text:
“You are invited to a ‘Rosary Rally’ to bring public awareness to the perversion that is being pushed into our nation’s children at their schools and libraries.”
I stand by these words, even as I wish they were unnecessary. Based on these words, we were publicly excoriated for demanding book banning and book burning. These charges were never true.
If left to our own devices, we would have quietly held our Rosary Rally, stated our intention to make the world a safer, kinder place for children, and no one would have been the wiser. But someone saw fit to distribute this flyer widely outside the church, and a mob mentality took over. This congregation was
accused, tried and convicted in the blink of an eye. We were even labeled as Nazis. But what is the truth?
The Lord really does work in mysterious ways. The Rosary Rally goal was to “bring public awareness” to the issue of inappropriate materials in schools and libraries. It worked! This goal was fulfilled via a mechanism I never would have predicted, so we canceled the Rosary Rally. Whoever leaked this rally
flyer proved to be divinely guided.
The sting of condemnation we all felt was a small price to pay for the awareness that has been raised. I thank you all for the burden you have borne in the community. We stood falsely accused of targeting the LGBTQ+ community. Our goal was and is to protect all children from influences they are too young to understand.
But I find myself in an uncomfortable position. Many who condemn us have not seen the books at the heart of this matter. A strong stand requires knowledge of the subject matter.
For those who are willing, I suggest you seek out the explicit words and images from these books, so you can understand the full nature of the problem. But remember, like our children, once you see these images you can’t unsee them.
The practice of faith and religion is our First Amendment right as Americans. The Rosary Rally was for our parishioners and community members to gather and pray in peace and unity for their intentions. It was not meant to be a protest, and most certainly was not to show hatred toward any members of our
A great analogy is from a famous book called “The Hiding Place” by Corrie Ten Boom, a woman who heroically survived the World War IT holocaust. This would be a fantastic book to have our schoolchildren read.
From the wisdom of Corrie Ten Boom’s father:
“So the line had stuck in my head. ‘Sex,’ I was pretty sure, meant whether you were a boy or girl, and “sin” made Tante Jans very angry, but what the two together meant I could not imagine. And so,
seated next to Father in the train compartment, I suddenly asked, ‘Father, what is sexsin?’
“He turned to look at me, as he always did when answering a question, but to my surprise he said nothing. At last he stood up, lifted his traveling case from the rack over our heads, and set it on the
“Will you carry it off the train, Corrie?’ he said.
“I stood up and tugged at it. It was crammed with the watches and spare parts he had purchased that morning.
‘It’s too heavy,” I said.
“Yes,” he said. ‘And it would be a pretty poor father who would ask his little girl to carry such a load. It’s the same way, Corrie, with knowledge. Some knowledge is too heavy for children. When you are older and stronger you can bear it.
“For now you must trust me to carry it for you.”
Children today are carrying burdens that are way too heavy for them. If parents think their children are
mature enough for a subject, that should be the parent’s decision.
Having books available to parents in the adult section is one thing, but direct access for a child is too heavy. Children don’t see and feel the world the same way as adults.
Innocence is worth protecting, and worth fighting for.
Below are the books in question:
“All Boys Aren’t Blue” by George M. Johnson
“Two Boys Kissing” by David Levithan
“I Am Jazz” by Jessica Herthel
“This Book Is Gay” by Juno Dawson
“Gender Queer” by Maia Kobabe
“Our Work Is Everywhere” by Syan Rose
“The Nights of Luna” by Damjan Stanich
“Openly Straight” by Bill Konigsberg
“Annie on My Mind” by Nancy Garden
“Rainbow Boys” by Alex Sanchez
“If IT Was a Girl” by Meredith Russo
“Beautiful Music for Ugly Children” by Kirstin Cronn Mills
“The God Box” by Alex Sanchez
The Reverend James Williams is pastor of St. Joseph Catholic Church in Salida.
Liberals have opposed the bill by claiming that protecting children from sexually explicit materials is “censorship.”
Republican Rep. Vicky Steiner argued that “the media has been headlining this as ‘banning books.’ This bill is putting restrictions on pornographic children’s books currently being purchased by public libraries in taxpayer-funded buildings.”
North Dakota House Passes Ban on Sexually Explicit Books in Children’s Sections of Libraries | The Gateway Pundit | by Cassandra MacDonald
I absolutely support Father Jim. I am absolutely appalled that these bullys and the library would support child pornography is absolutely appalling. My two great great aunts were part of the 11 from the Tuesday Club in the 1890’s who brought a library to Salida and I am positive they did not foresee supporting child pornography. If the library wants child or any pornography in our library, then put it in an adult section where children cannot access it without parental consent. Being a 3rd generation from Salida I am so disappointed in what Salida has become.
I sent this opinion letter to the Mountain Mail but I doubt they will print it but we will see:
I’m appalled that someone brought in outsiders to our Salida Library last week to intimidate/bully our local citizens who were exercising their 1st amendment (religious) rights guaranteed by our U.S. Constitution. Shame on that person! Just because you don’t agree with them doesn’t give you the right to intimidate & bully them. And to bring in outsiders in support of child pornography (which even social media/television cannot air) is just plain disturbing. As adults, you certainly have a right to choose any life style you want but you have no right to expose/indoctorate children to sexual content. This is borderline Pedophilia.
I’m saddened that our Salida Library staff would even think it’s okay to set out child pornography books that children have access to. You want this kind of adult books in our Library, then put it in an adult section away from children. If parents want their children to see this, then THEY make the decision to show it to them, not council members (Bordelli , Papenfort and our mayor, Shore) who all seem to think it’s okay to undermine parents. Salida residents, please remember them come election time.
As parents, grandparents, and protectors of children we all should be asking who on the library staff made this decision and why! Many studies have been done over the years showing that exposing children and teens to pornography is unhealthy to their growth and mental stability. Just because these groups for child pornography say it’s okay, and call people who disagree with them trigger names, still does not make it okay. As parents and a community we need to step up and say NO MORE to protect our children. What happened to common sense that we, as a community, would even be having this ludicrous conversation of exposing our children to pornography!!
Two of my great great aunts were part of the 11 woman who formed the Tuesday Club back in the 1890’s to found a city library for Salida. I’m sure they would all be appalled at the decision this library staff made to having children have access to child pornography. Again, if this is what this staff wants, then make an adult section, put these child porn books there, away from the eyes of our children. Parents can them decide, NO ONE ELSE!
Salida citizens please join me in boycotting our Salida library until these pornography books are removed to an adult section where children cannot access them without their parents permission. No more book donations, no more children attending their programs and no longer going to the library. It’s sad that libraries can ban Dr. Seus, Bearenstein Bears, etc but allow child pornography!
Salida citizens, take this stand with me to protect our children/teens from this pedophilia! This is not hate and bigotry (not sure how trying to protect our children constitute hate and bigotry but that’s their trigger words). This is protecting children so they can stay innocent from someone’s agenda and ideals pushed on them.
Warning - explicit content the Salida Library thinks is suitable for children
Gender Queer: A Memoir
SHOCKING: Images from book ‘Gender Queer,’ which is stocked in school libraries across Iowa - The Iowa Standard
Here’s one of the books in an elementary school library being showcased (the porn graphic novel.) Normally, my line for banning things is really really high. But, I think one can reasonably call Lawn Boy and Gender Queer as normalizing pedophilia pornographic.
So my question is that obviously Susan and the library are not following the “Children’s Internet Protection Act” so how do we “make” the library follow it? How do we take this to the DA or who do we contact to make Susan step down?
I’m appalled that someone outside of our town can get people here to support him against child porn. Saddens my heart.