To be fair, I considered the possibility that other books with conservative viewpoints are available. With that in mind, I searched for books that might be an easier find in a school setting. I included the names of all Presidents and First Ladies from Biden all the way back to Bush Sr. This should offer a natural balance as these administrations alternate equally between Republican and Democrat with comparably prolific writers on each side, minus Joe Biden and Melania Trump.
Of all 232 books available with the name of a President or First Lady as the subject, 34% are Republican, 66% are Democrat.
I found that Trump, Bush and Bush Sr each wrote 2 books, Obama wrote 3 books and Clinton wrote 1 book. Of the 20 books available in WCS that were written by a President, 20% are Republican, 80% are Democrat.
Jill Biden wrote 2 books, Michelle Obama wrote 1 and Hillary Clinton wrote 2. Laura Bush and Barbara Bush each wrote 2. Of all 14 books available that were written by a First Lady, 29% are Republican, 71% are Democrat.
In 2022, I found similar results when I did a search that included Supreme Court Justices. At that time, I also found an interesting phenomenon worth noting: the newer the school in our district, the more progressive the library catalog. The newest school in the district has 74% of the extreme, sexually explicit books currently available. This is in contrast to 32% in our oldest school. My children are zoned for the newest high school so I reached out to the principal to get some answers. He informed me that the entire library catalog for that high school was chosen by him as a package offered by the Destiny Discover distributing company.
It appears our librarians can no longer afford to give publishers or distributing companies the benefit of the doubt. Just read the reviews of some of the reputable sources librarians currently use to purchase new books. Go to Common Sense Media, ALA: American Library Association Award Winners, Goodreads, Amazon Reviews, iPage from Ingram, Junior Library Guild, School Library Journal, Kirkus, Booklist, Horn Book, Publishers Weekly or Title Wave Follet Reviews, you won’t find any mention of graphic sexual descriptions for highly explicit books.
Moms for Liberty is often accused of starting a culture war but this silent conservative book ban suggests that the culture war started a long time ago and parents are only just getting started.
School libraries have undoubtedly allowed progressive orthodoxy to rule and reign. However, most districts should have a useful tool to push back against this. Policy 4.403 should have a stipulation about criteria and selection of materials for school media centers. In Wilson County, the board is supposed to seek a wide range of materials with diversity of appeal and the presentation of different points of view. This policy should cut both ways and justifies a balance of conservative viewpoints in all collections. Most districts restrict residents by only allowing parents, students or employees to discuss the matter of removal. However, our policy says residents can participate in the selection process.
Ask your school board representative what they plan to do about the silent book ban in Wilson County Schools.