Friday, June 26, 2015

Gay Marriage and Gay Pride in Hillsborough County Public Libraries

In a long-sought victory for the gay rights movement, the Supreme Court ruled on June 26, 2015 that the Constitution guarantees a right to same-sex marriage.

Look how far we have come. 10 years ago Hillsborough county libraries could  have a book display during Gay Pride month.

A book display recognizing Gay and Lesbian Pride Month was taken down in June 2005  at West Gate Regional Library (Tampa-Hillsborough County Public Library System) after some library patrons complained. Hillsborough County Commissioner Ronda Storms spearheaded a resolution  to seek a county policy banning public library displays that promote Gay Pride and Lesbian Pride Month.

These are the books that were displayed:

  • My Father’s Scar by Michael Cart
  • Hello, I Lied by M.E. Kerr
  • Weetzie Bat by Francesca Lia Block
  • Girl Goddess, #9 by Francesca Lia Block
  • Talk To Me: Stories and a Novella by Carol Dines
  • Tomorrow Wendy: A Love Story by Shelley Stoehr
  • Breaking Boxes by A.M. Jenkins
  • My Heartbeat by Garret Freymann-Weyr
  • Empress of the World by Sara Ryan
  • Ironman by Chris Crutcher
  • Athletic Shorts by Chris Crutcher
  • The Shell House by Linda Newberry
  • A Face in Every Window by Han Nolan
  • Am I Blue? Coming Out from the Silence by Marion Diane Bauer
  • Alice on the Outside by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor
  • True Believer by Virginia Euewer Wolff
  • The Car by Gary Paulsen
  • Postcards from No Man’s Land by Aiden Chambers
  • Razzle by Ellen Wittlinger
  • Box Girl by Sarah Withrow
  • Eight Seconds by Jean Ferris

  • The Florida Library Association passed a resolution on July 21, 2005 not to hold any official meetings in Hillsborough County until commissioners rescind the policy.

    2nd anniversary read-in at July 5th, 2007 Bloomingdale Regional Public Library of the
    Tampa-Hillsborough County Public Library System  Valrico, Florida.

    On June 5, 2013  the resolution was repealed by the Hillsborough Board of County Commissioners. The 7-0 vote on Commissioner Kevin Beckner's proposal ends an eight-year ban on Hillsborough County recognizing gay pride or supporting related events. The decision was met with applause and a standing ovation from supporters in the audience at County Center.

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