Two New Braunfels public libraries are being exposed for having sexually explicit books targeting children.
Joeylynn Mesaros, a mother from New Braunfels, shared with Texas Scorecard sexually explicit books she and other moms found in their local public libraries. The books were found in the early readers, juvenile, and youth sections of the libraries.
Mesaros was shocked to discover that most of these books were in a closed section of one library reserved for ages 13-18. According to the sign in front of the section, staff members can relocate adults from the area.
In the books shared by Mesaros, graphic images depicted masturbation and sexual acts. They also showed various pictures of “transgender” individuals naked—teaching children that it’s normal to use sterilizing puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones and remove healthy body parts.
One book, entitled ‘Sex is a Funny Word,’ shows images of various body parts and explains that touching those body parts “can feel good.” The book was labeled with a ‘J,’ meaning it was for juveniles.
Another book titled ‘You Do You’—labeled for Youth—had a section talking about “getting yourself off.” The book explains how to masturbate and why it’s the “safest form of sex” and doesn’t involve other people.
A book labeled for Youth called “Let’s Talk About It,” shows graphic images of naked bodies. It depicts people having sex, and gives children a step-by-step tutorial on how to masturbate.
“As a Christian woman, it’s hard to look at this stuff,” Mesaros told Texas Scorecard. “But if we’re ignoring that it’s there, then we’re ignoring the fact that our children are having to look at it.”
Mesaros also shared that sexually explicit books weren’t the only questionable materials found in the children’s section. Other books containing critical race theory, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion teachings, Black Lives Matter advocacy, and violence against conservatives were also in the children’s and youth section.
One book titled ‘Steal this Country’ by Alexandra Styron describes itself as “a handbook for resistance, persistence, and fixing everything” and explains ‘white privilege.’ The book claims that ‘white privilege’ is “being able to walk down the street without fear of harassment from cops or shop in a store without being the object of suspicion.” The author also asserts that white people are privileged in that they can commit acts of violence without being called terrorists.
Other books like: ‘We Can’t Breathe,’ ‘Unequal: A Story of America,’ and ‘Rise Up!: How You Can Join the Fight Against White Supremacy’ were also found in the children’s section.
Mesaros sent Texas Scorecard videos of the New Braunfels Mayor, Neal Linnartz, saying during a mayoral debate that while he believes in the First Amendment, sexually explicit books have no place in the library’s children section.
However, after his election, he walked back his statement at a city council meeting, saying that the “city council is not in the business of putting, picking, or placing library books” in the libraries.
Another local mom, Kassie Brown, said that when she brought these explicit books to the city council’s attention, the librarians laughed and rolled their eyes as she showed them the images in the book. The librarians also allegedly told Brown that the library is not a safe place for children.
“Ultimately the library is a place that should help change the trajectory of your life,” explained Brown. “Books are important and they should inspire you and help you learn things. Unfortunately, the books that they’re stacking on shelves now are harming our children.”
Randi Ceh, another mother in New Braunfels who helped Mesaros look through the books, told Texas Scorecard that although the material was dark, they are willing to “fight the fight.”
“We love our country and the children in this community and it is appalling that these types of books are being pushed onto the children. It is complete sexualization and they use Freedom of Speech to force it on us.” said Ceh.
“We had to pray intermittently during the scouring, because it is DARK what is in those books. I cannot even imagine what it is doing to the kids. We are willing to fight this fight until we get something done. Children are our next leaders, we need them to grow up healthy, not in a world of perversion,” she added.
Texas Scorecard reached out to Mayor Linnartz, but he has not responded to a request for comment.
Texas Scorecard also contacted the New Braunfels Library Director, Gretchen Pruett, and Youth Services Librarian, Whitney Hasler, but did not receive a response from either before publication.