By: Joe Prendergast

UPDATE: The Mayor of Dixon, Liandro Arellano Jr, released this statement to YAF: “My first reaction upon seeing these graphic sexual images was to be very disturbed that the book was targeting minors. I immediately alerted our City Manager to the public concerns and added my concern to that as well. The library board has also been made aware of the issues and should be discussing them at tonight’s library board meeting. In Illinois the city does not have direct control of the library, but we do have an oversight role. I think parents and leaders need to work together and be vigilant in any city, and Dixon is no exception. I’m glad this was brought to our attention.” 

A graphic novel containing obscene images depicting oral sex was recently discovered in the Young Adult section of a public library in Dixon, Illinois, according to a tip received through Young America’s Foundation’s Campus Bias Tip Line.

Jill Hayes, a local mother, was visiting the Dixon Public Library with her one-year-old son when he accidentally knocked a book down to the floor.

Upon flipping through the book, and noticing its explicit sexual content, Hayes realized that the book had no place on the shelves of a section intended for children between the ages of twelve through seventeen.

In order to prevent children from being exposed to the pornographic material, Hayes decided to check the book out herself.

Further investigation revealed that another title in the Dixon Public Library “Patience & Esther: An Edwardian Romance,” by SW Searle, also contained explicit content that is inappropriate for minors. This book was displayed at the front desk of the library. While it says, “ADULTS ONLY” on the back cover (in relatively small print), it was within reach of children and is in a format that appeals to kids and teens (graphic novel).

The images inside the book are too graphic to include in this article.

“As a mother, I was appalled to find the graphic, vulgar content readily available to children of all ages in the public library. I will work hard to protect the innocence of my children and those in our community,” she wrote in a letter to the town’s mayor, Liandro Arellano, as well as the library’s board of directors.

Dixon Public Library and the Mayor of Dixon did not respond to YAF’s request for comment.

Some may expect that the charming small-town home of Ronald Reagan would protect its children from such perversities. Sadly, the widespread availability of disturbing sexual content aimed at minors in public libraries is no longer only a problem for big cities and the coastal elites.

Situations like this underscore the importance of YAF’s Long Game efforts to reach a younger audience and the expansion of YAF’s Midwest presence by establishing a Midwest office at the Ronald Reagan Boyhood Home in Dixon.

YAF will continue to work with students and parents nationwide to help them fight for the integrity and welfare of rising generations.