Tuesday, August 24, 2021

Derrick Van Orden harassed a library page over LGBTQ books — but please, don't say he's "not inclusive..." 🙄

A Republican congressional candidate from western Wisconsin harassed a library worker in Prarie du Chien over a display of LGBTQ-friendly books in the children's section, then complained about the books possibly depicting Republicans as not being inclusive.

Throwing such a hissy-fit over these books, and checking them all out so that no one else can read them, however, suggests that Derrick Van Orden, the congressional candidate who made a scene at the Prairie du Chien Memorial Library in the first place, is not an "inclusive" GOPer.

Nenad Stojkovic/Flickr, with alterations

The Associated Press reports that the staffer had said Van Orden "complained loudly" about the display of books. He also filed a written complaint to the library over the inclusivity question.

According to the staffer, Van Orden's "voice was loud," and he was "aggressive" toward her. The staffer described herself as feeling "very uncomfortable" during the event, and Van Orden's actions as "threatening" in her mind. The library page — who was 17 at the time this incident happened, mind you — later told her parents she no longer felt safe at work.

From The AP:

Van Orden repeatedly demanded to know who set up the display so he could “teach them a lesson,” she said. She had set up the display but was too afraid of him to tell him, she said.

“He was full on shouting at this point and he kept aggressively shoving the books around,” she said.

I would say this is surprising and alarming behavior for any adult to take, except that this is Derrick Van Orden we're talking about — a man who was on the grounds of the Capitol complex in support of Donald Trump as a mob of loyalists to the former president sought to usurp the democratic will of the nation, and who exposed another man's genitals to two women without their consent.

Van Orden is running to become the next member of Congress for Wisconsin's third district. It would be a disgrace for him to win that race, a blemish on the state that would be hard to erase for years to come.

When it comes to Van Orden...let's just not, okay Wisconsin?