MADISON, Ala. (WHNT) — The Huntsville-Madison County Public Library system says an event hosted by Moms for Liberty is back on after a cancellation caused by capacity concerns led the group to accuse the library of censorship.
The library system announced Friday that after consultation with the group, the Madison Public Library will accommodate the event on Saturday with a limit of 225 attendees. The library said in the interest of public safety the Madison Police Department and the Madison Fire Marshall will be on hand during the event to manage any logistical needs.
Moms for Liberty is a nonprofit organization whose mission is “to organize, educate and empower parents to defend their parental rights at all levels of government,” according to their website.
The group’s Madison County Chapter planned to hold a Brave Books ‘See You at the Library’ event in a meeting room at the library with actor Kirk Cameron planning to attend. Yet, the library said that changed when there was a change in the expected number of attendees.
“Initially, the organizers of the event reported 20 attendees to library officials. On Tuesday, the Library learned that event organizers are now expecting over 300 people, a number that far exceeds any meeting room capacity within the Huntsville-Madison County Library System,” the library said in a statement on Thursday.
The library said it has now found a way to accommodate the event, though it is limiting the number of attendees to 225. News 19 has reached out to the library system asking for the details of its plan to handle the event but has yet to hear back as of this publication.
The initial cancellation caused Jeremy Dys with First Liberty Institute, a law firm that represents Brave Books and Cameron, to send a letter to the library Thursday, alleging the library is unlawfully and unconstitutionally censoring his clients.
The firm’s letter gave the library until noon on Friday to confirm that organizers would be able to use the Madison Public Library for the event, saying it was prepared to take up the matter in court if it did not.
“In short, whether over concerns of security or capacity, you have censored our
client,” Dys said. “It may be just one event—just a story time at the local library by a Christian
children’s book author—that you have canceled. Large or small, such unbridled
censorship impacts the freedom of speech upon which we all depend in this free society.”
The event is scheduled to take place on Saturday, August 5 at 10 a.m.