This was posted in the exmo subreddit. Apparently mormons are stealing library books that paint the church in a negative light, and offering to replace them with pro-mormon materials. Pertinent quotes from the thread:
I was in the [Richland, Washington] library today trying to check out Beck’s book, ‘Leaving the Saints.’ I finally had to ask the librarian to go on a hunt, with it no-where to be found. It has disappeared just recently, after someone checked it out and returned it. She said that it happens all the time in that section. I mentioned how the missionaries have sometimes removed controversial books from libraries. Here, they come in all at once, up to 20 at a time, with regularity. I won’t look them in the eye, as they look around for prospects [to convert].The book is hold until after the first of the year, when the new budger kicks in and she can order another. So the Morg also steals from the tight library budgets, paid for by our property taxes. — Carol Y.
I can verify that one. I read several [anti-mormon books] that . . . magically “disappeared” when I went back months later to research. I reported them missing, and the librarian I reported to was so surprised that they were gone. — Devorah
This has been going on for at least 40 years that I know of. Cowardly, ain’t it? — Worldwatcher
The page she linked to has a section called Suppression and Book-burning, which quotes two church publications as implicitly or explicitly promoting members censoring so-called “anti” materials. Specifically, the quotes were:
“Now that we had these books which told the truth about their religion, undoubtedly we would like to discard other books in the library which told lies about the Mormon Church. Other libraries, they said, had been glad to have this pointed out to them.Following the expose . . . a friend of mine tried to find out how extensive the missionary book-burning campaign had been . . . Self-appointed Comstocks among us have for years been dedicated to the unholy quest of seeking out and destroying books considered unfavorable.” (Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought, Summer 1967, p. 26)
“Sven A. Winman . . . relates how when he returned home each evening from his part-time employment in various used books stores throughout Sweden, he would produce an anti-Mormon book and then proceed to burn it. Sweden, you learn, has literally no end of anti-church books, and Elder Wiman has set himself up as a one-man cleanup committee to destroy as many of these diatribes against the church as possible.” (Desert News, Church Section May 16, 1953, p. 10)
- What kind of selfish, self-involved, self-righteous jerk would intentionally steal from a library? It’s a library. You’re not just stealing from the building and/or collection, which would be bad enough, you are stealing from your community. You are stealing from every taxpayer in that community; from your neighbors and friends and fellow churchgoers.
- Wait — Richmond? Richmond, Washington? By the Tri-Cities? This is happening in my state? What? I would have maybe figured this could happen with the Utah or Idaho or maybe even Arizona Mormons, but Washington? What the eff?
- Hey, my sister lives near there! I wonder if she’s heard anything about this?
Of course, I’m kidding. I’m not advocating destroying books I disagree with in anyway. It’s true that if someone ever gave me the brain-cancer inducing ramblings of Glenn Beck, Stephenie Meyer, or Adoph Hitler, I would choose to put them to use in an either actual useful (storage) or aesthetically pleasing (artwork) way, but that’s me. If someone else chooses to read them and enjoy them, kudos to them.