Right wing attacks Downers Grove library’s support for LGBTQ community

Downers Grove Public Library. Photo from Facebook

The Downers Grove Public Library (DGPL) issued an open letter in support of the LGBTQ community and was promptly attacked for it by the far-right.

In the letter, the library reaffirmed its “commitment to standing in solidarity with the LGBTQ+ community” after the Club Q shooting.

“DGPL will continue to be a place for our LGBTQ+ community members to discover, grow, play and learn,” the letter read. “To our LGBTQ+ community members and staff, we will continue to celebrate your whole authentic self. We will continue to hold stories of your diverse experiences in our collection and advocate for your inclusion in our services and spaces.”

The library itself has been the target of anti-LGBTQ rhetoric. It was forced to cancel a planned drag queen bingo after receiving threats, including a bullet mailed to the library.

Awake, which gained attention for its opposition to drag both at the DGPL and a Lake in the Hills bakery, shared the letter in a tweet.

GOP Precinct Committeemen Terry Newsome told the right-wing Dupage Policy Journal that the threats “were not credible.”

Newsome also happened to be the subject of a recent article from the Southern Poverty Law Center. The longtime civil rights organization reported that he had taken part in anti-LGBTQ protests with the Proud Boys and is reportedly trying to organize a local chapter of anti-LGBTQ hate group MassResistance.

The Policy Journal itself is part of LGIS, a chain of Illinois websites that claim to be “local” outlets while printing far-right opinions as news. They returned to the public eye during the 2022 midterms for sending out print copies without noting they were political advertisements.