The Brooklyn Public Library provided a great public service when it offered free access to books that have been banned by states and school districts, either online or in audio form.

Unfortunately, an Oklahoma high school teacher who shared the code to the Brooklyn Public Library’s open access program was promptly punished.

Vice reported:

Summer Boismier was removed from the classroom after the first day of school last month, when she covered her bookshelves with butcher paper and posted the QR code on the covering. Oklahoma, like many Republican-controlled states, passed a law last year banning the teaching of “critical race theory” in public school classrooms. 

Boismier, who is currently a doctoral student at the University of Oklahoma, was offered her job back but ultimately chose to resign. Boismier told VICE News that there were “some fundamental ideological differences” between herself and the district, and that the new Oklahoma law “created an impossible working environment for teachers and a devastating learning environment for students.” 

Boismier did tell VICE News, however, that she planned to keep teaching. But on Wednesday, Oklahoma Education Secretary Ryan Walters—an official in Gov. Kevin Stitt’s cabinet, who’s likely to become the state’s next superintendent of schools after the November midterms—called for the Oklahoma State Board of Education to revoke Boismier’s teaching license. 

“There is no place for a teacher with a liberal political agenda in the classroom,” Walters said in a letter directed to the state Board of Education. “Ms. Boismier’s providing access to banned and pornographic material to students is unacceptable and we must ensure she doesn’t go to another district and do the same thing.” 

“Teachers are one of our state’s greatest assets and it is unfortunate that one of them has caused such harm and shame for the entire profession,” Walters said. 

Republicans have frequently claimed the books they’re banning are “pornographic” in nature, though the nonprofit Oklahoma news outlet The Frontier reported earlier this year that the dozens of books being investigated by the Oklahoma Attorney General’s office include “Of Mice and Men” and “Lord of the Flies,” as well as books that explore topics of sexual and gender identity and racism.

But in an interview last week, Boismier said that “parents are being manipulated” by Oklahoma Republicans. “I’ve been called an indoctrinator, a woke leftist, a groomer, a pedophile, all within the last several months,” she told VICE News. 

“They don’t want these conversations happening,” Boismier said of Republicans seeking to ban books. “They don’t want critical thinkers, they want American exceptionalism and this whitewashed version of history that does not require them to interrogate their own privilege.”

“That’s dangerous when you’re the one in charge.”

Understand that what legislators call Critical Race Theory has nothing to do with the graduate courses taught in law school. They have no idea what CRT really is. What they mean by CRT is any teaching about racism, past or present. Presumably, everyone will be happier and more unified if we pretend that things like slavery, lynching, segregation, and other racist practices happened in the past and that there are structural aspects to racism today (read Richard Rothstein’s “The Color of Law” to learn more). Similarly issues about gender identity will simply fade away if we pretend they don’t exist.

This is what happens when ignorant and bigoted people are elected to positions of authority.