HENDERSONVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — Staff at the Hendersonville Public Library appear to be worried Tuesday’s bomb threat was not an isolated incident. Some wonder if their safety is at risk after facing weeks of allegations in conservative media outlets.
Hendersonville Mayor Jamie Clary has drawn a connection between the threat to bomb the library and kill everyone inside to Fox New’s coverage of a children’s story hour held at the end of February.
“If this continues, someone might get hurt,” wrote the library director in an email obtained by News 2.
He also wrote that there have been multiple threats to the library since the event, he wants an increased police presence at the library and is calling on the county lawyer to send a cease and desist letter to the event host.
The story hour was put on by Christian actor Kirk Cameron and his publishing company as part of the promotion of his new children’s book. The event, which also included appearances by other people like “Duck Dynasty” star Missy Robertson and former college swimmer Riley Gaines, drew hundreds of people and packed the library.
Two days before the event, the library posted a statement saying they were excited to host Cameron and his guests.
“We are working hard to ensure they have the platform to read their books and citizens have a comfortable venue to participate. Mayor Clary is working with our Hendersonville Police to ensure traffic and logistical issues are addressed,” the statement read.
After the event, Cameron claimed the Hendersonville Library didn’t want him there at first and there were “as kind as a hornet” to him.
He also claimed more than 50 libraries have not let him read his book there despite those same ones previously hosting drag queen story hours.
On social media, people from Middle Tennessee and across the country were calling for members of the library staff to be fired because of these claims of disrespect and allegations that the librarians suppressed Cameron’s First Amendment rights.
Both the Hendersonville and Sumner County Mayor took to Facebook to defend the library.
A post on Clary’s personal Facebook page reads, “The library staff has been vilified unfairly. Fox News, a national outlet with nobody in Hendersonville this past week, took a comment from the publishing company that was terribly inaccurate.”
No commissioners, library board members, or representatives from Cameron’s publishing group responded to requests for written comments or interviews.
Police say they are investigating the threat.