Barnes & Noble removes man from children’s books section

Tuesday, June 5, 2012 3:34 PM

Arizona doc accepts Barnes & Noble’s apology after being bounced for being in kid’s section

By Cristina Corbin | June 05, 2012 |

The Arizona doctor who was thrown out of a Barnes & Noble bookstore because he was alone in the children’s section said he accepts the company’s apology and just wants “my life back.”

Dr. Omar Amin, 73, of Scottsdale, said he was shopping for books for his grandchildren at his neighborhood bookstore May 4 when he was bounced simply because he was not accompanied by a child. After initially defending its handling of the matter, the company issued a statement apologizing to Amin. Although Amin was still stinging from the incident, he told he is closing the book on the matter.

“I’m losing my privacy,” Amin said, a day after the incident made national headlines. “I’ve been bombarded with calls. I just need my privacy and my life back.

“I have accepted the apology, and I’m not pursuing it,” he told

Amin said he wound up in the reading area of the children’s section after he received a call on his cellphone. He said the area appeared to be empty, and he went there to avoid disturbing other customers.

“This man approached me and asked if I was in the store by myself,” Amin explained. “He said ‘You cannot stay. This is not an area where men are allowed to be by themselves.’

“I did not break any rules,” he said, adding that he was “firmly escorted out” of the store. “If that is Barnes & Noble’s policy, they should put up a sign saying men are not allowed beyond this point unless they are with children.”

Amin, who emigrated from Egypt 45 years ago and is a U.S. citizen, said he was told a female customer had complained about his presence in the children’s section, and said the employee who threw him out cited reports of alleged child molestation in other bookstores. Amin told he believes his civil rights were violated.

The Arizona Republic identified the Barnes & Noble employee as Todd Voris.

In a statement released to on Tuesday, Barnes & Noble vice president Mark Bottini said, “We want to apologize to Dr. Amin for a situation in which Dr. Amin was asked to leave the children’s section of our Scottsdale, Ariz., store.”

“We should not have done so,” Bottini said. “It is not our policy to ask customers to leave any section of our stores without justification. We value Dr. Amin as a customer and look forward to welcoming him in any of our stores.”

Bottini’s apology came after the company released a statement last week, saying it had “acted appropriately” in removing Amin from the store, according to the Arizona Republic.

The exact details of the woman’s complaint are not known, but reports of alleged child molestation over the past year in libraries in the state may have prompted her concern. A 31-year-old registered sex offender, for instance, was arrested in February for allegedly preying on young girls at a library in nearby Phoenix. Officer David Pubins of the Scottsdale Police Department told he did not know of any similar recent incidents in Scottsdale.

“People should not always bury their instincts,” Dr. Keith Ablow, a Fox News contributor, said of the controversy.

“Like it or not, most child abductors and sexual predators are male. While many people object to profiling anyone, a man who frequents the children’s section of a bookstore alone is worth a second look,” he said, though he noted, “I’m not aware this man was a frequent customer.”


About Male Matters USA

See About the Author
This entry was posted in World of Children/World of Work and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Barnes & Noble removes man from children’s books section

  1. It appears to me that this website doesnt load up on the Motorola Droid. Are other folks obtaining the precise same problem? I enjoy this web site and dont want to have to skip it when Im away from my computer.


  2. cedric says:

    Actually, most child abductors, and molesters, are people known to the child, and usually someone from their family or close circle of adult friends/guardians. Don’t let statistics get in the way of a good rant, though.


    • Yes, I believe most child abductors and molesters are people known to the victims, but we’re talking about stereotypes, common beliefs about a group of people: what seems true about the group gets applied to all individuals within that group.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s