(UnitedVoice.com) – States and school boards across the country are implementing policies regarding books. They are trying to keep books that have been deemed inappropriate for children. At a recent board meeting in Alaska, officials got into an argument when a parent was attempting to speak.
On February 7, a father spoke out at an Anchorage School Board about a book children had access to in schools. The Daily Mail reported Jay McDonald took issue with “Let’s Talk About It,” a graphic novel by Erika Moen and Matthew Nolan. The book answers questions kids might have about sex, relationships, sexting, and other issues they might want to know about. It’s marketed towards teenagers ages 14 to 17.
When McDonald took the floor, he began reading passages from the book, including a section referring to nude photos as “naughty masterpieces.” Carl Jacobs, the school board’s vice president, stopped the dad from speaking halfway through his allotted time.
•Jay McDonald spoke about library books with a diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) agenda during Anchorage School Board meeting, held on February 7
•Upon being awarded the floor, the father read from a passage of one of the books recently added to https://t.co/MzKnKcE26p… https://t.co/EUhzqpjRwO
— Gabriel Comer (@ComerGabriel) February 17, 2023
Jacobs told McDonald that he would connect him to the superintendent so the dad could go through the appropriate channels to address the issue. The father responded that he would “appreciate it” if the official didn’t interrupt him while he was speaking. The board president told McDonald again that he would refer him to the superintendent. It’s unclear where the father obtained the book, as his children are homeschooled. He did not clarify whether any schools had that particular one on their shelves.
Another member of the board, Dave Donley, told the president the father hadn’t violated any rules. Jacobs said he could overrule him, but he believed McDonald should go through the appropriate channels already set up to deal with such a situation. Donley went on to appeal Jacobs’ ruling, another member seconded the motion, and it was taken to the entire board for a vote. The board voted 5-2 to uphold the president of the board’s decision to cut the father off.
Jacobs asked McDonald if he had any other comments. The father went on to object to other materials like that. He demanded to know if cutting him off was a First Amendment issue. McDonald said he felt the board was trying to hide the material the kids were exposed to in schools.
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