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Letter to the Editor: Proponents of book-banning should consider more important issues facing students

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To the editor:

As a proud parent of two BGA students, I was both amused and saddened by the most recent dust-up about reading material in the curriculum. And while this digital age grants a voice to the most extreme, often unhinged opinions, I’m here to report at the local level that both boys are doing just fine.

They have not been indoctrinated, manipulated, made to suffer the horrors of pornography, exposed to the utter delinquency of the far left, stripped of their virtue, or even made to feel uncomfortable. On the contrary, the school has played a very significant and valuable role in the development of my kids. They are smart, articulate, thoughtful, sensitive young men who have been given the tools that they need to deal with difficult topics.

The notion that we should shield our children from the realities of the world is nonsense. Does it mean that we sit around the dinner table and talk about rape and incest and drag shows? No, it does not. But we could if we needed to and I don’t see anything wrong with that.

You know what does concern me? Vaping. Pregnancy. Suicide. Drugs, alcohol, teenage driving. These are real threats, but if you follow this pattern of logic about book-banning, maybe we should do away with awareness of these other topics as well. Because, they’re uncomfortable, are they not?

Some of the most important and lasting lessons that a child will learn are derived from the study of books. And more importantly, books that take a stance on something and seek to better communicate it so that a dialog will evolve as a result. I trust my kids to enter those discussions with a critical perspective — not just about what occurs in the text, but why it occurred and what it actually means in the real world, and in cases of violence and sexuality, how they might one day play a part in bringing about change, or enhanced tolerance, respectively. Aren’t those principles worth pursuing? And if they are, how do kids get there without perspective and constructive conversations?

For those who have no affiliation with my kids’ school, back off. You are uninformed and you are simply picking a fight for the exposure, and the nourishment for your own insatiable moral superiority complex. And for those BGA parents who sought outside counsel on how to turn the school’s curriculum into a three-ring circus, I think you know where the exits are. 

 Jim Cheney, Franklin

(1) comment


A+++. Thank you.

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