Updated: Oct 13, 2022
On Monday night, 17-year-old Lauren Grant addressed the Goshen School Board:
"Grant told the board that as a minor [emphasis added], she’s concerned about the direction of the upcoming election. “Students are worried that there is a faction of our community running for the school board that is intent on removing what we need to be successful,” she added. “They have no students enrolled in our schools, have an outdated mindset, and frankly, do not understand what students are concerned about. Am I to believe that the contents of a book — which I have read and found to be completely relevant to the struggles of today’s youth — should take precedence over my safety as a student?” A few weeks ago, Roeder’s conversations with the board surrounding a series of books he and other parents found to be controversial ended following a determination by the board that the books did not hold controversial material. The books were “The Infinite Moment of Us,” by Lauren Myracle, and “The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-time Indian,” by Sherman Alexie." - The Goshen News
"What does it profit a man if he gain the world and lose his soul?" The school board is not to take its direction from students. Students are in the school to learn from adults, not the other way around. While student engagement is helpful, they are not the standard by which the schools operate. The contents of books do have relevance to the safety of students, and removing bad books does not harm students or lessen their physical safety. These are not mutually exclusive.
In the quote above, the article points out that Lauren is a minor. She says she has read the books and found them completely relevant. The school board determined that the books did not hold controversial material. So, I will quote from one of them:
"Did Wren want to have s** with Charlie? Definitely. It was hard to talk about, that's all. Tessa had had s** for the first time when she was sixteen, and since then she'd had s** with two other boyfriends before P.G. And yes, Tessa and P.G. were now having s** ("And it is sooooo good," Tessa raved, which brought Tessa's count up to four. That was a lot of s**, Wren thought. "Have you at least touched his d*** yet?" Tessa said. Wren squeezed shut her eyes. "Tessa!" Oh my G**, Wren. That poor guy must have the worst case of b*** b**** ever.""Not helping, Tesseract," Wren said. She peeked at Tessa through half-opened lids. "I want to. I want to do everything. I just...don't know how." "Dude. Lady. You just do it!" Tessa said. She handed Wren a water bottle full of "special" lemonade. Enough lemonade to make it taste good, but definitely lots of "special." "Here," she said. "Drink." Wren obeyed. The late-afternoon sun felt wonderful on her skin. The sun plus the vodka in the lemonade, plus Tessa's questions... She thought of Charlie's strong chest. His forearms. His kind auburn eyes. She felt tingly, and she draped one foot off the hammock and pushed against the ground. "S** is a basic human drive, Wren," Tessa said. "And you know what else? It's fun, especially with the right guy."..... She took another swig of the lemonade for courage. "Yes, I wan to have s** with Charlie. I even" -- she stopped breathing -- went on the pill." ....."Are you kidding? Wren! Yay!" -“The Infinite Moment of Us,” by Lauren Myracle, pgs. 153-155.
Truth is very clear and unforgiving. Is this what we want our young people reading and doing? Drinking and sleeping around? It is shameful and harmful to our youth, our families, and society. The fact that our teens are reading this material is all the more reason we should not let them decide what is ok literature and why adults should not be allowed to provide this literature to minors.
Vote Ryan Glick for Goshen School Board District 1 on Nov. 8.