Book acknowledges existence of gay families — now banned by Erie, Illinois, school board!

One page in a book about families is causing an uproar in a Quad City area school district.

Back in May, the Erie School Community District banned, ‘The Family Book,’ because of a page that says “some families have two moms or two dads”. It was banned after parents complained to the school board. A predictable clot of Christian church-organized shock and awe.

Now, a national debate over diversity and freedom of speech has swelled over the Internet. 600 people have signed an online petition demanding that the school district reconsider the decision, with supporters coming from California to Florida. It came up on CNN, this morning.

Erie School District Superintendent Brad Cox says…”At our April board meeting, we had between 75 to 100 people show up, which is quite a few, and the vast majority who spoke at that board meeting spoke in opposition of the materials…”

“If you look at ‘The Family Book,’ you can tell it’s done for elementary age children. It’s a lot of colored pages, and one line sentences,” said Materials Selection Committee member Joe Weaver. “We found them to be appropriate for the setting they were being used,” he added.

But that conclusion failed to hold back a vocal majority faction opposed to the book…Supposing somehow that bigotry and ignorance democratically arrived at should be the rule.

The practice of banning books in schools is really nothing new. The Harry Potter books have been banned from some schools and the classic storybook, Grimm’s Fairy Tales, is banned from elementary schools across the country.

The author of The Family Book, Todd Parr, tells TV6 the book has been out for ten years and this is the first time there’s been any controversy.

The controversy is manufactured by Christian bigots who oppose even simple recognition that same-sex households exist. I couldn’t care less how much ignorance they force upon their own children – at home or church. But, the public school system should come up to a standard more demanding than fundamentalist superstition and fear.

It’s never a surprise when an elected school board or any other public body crumbles before a meeting packed with some sect or other. The city council in Santa Fe wasted years before allowing wifi to be installed in public libraries because of nutballs who showed up and whined about glowing in the dark from cellphone and internet radiation.

Crazies are mostly alike. Politicians are mostly alike. Their lives are driven by fear. In the case of public systems like education there are standards to be met, standards to be supported. Political cowardice has no place in that decision-making.

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