On Nov. 10, a Flagler County school district administrator ordered all copies of George M. Johnson’s memoir-manifesto All Boys Aren’t Blue removed from circulation in all Flagler schools and their libraries, along with three other titles, pending a committee’s review.
The administrator was responding to Flagler County School Board member Jill Woolbright’s challenge of the books, and her filing a criminal report on Nov. 9 against Flagler Superintendent Cathy Mittelstadt. Woolbright, on no evidence, charged “it is a crime to have the book in the media centers,” and “because the superintendent has not notified the other school board members” of her complaint to Mittlestadt about the book days earlier, though the superintendent is under no obligation to make such a notification when a book is challenged. [FlaglerLive has purchased 15 copies of the hardbound edition of All Boys Aren’t Blue for free distribution to students. The books will be disseminated through Flagler Palm Coast High School student Jack Petocz–the only student censored at a school board meeting in recent memory: Janet McDonald, when she chaired the board, shut him down when he attempted to speak of McDonald’s Twitter account promoting misinformation and “homophobia, criticisms of the Black Lives Matter movement and activism,” among other bigotries. Additional copies will be made available if necessary.]
We contacted Johnson, who goes by the pronouns they/them, and they agreed to an extensive interview.
Farrar, Straus and Giroux published Johnson’s All Boys Aren’t Blue to near-universal acclaim in 2020. The memoir explores Johnson’s childhood and adolescence as a queer Black man growing up in Plainfield, N.J., in a household with a father who was a cop and a mother who headed the police department’s secretarial group. The book touches on family, racism, sexual identity, violence, traumas and various means of self-realization in lucid, direct and often witty prose. One of their intentions was to write the book they wish they’d been able to read in their adolescence.
“I wasn’t sure if this was my story to tell,” Johnson writes in the book’s introduction. “In writing this, though, I realized that I wasn’t just telling my story. I was telling the story of millions of queer people who never got a chance to tell theirs. This book became less about having the answers to everything, because I haven’t been through everything. It became less about being a guide and more about being the gateway for more people to find their truth and find their power to live in that truth.”
The New York Times called All Boys Aren’t Blue “an exuberant, unapologetic memoir infused with a deep but cleareyed love for its subjects.” Kirkus Review, ranking it among the best books of 2020, wrote: ” Those who see themselves outside the standpoint of being Black and queer are called in toward accountability, clarifying an understanding of the history, language, and actions needed to transform the world—not in pity for the oppressed but in the liberation of themselves. ”
The book has been named an Amazon Best Book of the Year, an American Library Association Rainbow List Pick, and a Best Book of 2020 by the New York Library, the Chicago Public Library and People Magazine, and was one of Publishers Weekly’s Anti-Racist Reading List Pick. For months, the book has also been a target of reactionary attacks, delisting, removals from libraries and outright bans. On Nov. 9, The Advocate cited Johnson’s tally that the book had been banned from libraries and schools in at least eight states. The bans have followed what appears to be an orchestrated pattern as individuals challenge the book either directly through administrators or by appearing at school board meetings, reading excerpts out of context, demanding that the book be removed, then banking on social media replications of their appearances. Complainers usually have not read the book, only its sexually explicit excerpts, which occur briefly in two chapters in a book of over 300 pages.
A district committee is expected to read the book and render a decision on its fate to Mittelstadt within 14 days, starting on Nov. 12.
The interview with Johnson, conducted today in writing by FlaglerLive Editor Pierre Tristam, follows in full it has only been edited for typographical consistency. The ellipses, when they appear, are Johnson’s, and not indications of deleted text.
You cannot be too surprised by the neo-puritan furies your book has stirred up in an age of intense reaction against LGBTQ gains, or are you?
I’m not surprised at all. I’ve been queer for a long time so this is not my first fight against the purity brigade. Before writing the book I had a meeting with my team and told them “at some point this book will be banned.” It happened a lot later than I thought it would, but I always knew this was coming. It’s partly why I was ready to respond as soon as this all started six weeks ago. As my ancestors say, “you don’t have to get ready if you stay ready.” and I stay ready.
It isn’t often that we see the word “manifesto” candidly attached to a title anymore. The word takes the memoir beyond literary intentions to outright activism. What is your goal with “All Boys Aren’t Blue,” and do the furies not play into your aims, now that many more people, especially in Flagler County, Fla., are discovering the book?
My ultimate goal for All Boys Aren’t Blue has never changed. The Toni Morrison quote is “if there is a book that you want to read and it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it.” So that’s what I did. I put a book in the world that would allow queer teens, specifically Black Queer teens know that someone existed in this world just like them and went through many of the obstacles so that they wouldn’t have to. Do the furies play into my aims? Not so much. The furies ultimately bring more awareness to the story, making it more visible for those who didn’t know it existed. But whether they occurred or not, the book was doing quite well on its own.
Is there an age below which you consider your book, or any book, inappropriate?
My book is specifically written for 14-18 year olds. For grade 10-12 level readers. I wouldn’t expect a 7 year old to be able to read my book and comprehend it because it wasn’t written with them in mind. The language used is likely above their reading level, so that’s not really the question at hand. I think the issue is, society has decided that certain topics–gender, sexuality, racism, etc. are too “heavy” for kids, despite the fact that kids can be experiencing those traumas from a very very young age. So this version of All Boys Aren’t Blue is for the age it is for. Doesn’t mean I can’t write another version of All Boys Aren’t Blue that covered all these same topics but in a language digestible to a 10 year old or 8 year old. [Little, Brown in September published Johnson’s second memoir, We Are Not Broken, a sequel to All Boys Aren’t Blue focusing on the grandmother who raised Johnson and three siblings. The book is for readers 9 years old and up.]
Is there a difference between pulling a book from school library shelves, as opposed to pulling it from instructional material for a particular class?
Absolutely. A library is owned by the public. One parent being upset about a book in the library they don’t want their child to read shouldn’t outweigh 99 parents who are okay with their children reading it. If your child still wants to read that book, that’s more of a discussion one needs to have with their child to explore why they may need that text. You can’t deny other kids’ right and agency because you feel you own your child’s agency. When it comes to curriculums, I’ve had parents tell the teacher they didn’t want their child reading the book. They assigned a different book to them. It was no problem with the other 18 students who read it, loved it, and talked to me about it. I was forced to read white books about white kids that had nothing to do with my life that were racist, homophobic and xenophobic. Where was this issue then?
We’ve never had a book challenged except briefly and unsuccessfully at a school level 20 years ago, and “To Kill a Mockingbird” was almost banned from the stage but ended up being performed. We now have at least four titles under challenge, yours among them, if by the same person (the prolifically unread Jill Woolbright). But they’re the same titles getting challenged simultaneously elsewhere. Can you place these challenges in context and venture an explanation as to the orchestration?
I think it’s two fold. I think some of the books being banned aren’t actually the target. These groups are thinking strategically, legally, knowing that if they only ban queer books they could run into issues with certain rights and protections of LGBTQ people. I say this because some of the other books being banned have no sex in them but may discuss race. But my book also discusses a lot of racism, yet…not a single peep about that being an issue in my book. America has had an issue with the truth. Following the last White House administration, the spinning of the truth and alternative facts reached a place where literature had enough and decided if you’re going to lie, we are going to tell the full truth. Many of us just decided to right all the wrongs of the fable that has been American History. And when whiteness feels it’s losing its grip (as they are demographics-wise) this is what they do.
The challenge to All Boys in Flagler, the claim that it is a “crime” to have it on the shelves, focuses on the book’s few depictions of sex as “pornographic” or “obscene.” The scenes are unquestionably explicit. But the writing is as if intentionally un-stylized, its deadpan directness–and humor–more similar to Maya Angelou’s matter-of-fact (if uncomprehending) description of her rape by Mr. Freeman when she was 9 than to anything remotely prurient. But while the question is unfair and absurd, it is also essential: To people who want your book banned, how do you explain the difference between the explicit and the prurient, between description and porn?
This is actually easy. Porn…is made…to be porn. A book that has sex in it or discusses sex doesn’t automatically become porn. If describing sex is porn, then so would any form of sex education, which typically shows pictures of genitalia. Even to explain abstinence, you have to explain what it isn’t. So the explanation of sex would still be considered porn under these terms. Sex is part of life. We hand a child a baby doll at age three, then refuse to explain to them how babies are made. If my book was erotica, the whole book would be that. My book has two chapters that discuss sexual experiences. Probably no more than 10 pages, total, of the 320 pages in the book. Furthermore, my chapters discuss consent, sexual abuse, and having agency to own your body and know what to do when you potentially experience trauma from sexual experiences. Porn is porn. Anything with a sex scene in it doesn’t become porn.
It’s ironic that the few parts of your books that have drawn objections are exclusively those parts that depict or allude to sexual acts, while the horrendous violence you describe in the very first chapter–violence against you as a five year old–seems to pass unnoticed. What explains the acceptance of brutality against children but the objection to sex–even affectionate sex–that you describe?
I think this speaks more to the fact that they didn’t read the book lmao. If they did, they would realize I also talk about former presidents being racists and rapists. I honestly don’t think that a single person making this objection has read the entire book. That is why they don’t know that I speak more about racism in the book than anything else. The book was on just about every major anti-racist list in 2020. They. Haven’t. Read. The. Book. So they don’t know those parts exist.
The obsessive focus on the book’s sexual scenes obviously misses the point–many points–of the memoir, not least of them the indictment of masculinity as something at times indistinguishable from violence, as you describe it in these lines to your cousin and abuser: “The same masculinity and manhood ideology that forced you and me to hide our identities is the same masculinity and manhood ideology that got you killed.” But why does masculinity as an issue in itself doesn’t seem to be on any diversity or sensitivity seminars’ radar, and how to discuss it without seeming “anti-male”?
Well masculinity isn’t going to be on those seminars in a man-dominated world. We literally have men making decisions on women’s bodies. I’m also not concerned about anything ever being anti-male. Men are conditioned to not be decent people. Boys are told not to cry, but then put their emotion into rage and violence. Boys are taught manhood comes through sexual conquest. From an early age they view woman as submissive and inferior. Taught to be violent towards queer people as queerness is seen as effeminate and anti masculine. I identify as non-binary now, but when people would say that “men are trash” or “men are horrible” and I identified as one, agreed. We are conditioned to be.
Curious that the word “miscegenation” was coined the year of the Emancipation Proclamation. From the Scottsboro Boys to Emmett Till to Trump wanting the death penalty for the Central Park Five, fear of Black sexuality, let alone non-binary sexuality, has been an American pathology. In light of the fear that your book is now eliciting in our own community, is it too simple, too absolving of broader responsibilities, to attribute the pathology only to white supremacy?
Absolutely not lol. You can tie everything in this country back to white supremacy. My ancestors who were brought from Africa had a different view on queerness. We had queer deities and several tribes didn’t even assign gender until years after birth, after they’d seen the child’s mannerisms and spirit. Sodomy laws started in Europe and were created by white folks. My people were indoctrinated into the whiteness that is America. We were conditioned this way through assimilation. I think we can say now that the breaking of the indoctrination has to be done and accountability has to be held to the individual as we now have resources, and language, to break it. But yes, the pathology has to be attributed to white supremacy because as much as they are denying our truth, they still are unwilling to tell their own despite what the facts show.
Your book is being reviewed by a school district committee, which will then render its recommendation to the superintendent on whether it stays on library shelves or not. The decision may be appealed to the school board. If you were to address both the committee and the school board about your book’s fate, what would you say?
The first thing I would say is to read the book. After that I would fully explain that no one has the right to deny one person’s access to a text because of someone else’s personal belief. The same way a vegan can’t deny others the right to eat meat or vice versa. If you don’t want to eat meat, don’t order the steak. But you don’t have the right to say others can’t order it. If you don’t want to read the book, don’t read it. If you don’t want your child to read it, that is a personal discussion you and your child need to have. But you don’t have the right to deny another child or parent a text they may need. Finally, I would tell them: Removing my book doesn’t mean that your child won’t still have experiences with the topics I discuss in my book. It simply means they won’t know how to deal with those situations when they happen. And you’ll have no one to blame but yourself.
I have purchased the book and will also be donating it to any student who wants it. Please show up to the school board meeting and let your voice be heard. Do not let these bigots win.
Tamara Megee says
I’ll be there! First the BLM text, then removing the word equity from the statement of goals to now filing charges and pulling books.
It’s painfully clear what’s going on. Infamous Flagler county- the last county in Florida to integrate- can add another distinction to its growing list of absurdities . We are now that county that filed a criminal complaint on an award winning LGBTQ book. The showmanship of these people here is as bold as those ‘peaceful Patriots’ and just as idiotic.
Ed Danko says
Here is a link to a video of a mother reading a passage from this disgusting book at a school board meeting. Thank you to school board member Jill Woolbright for standing up. No parent should want a minor reading this garbage. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N3HoWWAuHdI&ab_channel=MomsforLiberty
Pierre Tristam says
Here’s the disingenuous Ed Danko, VP of the local pussy-grabbing club, acting like the censoring, anti-democratic ass he is, at a council meeting. Obscenity from the dais:
And here he is lying about, slandering and defaming a young adult and her mother (the former
mayor) for political gain:
Of course he’d applaud Jill Woolbright. Homophobes attract. Anything less would be like Paul falling off his ass on the road to Damascus.
Keep it coming Pierre!!! says
Pierre… you’re an amazing journalist! Not only do you tell the truth, even if it means butt hurting the many close minded ignorant individuals that have infested this county we live in, but you back it up with fact checking references.
Another question is, are these not the same individuals crying 😢 and screaming recently about a “parents right to choose” what they want or not want for their children? Parents also have a right to “chose” wether they want their child to read this book or not. They do not need the “government”overstepping” and making choices for them. This only comes to justify what they have been proving all along, laws are only good when it agrees with their ignorant beliefs.
Deborah Coffey says
This was an excellent interview, Pierre. It’s getting harder and harder to deal with these bigoted morons and, even harder to love anything at all about them. But, we can’t give up! Hate is hate; love is love. Love wins every time.
I had the opportunity to watch and interview with George M Johnson yesterday. What a kind, well read, intelligent and decent person. They are inclusive and they deeply care that not a single child struggling with their identity feels alone in their quest for understanding.
On the other hand, I have watched the disgusting and obnoxious behavior of Ed Danko at council meetings and campaign events. He has lied to his community and slandered at least one other local politician. He prefers a WWE style of governance rather than decorum and collaboration. He is the last person that should be taking a moral or ethical stand on anything.
If I have a choice of who I want my child to emulate, its George M. Johnson.
Everyone is up in arms about the violent outbursts our children have been demonstrating in school. Lots of hand wringing and pearl clutching…”How did this happen? Where did they learn this?”
Take a look at Danko and the culture he perpetuates. There’s your answer.
Flagler County Parent says
I went to FPCHS in the ’90’s. I remember a classmate of mine, an incredibly intelligent young woman with fantastic grades, grinning and telling me about one of the books from an honors English class reading list. She had chosen Lady Chatterly’s Lover. There was the whole rest of the book, of course, just like this book, and yet the thrusting sex scene in this “classic novel,” never entered the sphere of parental rage. I think parents are not actually reading any of these books, or we’d been spending so many more days asking for book bans upon more book bans.
Also, the link provided by Council Member Danko is of a mother asking for this book to be removed from an elementary school. The author claims that this particular book was not written for elementary students.
It’s a memoir of someone’s lived experience. Why do you want to erase that? The Diary of Anne Frank was a memoir with some tough truths too. What is it you’re so afraid of? If parents don’t want to let their kids read this or any other content that’s outside their own experience, they can certainly control that, right? Book banning controversies nearly always backfire.
Courtney VandeBunte says
If these parents do not wish for their children to have access to these books, which are appropriately placed according to the publishers recommendations for age range, then there are policies that can be followed to prevent their students from accessing them. Instead of permanently banning important works of literature, policies such as allowing a parent to block their student’s access to book rental unless they have special permission, can be put into place. This way, parents can censor their own students and not other people’s students. The books that people are trying to ban provide unique and important perspectives and experiences that offer strong literary value. By banning these books, you are silencing the voices and experiences of marginalized groups, however painful and uncomfortable those experiences may be. Their experiences deserve to be shared, whether I, or you, can relate to them or not, so students who’ve experienced similar things, whether it be sexual assault, violence, racism, homophobia, xenophobia, etc., can find meaning from them, or so that students who are blissfully unaware of such hard truths can learn what the world is like for people who are different from them.
Extremely well stated, and the reason that you should be on the school board as opposed to Woolbright or McDonald.
The dude says
Liddle Ed Danko the lying lawn troll in the flesh!!!
Always lurking, yet acting like he could care less about Flaglerlive.
We know better, don’t we?
Grow a set Ed, quit stalking.
Maybe you and Pierre could do a debate or something?
I mean if you’d be willing to exit your MAGA bubble and actually participate in an public exchange of ideas… like in a democracy… which is what our founders intended…
Bill C says
Great idea! Danko doesn’t have the courage to debate, only the depravity to slander others behind their backs.
Concerned Citizen says
I have a major problem with elected officials misusing their power. And ones that tell lies to get elected (Ed Danko)
Mrs.Woolbright circumvented rules and procedures. Then tried to involve Law Enforcement to accomplish her goals. Once people get a taste of taking things from people it generally doesn’t stop there.
Our elected officials just can’t seem to grab the basic concept of following the rules like the rest of us.
We need to watch this one closely. And stand up to her.
Figures, you being queer, would buy books on being queer, and give them out to students. I have NO issues with anyone being queer, but keep it to your self. Don’t promote that your mentally sick. Maybe we should look for books about Charles Manson, and promote the terrible things he did. He also is mentally sick.
Pierre Tristam says
Dennis, if you’re referring to me being queer, I can only wish. It’d have saved me a heap of embarrassment and shame for having to sexually identify with the likes of you, assuming you’re not desperately exhibiting the asphyxia of the closet you’re hiding in, which your homicidal (and psychiatrically defunct, Saudi Arabia, Iran and China aside) equivalence suggests you are.
Laugh my ass off
The dude says
You DO seem somewhat fixated on that particular body part for some reason… just sayin’…
Flagler County Parent says
Wow. Thank you for this!!! I like the vegan analogy. Having this literature available requires parental involvement. What are our kids reading and interested in, and what conversations can we have about these things? We need to be able to explore our humanity and ask questions and see each other where we are at a given moment.
Timothy Patrick Welch says
Thanks for the info,
My heart goes out to those struggling with these issues, and to their families.
Carol B says
Thank you for providing a wonderful interview & counterpoint to this “banning lunacy”. Also, thanks for making this book available to students who may want to read it.
Here ya go kids:
All Boys Aren’t Blue: A Memoir-Manifesto Kindle Edition
by George M. Johnson (Author) Format: Kindle Edition
4.7 out of 5 stars 1,543 ratings
#1 Best Seller in Teen & Young Adult Social Activists Biography eBooks
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Christopher Goodfellow says
Excellent interview Pierre and I admire your initiative in going directly to the well for an interview while this issue is facing the community. I can also recommend the NPR interview in May 2020 when the book first came out which I posted a link to yesterday on my FB page.
I will repeat my comments which I posted on FB yesterday below:
Protecting Young Minds
It appears Flagler County has made national news and for all the wrong reasons once again. The old canard of censorship raised its ugly head this week when one member of the School Board apparently so incensed by a recently published book – All Boys aren’t Blue – that, I understand, she even took it upon herself to request the Sheriff’s Department to look into whether a criminal act was committed by permitting this book to be available at several school libraries.
This sure caught my eye for a couple of reasons. Censorship of a nationally acclaimed book as being “pornographic” and, by chance, I had listened to the interview given by the author and subject of the book George Johnson in may, 2020 on NPR (Interview: George M. Johnson, Author Of ‘All Boys Aren’t Blue’ : NPR) and I remember muttering to myself at the time finally Americans may get it that what is really lacking in the public school system is good and open sex education.
Most other countries have progressed much further in public school sex education which has had many beneficial impacts on society among them being lower teen pregnancy, a reduction in misogyny, a reduction in bullying, a greater respect for each other and healthier families. One of Mr. Johnson’s main messages was “give them the information”.
Discussing sex is still very much taboo in America despite the fact we are the major purveyor of pornography – both sexual pornography and the pornography of violence – to the world. The Moms for Liberty might be better served by directing their ire at Hollywood for this and the pervasive daily violence children are exposed to on television almost from infancy rather than targeting a book, which although controversial, recounts the real reality of one man’s personal journey. Our children are going to get the information whether we like it or not on the internet where perhaps it is far more dangerous and salacious than this book itself. The whole world of video games is far more sexual and violent than anything in this book. I doubt many parents have any idea of what their children are looking at on the internet which is far easier today to go for information than actually checking a book out of the library.
With that said, censorship rarely works and maybe we should learn from our experience with book bans of the past like To Kill a Mockingbird, Lady Chatterly’s Love, Catcher in The Rye. Those books were banned in my day and I read them all in my early teens. I have to thank my mother for this who encouraged me to read widely on many subjects once I graduated from The Hardy Boys. I think I have mentioned before in other writings that much of my world view and openness to other cultures was stimulated by reading James Michener’s books. Whether it was Caravans, The Source, Poland, Mexico or The Drifters, I learned early about other cultures and that is the most important gift you can give your child today. I shudder when I see interviews where American teens cannot even find countries on a map or have little comprehension how the rest of the world lives.
The answer for all parents today is open and frank discussion of everything sexual with your children. They should feel utterly comfortable and free discussing sexuality with you. Whether they are getting it from makeup ads targeting and sexualizing 8 year olds or TV programs featuring gay, lesbian or trans sexual persons, you are in a competition for your childrens’ minds. Ignoring uncomfortable subjects especially about sex will distance you from your child. Trying to control sexual behavior will likely lead to rebellion. Our worldviews are formed in our teens when we begin to break the bonds with our parents and begin to explore life as independent persons and develop as adults under the influence of peer pressure. No matter how much a parent may try to retard this break, control it or even censor it, as in this case, it is inevitable. We all grow up. The important thing is we all grow up with a healthy attitude towards sexuality whatever that may be.
Jill Woolbright has every right to file a complaint, I just hope the good Sheriff has the good sense to let this hot potato cool before making criminal charges. By all means I am in agreement with banning overt and salacious pornography from school libraries but does a book openly discussed on NPR meet this test? Or is it a subject matter you may have personal objection to or feel uncomfortable with? Or is this just a settling of accounts between her and other school board members? Hard to tell.
In any event Jill should be smart enough to realize that a lot more kids will read it now on the net that she has made such a controversy over it.
He wrote a book, many awards. As a parent I will not let my child the book, can I honestly stop him? Is Jill mad because an African wrote a book that won a few awards? If he were white would she behave the same way? A person said in the comments that they were a Christian, I can’t dispute that. Sex between a male and female is what God intended to happen I totally agree. Did Christians exist in this country during the age of lynching? It is said by white male preachers that this country was founded on GODLY PRINCIPLES. Was it? A Christian should stand for right regardless of the time wrong happens. Was this country founded on Biblical principles or were the White Male Preachers wrong? From the history of this country I think they are wrong. Black folk continue to write, start businesses, get degrees, when a Jill try to stop you just laugh at her and keep marching.
Florida Girl says
In a world where any one can independently publish a book and call themselves an author. This author and his work were published by a publication house. AND with this comment coming from a bisexual woman with interracial grandchildren who also happens to firmly believe to racist people, everything is about, race. When the race card comes up, it tells me everything I need to know, and I kindly step around it. Myself being in Flagler County for the last fifty years, I know only too well the racist in this county. Although I do hear that race card thrown around a lot, my grandchildren have yet to experience racism. I know one day they might come up against it. I did/do not discuss my sexuality with my grandchildren either. When my children were old enough to ask, I gave the information, freely. I do not live a closet lifestyle. Furthermore, I read the excerpts from this gentlemen’s works. I have yet to read all of it. Excerpts are released to draw in your targeted audience. All this controversy will be driving the authors sales/royalties up. I am a published author. I wrote my books for the SAME reasons. A fourteen-year-old could pick up my work and read it from cover to cover. So could someone a hundred-years-old and carry the message. I touch on, addiction, incest, and rape – along with recovery, and redemption, understanding and even forgiveness, all of it bound between my front and back cover. Some of my grandsons would have had access to this man’s book at school. I don’t feel like I need a “how to” guide to teach them about any kind of sexuality. OR how to cope with being a gay, black teen/man. I feel like I need to say, my grandchildren have not read my own books, yet. My children have. AND with ALL that in my comment, a few things I can tell anyone reading for certain. Many found my work profoundly healing. They found understanding in self, family, and community. Meaning, even though I cannot identify as a gay, black, teen – I can for certain have empathy and understanding. Instead of disgust, judgement, and anger, or accusations of perversions. Angry people want you to know how powerful they are. Loving people want you to know how powerful you are. Is it possible that he is a “loving” author? Is he not a giving artist? Although I don’t think my own children would reach for this book today. What if I was wrong about that? How about those children that take their own lives because they can’t live with what comes from, self? OR they believe from those around them that what is coming from self is an abomination of sorts. From what I understand he has a targeted age/grade, being 9th grade and up. I am totally okay with that, even though I don’t “think” my OWN will reach for it, today. There you go Flaglerlive, my two cents worth of a ramble.
Mondexian Mama says
What happened to “Let the parents decide what they think is best for their child”? Or does that only apply to wearing masks in school. Perhaps Ms Woolbright and her neo-fascist pals should read the bible to get a dose of some real depravity. If they want to ban books in school, the Bible should be the first one to go. Perhaps they forgot that religion ruled the dark ages.
Reading, Writing, Arithmetic…
Ahhhh. . . Lashing out and name calling= the actions of those who are so “ignorant” they have no intelligent words with which to debate. Yes, that means you Dennis and Danko. . . two absolute pariahs in our community!
No. Just a God fearing Christian that thinks sex is between a man and a women. Dont try to lead our youths against right and wrong.
Your god isn’t everyone else’s god. That’s why the first amendment exists. Stop preaching from a book you clearly don’t understand.
This isn’t a coincidence, just like making Superman gay, it’s an on going attempt the destroy the family time unit, which liberals hate the most
So glad we live in a majority Republican county. This is no end to the sickness known as liberlaism they came for kids , fetuses and everyone else’s Money.
Ed Stanko will have to take the reader’s word for it, since we all know he reads on a second grade level at best.
Parents want this book banned because a black queer man wrote about his life. Period. The cancel culture crew, the same people screaming about making their own choices, are trying to dictate the choices of others. Color me shocked. I read IT, by Stephen King when I was in 10th grade. That was far more explicit than this book but then again, IT was just a bunch of white kids taking a girls virginity during an orgy and dealing with a viscously murderous clown. That’s no where near as horrific as a black queer man and his true life story to “these” people.
The race card again says
Someones always got to make stuff about race!
@ Dennis. . . should I not be leading our youths against wrong? Really? Or. . . should I not be leading them against right?
Thanks so very much for proving my point! Lovely!
Concerned Citizen says
Anyone remember a certain country back in the day that had issues with books?
Then started banning said books and burning them?By passing any rules and laws in place? Using governmental agencies to accomplish that task? We need to watch Mrs. Woolbright and Ed Danko very closely.
Swastikas aren’t always visibly worn.
Well I am not going to judge any of the people who has commented on this. all I have to say is that one day everyone will stand before God and they will have to answer to him. What you do in darkness Jesus will bring to the light.
The hypocrites are on full display in the comments section- all up in arms about stifling freedoms of reading for young adults and reference to Germany, etc and “give them the information” …YET I’d venture they fully support censoring /stifling opposing content on social media, college campuses, main stream media etc…the intellects spouting freedom- lol
Concerned Citizen says
I’m against any cencorship. But understand that certain content is meant for certain audience.
The government already has enough over reach into our daily lives. Now you have someone wanting to control access to reading material. And is willing to use Law Enforcement to accomplish her goal. And it’s not just this topic that has been targeted. How many other literary classics have been targeted?
Myt sole issue is one person here misusing her authority. And breaking rules to do it. Who is the hypocrite then?
In this past 18 months as a gay white male never have I experienced so much racism directed towards me from the black community and Homophobia and hate from the gay community for believing in God and voting for Trump. Everyone’s experience is different. People in my community that want new gender pronouns don’t want equality, they want to be treated special and want to hold it as a weapon to use against anyone they perceive as an enemy. They get to this conclusion by not being addressed by the pronouns that they designate for themselves that nobody, but their misguided woke culture even care to address. By the way 90% of the Asian hate crimes in Los Angeles are being perpetrated by the black community. 13% of the population, 100% of their own problem… Joy Reid, LeBron, Whoopi, and Don Lon just a few examples of the vicious kind of racism being perpetrated by the black community on society… So the authors needs his narrative to sell books I get it, but if society is so racist against him, how come he’s such a successful victim? I remember when they wouldn’t allow The Front Runner in schools because of the sexual nature of the book. That was so racist against white love. See anybody can be a victim.. I know maybe grow the F*** up.
Why did you change the article? You said before that you bought 15 copies of the book to be handed out by a student at a school. Why would you take that out? Did it pose a problem?
Pierre Tristam says
I’m not sure what article you’re looking at but as far as the book donation is concerned, it’s right there in the second paragraphs, and you can see a picture of the package as it was delivered, along with man, many others, right here, and now that a few days have passed and several people at the school board meeting suggested I should be arrested for that, I’ll make it clearer: I’ll either buy or organize a fund-raising drive to buy any book banned from Flagler schools, in very large quantities, and ensure that those who want them get them free of charge, as they would at a library.