Court Ruling Limits Distribution and Sale Of Queer Book To Minors

A court has ruled in favor of parents and lawmakers seeking to make the explicit book, Gender Queer, harder to obtain by minors.

By Jessica Marie Baumgartner | Published

Students Across Virginia Walk Out Of Schools To Protest Governor’s LGBTQ Policy

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The debate over whether mature content in books should be allowed in schools serving minors has been settled in Virginia Beach. Two gender queer novels were brought into question by Virginia Republican congressional candidate, Tommy Altman. He argued that these obscene materials were allowed into public schools serving school-aged students and petitioned that parents should have a say in whether this should be allowed. The courts ruled in his favor and have deemed the content in question too “obscene” for minors. Altman stated, “This ruling will prevent any distribution of these books to children without parental consent; this includes public libraries, and bookstores.”

Gender Queer, A Memoir, was one of the graphic novels questioned. Although brought into public school libraries across the nation to promote equity and diversity, it depicts pornographic images where a man with an erect penis strokes another man’s penis, shows sex toys and describes orgasms, and displays images of oral sex and gay sex. Whether the content is appropriate for institutes of learning has come up in school board meetings, and led to much controversy.

The other book in question is the second title in a series, titled, A Court of Mist and Fury. It is listed as a sexually-explicit book on Goodreads because the book explicitly describes sex acts. Despite this, the novel has been allowed into public school libraries that serve 6th-grade students. Amazon lists it as a young-adult novel without any notification of the sexual nature of included content. The LGBTQ+ movement has decried criticism of gender queer books with sexually explicit material defending them as, “more than age-appropriate for any high school teenager who has already gone through their average public school sex education course.”

Herein lies the issue. Gender queer authors and activists are pressuring schools and liberals politicians to incorporate more sexual material into sexual education classes, and supporting sexualizing children before they are sexually mature. They believe that minors should be taught about explicit sex acts, be instructed on how to use sex toys, and be allowed to have permanent life-altering gender reassignment surgery before they are legally able to get a piercing or a tattoo. These individuals claim that removing books and graphic novels that depict mature content is bigotry and an attack on LGBTQ+ rights

Parents who oppose these ideologies and practices are often supporters of equal rights, but against sexualizing children before they are sexually mature. They do not wish for their pre-pubescent students to be allowed to read novels and graphic novels with illustrations that display minors or adults having sex or performing sex acts on each other. Unfortunately, because many public schools are being encouraged by the Biden Administration to honor the LGBTQ+ community’s movement and incorporate more gender queer materials to further “equity,” parents who wish to have the books in question removed have been vilified and denied. 

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Families that feel as if school boards have abandoned them and their children in the name of identity politics have had to turn to lawmakers, and political candidates who are running for office, to tackle this ongoing issue. Parental rights have been challenged time and time again, especially in regards to political bias being taught in the classroom — which includes gender queer material being promoted. School board election upsets have been witnessed across the country, and now that this lawsuit has offered parents more support, the hope is that more educators will return focus to the students and offer educational age-appropriate books instead of content that is brought in to solidify political ties.