In August, Rep. Jared Patterson (R-Frisco) filed official challenges against 28 books present in Frisco ISD’s library that allegedly contained sexually explicit content.
Among the most contentious nationwide, and included in this list, is a book called “All Boys Aren’t Blue” by George M. Johnson which contains sexually explicit content. In one section, the book includes a scene depicting graphic oral and homosexual sex.
“This was much more than losing my virginity,” an excerpt from the book reads. “For once, I was consenting to the sexual satisfaction of my body. This moment also confirmed that sex could look how I wanted it to look. And that it could be passionate and kind, but more importantly, fun and satisfying. His body felt great in my mouth.”
The book continues, “After a few minutes of fun and games, he got up and went to his nightstand, where he pulled out a condom and some lube. He then lay down on his stomach. I knew what I had to do even if I had never done it before. I had one point of reference, though, and that was the seven-plus years of watching pornography. Although the porn was heterosexual, it was enough of a reference point to get the job done.”
Another group of 11 books written by Ellen Hopkins contains sexual content and depictions of a methamphetamine addiction.
Out of the 28 books he challenged, many were not removed, including “All Boys Aren’t Blue.” None of Hopkins’ books were removed.
Only five total books out of the 28 formally challenged were deemed explicit and pulled from Frisco ISD high school libraries.
In an email to Patterson from Amanda Butler, chair of Frisco ISD’s “Reconsideration Committee” which was founded earlier this year following allegations of sexually explicit books, confirmed that “All Boys Aren’t Blue” was not deemed to be explicit.
She wrote to Patterson, “[‘All Boys Aren’t Blue’] prompted discussion, critical thinking and curiosity through clear and purposeful storytelling… [and] All literary elements…are interwoven to create a compelling story in an age appropriate manner.”
“As a result, the reconsideration committee recommends that Frisco ISD continue use of this library material as a resource,” she concludes.
Frisco ISD’s local school board policy for “Protection from Inappropriate Material” reads, “Library materials shall not include ‘harmful material’ as defined by Penal Code 43.24(a)(2) or ‘obscene’ material as defined by Penal Code 43.21(a)(1)(B).”
“Harmful material” is defined in Texas Penal Code 43.24 as material that, “appeals to the prurient interest of a minor, in sex, nudity, or excretion,” or “is patently offensive to prevailing standards in the adult community as a whole with respect to what is suitable for minors.”
Texas Penal Code 43.21 reads that “obscene material,” is material that, “the average person, applying contemporary community standards, would find that taken as a whole appeals to the prurient interest in sex,” and “depicts or describes patently offensive representations or descriptions of ultimate sexual acts, normal or perverted, actual or simulated, including sexual intercourse, sodomy, and sexual bestiality.”
Further, Frisco ISD’s book selection guidelines read, “Notwithstanding any other criteria, a title will be deselected if it contains obscene content.”
Responding to the possible violation of school district policy and penal code presented by “All Boys Aren’t Blue,” a spokeswoman for the district told The Texan, “Regarding your question about ‘All Boys Aren’t Blue’ and the definitions in Penal Code: The review committee determined that the book did not contain content that meets those definitions. There is an appeal process that the complainant can utilize should he disagree.”
Frisco ISD recently had a contentious school board meeting where parents provided heated testimony and reactions to the board’s discussion on various issues including the book review process.
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Hudson Callender is a reporter for The Texan and a lifelong resident of San Antonio, Texas. Hudson recently graduated cum laude from Trinity University with majors in Economics and Political Science, and loves to study ancient history. Hudson is also an avid mountaineer, backpacker, and paddler, often leading trips to remote wilderness areas. Outside of his love for nature, history, and Lone Star beer, Hudson spends his weekends arguing with his friends about football, and will always stick up for the Baylor Bears, Dallas Cowboys, and San Antonio Spurs.