Texas Karen Call The Cops For A Gay Graphic Novel

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A police officer in Katy, Texas recently removed a copy of Mike Curato Flamea gay YA graphic novel, from a high school library shelf in the small town near Houston.

And then he put it back.

The school district kerfuffle was initiated by Karen, a local book ban, who remains anonymous.

The woman claimed that the coming-of-age story, with an editor’s recommended reading age of 14+ or under adult direction, was “pornographic” and “harmful” to children. minors.

According to a police report from the Katy Independent School District, a woman’s case began on July 21 when she arrived at police headquarters (school districts in Texas maintain their own police forces).

She complained that Katy ISD violated Texas Penal Code 43.24, which “prohibits the sale, distribution, or display of material harmful to minors”, because the book was available in high school libraries.

The woman said she had previously filed complaints about the book with the school district, but was unhappy with the outcome.

She wanted to speak to a manager.

Curato’s Flame is a semi-autobiographical story about a boy navigating between friendship and bullying at summer camp. It won the 2021 Lambda Literary Prize for Children’s and Young Adult Literature and made the Texas Library Association’s own 2021 Texas Maverick Graphic Novels Reading List, among many other accolades.

The book had already been reviewed by a school district committee in March and deemed appropriate for high school students.

According to the police report, the woman said her complaint came from Katy’s Jordan High School, but the book was also at other high schools, so she wanted to “extend the grievance” to the entire district.

“According to Governor Abbott and the TEA, the ‘Flamer’ book should have been removed from the shelves of the KISD Library, but it remains there,” the woman said in a follow-up email to police. “The KISD police report will be sent to the Texas Rangers office.”

According to Maria Corrales DiPetta, the district’s general manager of media relations, that’s when a Katy ISD agent “checked” the book as part of the investigation.

The school principal “explained that when ‘Flamer’ was first complained about on [sic]it was removed from school library shelves, reviewed, permanently removed from junior high libraries, and then returned to high school libraries after being deemed appropriate for high school,” the police report states.

A district assistant superintendent provided the review process materials.

Katy ISD Police found Karen’s allegation “unsubstantiated”.

“The book has undergone several review processes by the district, including one with a committee of librarians, parents, and teachers, and deemed appropriate for high school libraries,” the report said. “The Complainant also still has the option of filing a complaint before the KISD Board of Directors.” Still.

A Houston Chronicle The analysis found that in Katy ISD, 104 books have been reviewed and 43 have been removed or partially removed since 2018, making it one of the most restrictive school districts in the state.

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