There is a quiet parents’ movement afoot in Grand Haven right now, and it is one that could do irreparable harm to our kids.

A small group of parents who goes by “Grand Haven Conservative Parents” has quietly been working to formulate a plan to get any books which engage with LGBTQ characters, themes or issues to be removed from school libraries or kept behind a desk with the requirement of a parent’s note to be checked out.

(26) comments

Noceo

Reading through the comments of and seeing the views from both sides of the argument. Everyone seems to be focusing on right and wrong, censorship to permission slips. I believe those arguments are all valid points but i truly think a lot of people missed a very large and serious issue that stems from the actual story of this book. The book being a object for the LGBTQ kids to lean on and feel more comfortable for their own experiences is blatantly misguided and not very well thought out. It talks about a college aged man having a sexual relationship with a 14 year old boy and when this 14 year old is 17 he recalls his experience with a younger boy. I'm not sure how anyone could not see why this is not what you want to teach kids of any sexual orientation. The whole act is the making of a very serious criminal sexual conduct charge and a one way ticket to registering as a sex offender for the rest of their lives after there stay in jail or prison. Why in the world would anyone defend a book of this nature to influence 10-12 year olds. Read past the attempted feel good acceptance story and look at the message. This is setting kids up to be taken advantage of. In the worst possible way. If my 14 year old daughter brought home some guy that was in college (for clarification any guy till she is 30) day is going to be the worst day of his life. And as parents we all should protect our children from harm and from themselves, talk to your kids tell them the truth don't let someone else's story be thier guiding light

Mamabear857

Ok then. I want every person that thinks it's ok to take this book and read it to your 4th, 5th, 6th grade child. Read it, word for word outloud to them. And post a video for proof because I highly doubt that you will. Its inappropriate for kids. Period. Regardless of gay, straight, even if it was about self love (masterbation) ...it doesnt belong in the hands of kids. Not gay kids either. Not ANY kids. My youngest is 12, Male, 7th grade. I guarantee you he would never want to read a book of this nature. Sex is an intimate private thing that children should not even be thinking or worrying about. 16 yr olds...maybe a different story, they may want to experiment, they should have questions...they are at the age of consent. Fine...but younger children? No way. That's insane thinking.

EastCoaster

As someone who was at the mentioned school board meeting in this article, I can assure you that this article is just plain wrong. There was NEVER an intent NOR suggestion to remove LGBTQ books from the school. NEVER! There was a suggestion made to have books with INAPPROPRIATE SEXUAL CONTENT for 10-12 year old students to be available only to students who's parents consented with this type of material. This is a NORMAL REASONABLE REQUEST to protect innocent minds and the children's youth to parents who wish to do so. II can assure you that I don't want my preteens reading this type of stuff. Again, LGBTQ books were NOT TARGETED, ANY BOOK, containing LEWD CONDUCT was covered by the suggestion made, regardless of sexual orientation.

The author was NOT at the mentioned board meeting and was obviously deceived into believing something that just isn't true.

As someone who knows the situation and was at the school board meeting, read this article and understand:

Paragraph Two: FALSE

Paragraph Three: FALSE

Paragraph Four: FALSE

This is just one more example of media misrepresentation. How you can just rip off an article without facts and attempt to recklessly smear the truth is beyond me. It's an embarrassment that this was published this way, but it is no longer surprising. Be careful on trusting what you read, you too, could be deceived. The questions should have been asked first, before accusations and publication, but that's just how the media tends to operate now a days. Stay alert and stay aware.

tctruthteller

EastCoaster took a play out of the MAGA playbook - he and his alt right hate group got exposed - so his defense is to blame the author that exposed his hate group and call it FAKE NEWS. Pathetic.

Randy

Thank you @lakerlady. I think Rev Cramer means well. However, the book you cited is worrisome for being predatory, pornographic and selfish. I agree with you that this is not something we would wish children with little prefrontal cortex to consume or imitate.

anonymous

If I had children, I would NEVER allow my kids to go to this disgusting school and this disgusting area that surrounds it.

Lakerlady234

I saw the actual statement to the school board posted on our local grand haven Facebook page. Sounds like the books at issue are horrible and the angry parents just want the books to be kept behind the desk and parent consent forms signed. What’s so wrong about that? Here’s a copy of the statement that the mother posted online:

"In December, I received an electronic communication containing a 7 page list of books detailing all of the LGBTQ books in our districts libraries elementary through high school. The list contained snippets of information for each book, some innocent enough, some warning of sexually explicit content.

I called school admin wanting to know if the list was accurate. I was told it was. I then ordered a book off amazon, called “One Man Guy” that was available at my kids 5th /6th grade school flagged as being sexually explicit on this list. I was told by my kids librarian it’s appropriate for 6th grade , although its at a 5th/6th grade school.

When I got the book, I was stunned by what I read thinking about kids ages 10 and 11 reading this book. The book is about a 14 year old boy, Alec, and his romantic encounter with an older sexually experienced, 17 year old Ethan. Ethan details a sexual relationship he had with a college student who lived in his home when he was only 15 years old himself. Now it’s a few years later and an older, sexually experienced, Ethan is pursuing 14 year old Alec.

The book talks about how to steal from stores, which teachers they’d like to bang. And the thrill Alec experiences in a clothing store dressing room having older Ethan looking at his 14 year old naked body, making out with him, with people nearby. One scene leads the reader to believe an older Ethan will give oral sex or anal sex to 14 year old Alec right as his parents walk in. This sexually explicit content, whether g*y or straight, in my opinion,….has no business being in the hands of 5th and 6th graders who are 10-12 years old minors.

In the interest of time allowed here, Im going to read just a few condensed excerpts from the book and ask you to think about your own 10 and 11 year old children and grandchildren reading this book during school hours and you having no knowledge of it to even have a conversation with them afterwards. The characters being straight or g*y is completely irrelevant, just listen to the content:

During freshman year, we were sitting around all talking about which teacher we’d most like to bang, I said Mr. Speck. Id definitely bang Mr. Speck over Ms. Schmidt.

He was my first everything, Ethan paused for emphasis. wed been together for months and we were going at it strong.- speaking of sex with his college boyfriend when he was only 15.

“He was hooking up with other guys, it wasn’t really cheating because we weren’t monogamous, that’s pretty normal in the g*y world. He told me Im not going to let some teenager tie me down when im in the middle of my sexual prime .

And then:

Why are you sitting so far away boyfriend, I don’t bite. (older) Ethan kissed him firmly on the lips. Much of what Ethan had taught (14 year old) alek had been by description, but this was teaching by example and alek was an eager student. Alek learned when when to nibble and when to breathe. The increase in pressure was so subtle Alec didn’t notice it at first but soon, the motion evolved into something stronger. Alec interrupted one of their kisses with a deep guttural moan, ethan grabbed again and alek moaned even louder. You like that do ya boyfriend? Ethan smiled deviously at alek. “uh huh” alek responded. Even a few days ago he might have blushed, but now he didn’t. Ethan unbuttoned aleks shirt, when his hands got to the bottom of alecs shirt, they lingered at the top button of his jeans. Alek jerked away from Ethan. “Im kidding with you dude” , we’re not ready for that for another few days” shut up and kiss me, you’re getting good at it.

And then A few days later…

Between my legs right? Righter than you could guess. He turned the volume up., dimmed the lights and whipped off his shirt, put his finger over Alecs lip, he kissed his fingers, Ethan put his other hand on alecs knee. kissing his face, neck, slowly making his way down his body. His hand climbed up aleks leg until his fingers rested on the top of alecs pants. He started fumbling with the button. Alek closed his eyes and leaned his head back.

Every inch Ethan went down made Aleks heart thump. A few days ago Ethan joked about this, Alek still felt scared but now he felt like he might be ready. Ethan’s hands succeeded in freeing the pants button. Alec opened his eyes and found Ethan looking up at him. Then theyre interrupted by his parents coming home early, disappointed to learn he skipped school but fully embracing the molestation of their child.

All this, in our white Pines school library for 10-12 year old kids

When my kids were in 5th grade, we signed a consent form permitting them to watch a sex education video. I was notified and given an opportunity to come review it. I did and agreed it was age appropriate. Yet, I had no idea, that without my consent, my kids had access to other media that was far more sexually explicit than the film I consented to. Ive since talked to some parents who say the schools have a lot of other sexually explicit content available, g*y and straight.

It is my recommendation that the school create a system of flagging sexually explicit content (allowing parents input) and then devise a method where parents give consent. I think sexually explicit books should be kept behind a counter unless consent is given. I was told this book is appropriate for 6th grade and up, I vehemently disagree.

Another parent brought to my attention just this week that we have another book in our schools where a young man describes how much he loved giving or@l sèx to people in his neighborhood as a six year old child. The content like this Ive seen so far isn’t dissuading or speaking poorly of these acts, or the illegal nature of them, it seemingly attempts to normalize such things, to normalize the sexualization of young children. My hope is that Grand Haven can do better than this for our kids.

Perhaps schools can send out consent forms to parents at the beginning of the year allowing some parents, if they choose, to give one time full consent and access to sexually explicit materials with no restrictions. For other parents, not okay with full access to explicit content, they can opt, on this same form, their desire for restrictions placed on sexually explicit content until consent is given for our own children, giving us the time to review materials for our minor children before we consent."

edwards1

So I noticed "Reverend" that you didn't mention the banning of the #1 selling book in history from public schools. Perhaps you have totally again missed the real core issue.

Lanivan

Actually, the Bible is not banned from public schools......get the facts. https://faithfullymagazine.com/are-bibles-allowed-in-public-schools-can-students-pray-in-school/

edwards1

For being taught as part as a general student consumption it certainly is.

Lanivan

This particular group that describes itself as "conservative" - (read "right wing") has been making news lately as the self-professed warriors in fighting the battle to keep discrimination and bullying fully ensconced within the public school system......you know, that school system that was created for ALL children of all races, sexes, and abilities. Their FB page states the following as their 'mission'...."To work with local school administration who are increasingly pushing a hard leftist (borderline Marxist) political agenda on our children...".

"Borderline Marxist"??? Who are these people? What kind of carefully crafted disinformation are they trying to promote? That right there tells me these folks have an agenda that goes far beyond discrimination and perhaps into the realm of the separation of church and state, or maybe a theocracy-based 'public' school system?

I hope the GHHS administration listens very carefully to this group, investigates their claim thoroughly, finds a common-ground solution, and then moves on to address the many serious educational challenges and abundant educational opportunities that await our high school students as they prepare for the wondrous and complex world and future before them.

djbixeman

Always two sides to every issue . If you allow censorship in any form you open the door for more censorship.

But ,

The easiest way to take away people's rights , by getting them to ask you to .

Vladtheimp

Leftists at work - I actually wrote the words LGBTQ stand for and my comment was denied due to 'profanity' - is that why The Rev used initials? What part of the actual names of LGBTQ is/are profane?

LOL!

Lanivan

Perhaps your reputation precedes you?

Vladtheimp

Try it yourself - I just included the real terms and got this "Your comment cannot be accepted due to the presence of profanity. Please remove any objectionable content from your comment and try again."

MOONDOG

They know who you are...like vultures.

MOONDOG

It does this old heart good to see you and Vlad at it.

If only I could post a picture...

Vladtheimp

This letter is a Showcase of how the Leftists in our society operate; they find something that is objectionable according to their warped beliefs; they eschew following established processes for determining outcomes and instead rely on the platform the media provides them to broadcast their objections, grossly exaggerating as they do so.

A group of concerned parents of children in the Grand Haven Area Public Schools, who clearly have a vested interest in materials to which their children are exposed, relate their concerns to school administrators, who prudently decide to take the matter under advisement – maybe to hear from other parents with children in the schools.

But such a reasoned approach is anathema to the Rev., who feels entitled to stick his nose into what is purely a matter between the school and its parents.

Since it’s highly unlikely he would object to books revealing the demonstrated physical and mental health risks of kids choosing this damaging lifestyle, he is likely supporting the school system’s promotion of books glamorizing this lifestyle, chosen without the input of parents; but he’s entitled ‘because”. To compare books that help children understand human gender (science) using Leftist made up terms like ‘straight’ and ‘cis-gendered’ with books that promote multiple sexes, devoid of a scientific basis, is simply political and dishonest – to state “Let’s not marginalize our children or teenagers simply because their gender or sexuality doesn’t line up with the established views of a certain segment of society” is disgraceful, since the ‘certain segment of society’ is 95% of the American people

Well, I have the same number of dogs in the fight as the Rev., and no platform if my reply isn’t published, but here's my recommendation to the school system – purchase books and access to websites that identify the dangers of the LGBTQ lifestyle choice, and pair them with the books supportive of that lifestyle – if a student checks one book from the library, he or she gets one with the opposite message. And hold discussions about how kids should have access to knowledge squares with tearing down statues of Confederate War heroes like General Robert E. Lee.

Lanivan

What so warped about believing that all people are equal in the eyes of the law and the Constitution; that Jesus tells us to love thy neighbor as thyself; that all people share 99.9% DNA; and the belief that promiscuity, degradation, adultery, and abuse are shared by all kinds of people. There are really no more "dangers of the LGBTQ lifestyle" than any other sexual lifestyle.....this is a myth, Vlad, a figment of your vivid imagination, an old wives' tale!

Vladtheimp

Welcome as a Tribune subscriber, and thank you for your selection and concerns on a website I won't identify to protect your reputation.

I urge you and all readers to research the mental and emotional health problems and the incidences of STDs in the LGBTQ+ community compared to the entire population - that is the main reason to stop the grooming of minor children to choose this aberrant lifestyle by people like the Rev and any school administrator or librarian who supports exposing kids to this trash. Science and statistics are not figments of imagination.

edwards1

We are all sinners created in the image of God(Genesis 1:27), but we are not all His children unless we believe in His Son. (John 1:12). LGBTQ really isn't the core issue. It's simply a manifestation of sin, like many other depravities of mankind. God will eventually give us over to our sin (Romans 22-32). Those verses cover what is being talked about here. Question is: Is one willing to submit and believe ?

Ghparent

This is the ugly part of our community, writing things like this that stretch the actual facts. No place have any of these parents in this group said or done anything against any child that is GLBT or other..if you are speaking about these books in these school library without ever reading them you point is not valid..if you have read them..you are seriously sick in the head and probably need to be in prison. If this kind of material was based on straight kids, parents would feel EXACTLY the same.. Not only do these books glorify underage acts...but also a 6 year old boy giving oral and claiming he enjoyed it so much he wanted to do it more..also talks a bout a 17 year old boy and a 14 year old boys very specific acts..but the bottom line is our children are subject to these books of questionable nature, they in elementary and middle school..is any parent really ok with this? sorry just not the place for it..this is a really sick attemp at socialization of innocent youth.. In my opinion there is a law suit here and I hope the school really takes this seriously...because they are in the wrong..

kyleahammes@gmail.com

Is there documentation that can be shared for the noted formal request that was supposedly made from this conservative group to the Grand Haven Area Public Schools Board?

EastCoaster

I was there, this article is misleading. There was no list and the suggestion was to limit access to ALL Sexually LEWD material

tctruthteller

there is 100% a 7-page list of lgbtq-themed books that the woman who presented at the meeting is targeting, and her intent is to have them all labeled as "sexually explicit". she posted the list on her personal facebook page. Yes, the suggestion was to limit access to all sexually explicit material, but you left out the fact that she wanted all lgbtq-themed books labeled as sexually explicit.

Zapmama27

There was never a 7 page list of books given to the board, nor was there ever a request to ban all lgbtq books based on lgbtq characters. The parent mentioned she heard about this book after receiving this list of lgbtq books and that she noticed one was flagged as being sexually explicit. The parent made it very clear she wanted parental consent for all sexually explicit material, gay or straight. She cited one book of concern that made her aware of the issue with availability without consent of sexually explicit material to minors. Call the board or find the transcript and notes parent read from at the board meeting and listen to the audio instead of making things up out of thin air.

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