US: School board votes not to ban ‘Two Boys Kissing’ book
A Virginia school board has voted unanimously against banning a gay-themed young adult novel, after a lengthy public hearing.
The book covers several LGBT themes, including coming out, gender identity, gay hookup sites and teenage relationships.
Levithan’s previous book Nick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist was adapted as a film starring Michael Cera, and won a GLAAD award for its portrayal of gay characters.
On Wednesday, at a public meeting attended by over 50 people, the school board found unanimously in favour of keeping the book.
According to Fauquier News, committee member Reverend Joie Clee Weiher said: “This book is not about sex. Heated scenes of kissing are merely a hook, a draw for young people to read a book about relationships, respect and the deeper concerns of the human situation.”
A number of parents spoke at the hearing, both in favour of banning the book and against, but Jessica Wilson, who initially called for the ban, opted not to speak.
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Local resident John Green, had argued: “Most High School students are under the age of 18.
“According to the Virginia Code, they are juveniles.
“The Virginia Code also defines obscene as material that as a whole appeals to an apparent interest in sex and excites lust.
“This book, I believe, meets that definition and is being made available to juveniles, which I believe to be inappropriate.”
Levithan sent a letter in defence of the book to the hearing.
He wrote on his Facebook page: “I just want to thank all of the people who’ve rallied to TWO BOYS KISSING’s defence in the censorship challenge in Fauquier County. Good luck tonight – I am very much with you in spirit.”