Image Credit: Pleasant Hill Elementary School
The Tennessee Conservative [By Kelly M. Jackson] –
A bill with the goal of expediting the removal of obscene or inappropriate materials that sit on Tennessee School shelves will be heading to the floor of the State House for debate and a vote.
How the bill aims to function is that books that meet the definition of obscene in state law would not even come up for review or a vote by an LEA but should instead be immediately removed. The bill states that books that contain nudity in whole or in part, descriptions or depictions of sexual excitement, sexual conduct, excess violence, or sadomasochistic abuse, as those terms are defined in Tennessee Code Annotated 39-17-901, is patently offensive, or appeals to the “prurient interest” must not be maintained in a school’s library collection.
The bill also sets a time limit of 60 days from when a complaint is filed about an obscene book in a school library collection. If a school board does not vote on a book, it will be deemed inappropriate, removed, and then sent for review to the Tennessee Textbook and Instructional Materials Quality Commission.
HB0843 also makes clear that an LEA does not create a “contemporary community standard” by accepting or rejecting books to include in a library collection.
HB0843 is one of two bills submitted by Representative Lynn, the other is HB841, which As introduced, removes the educational justification of a person possessing obscene material if the person is at a school building, bus, school campus, grounds, recreational area, athletic field, or other property owned, used, or operated by a local education agency. – Amends TCA Title 39, Chapter 17, Part 9.
An amendment to this bill focuses on book distributors, keeping them from even shipping the obscene books to the school libraries to begin with. HB0841 is the revival of the failed attempt to build a wall between Tennessee school children and the obscene materials that in very recent years has made its way into school libraries all over the state.
This bill also heads to the House floor on April 17th to be presented for debate and a vote.
Contact your state house representative and tell them to vote in favor of both bills so a wall can be built between our children and the age-inappropriate materials that have managed to make their way into school libraries here in Tennessee.
About the Author: Kelly Jackson is a recent escapee from corporate America, and a California refugee to Tennessee. Christ follower, Wife and Mom of three amazing teenagers. She has a BA in Comm from Point Loma Nazarene University, and has a background in law enforcement and human resources. Since the summer of 2020, she has spent any and all free time in the trenches with local grassroots orgs, including Mom’s for Liberty Williamson County and Tennessee Stands as a core member. Outspoken advocate for parents rights, medical freedom, and individual liberty. Kelly can be reached at email@example.com.