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Georgia School District Removes From Shelves ‘Lewd, Vulgar’ Books Like ‘It Ends With Us’ in ‘Battle Between Good and Evil’

One of Georgia’s largest school districts, in conservative Cobb County outside Atlanta, is pulling several widely popular books from its library shelves in a move that school leadership says will protect families and taxpayers from “vulgar” content being available to schoolchildren. 

The latest books to be removed in the district include “The Perks of Being a Wallflower,” “Thirteen Reasons Why,” and “Lucky.” District schools will also remove “It Ends With Us,” by a best-selling author, Colleen Hoover, which became immensely popular on TikTok but has faced criticism for allegedly glorifying domestic abuse. A movie adoption of “It Ends With Us” is set to have its premiere in June and will star Blake Lively. 

“I will work tirelessly to ensure your children are not given unrestricted access to materials containing lewd, vulgar, and sexually explicit content, nor will your taxes be used to fund it,” the Cobb County school district’s superintendent, Chris Ragsdale, in a statement. 

Last year, the school district began removing books that were “so graphic they could not even be read aloud during a Board meeting or printed in the local newspaper,” the district notes, and the process started with the pulling of “Me, Earl, and the Dying Girl” and “Flamer” from school media centers. Those books were “rife with graphic sexual content, all of which involved children,” the district said. 

“I have made a distinct statement saying protecting children from age-inappropriate and graphically sexually explicit material is a battle between good and evil. You are either in favor of forcing public schools to provide lewd, vulgar, and sexually explicit materials to children, or you are against it,” Mr. Ragsdale said. “As I have repeatedly stated, ‘I do believe the attempt to sexualize children is evil, and we as educators have a professional and moral responsibility to prevent it.’”

At the district’s April board meeting discussing the book removals, some parents pushed back, arguing the school should leave the media centers to do their jobs. 

“Media specialists are the ones with the training to do their jobs, not you. Quit telling them how to do their jobs and banning books in their libraries,” one parent, Sharon Hudson, said, Fox 5 News .

The school is “no more ‘banning books’ than we are banning rated R and NC-17 movies,” Mr. Ragsdale responded to backlash over the removals. 

“What we are doing is refusing to force Cobb County taxpayers and educators to facilitate and advance the sexualization of children,” he said.