Marion County residents voice concerns over ‘pornographic’ books at school board meeting

Attendees gave complaints about sexually explicit content found in books

MARION COUNTY, Fla. – The Marion County School Board received an earful during its Tuesday night meeting when residents from across the county attended to voice concerns over books in the district’s schools.

During the meeting’s public comment, several attendees came up to the podium to discuss books such as “Flamer,” by Mike Curato, and “The Hate U Give,” by Angie Thomas.

In the last special session, Florida state lawmakers passed a law about keeping obscene material from children.

The residents who discussed the book’s during the meeting pointed to what they said were inappropriate topics in the books, such as sexually explicit content, racial themes and depictions of gender dysphoria.

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“This idea that we need parent’s rights — no, you need parent responsibility,” said Pete Axson, an Ocala resident. “I will call it an attack. It is an attack for the parent’s responsibility, for the parents to know what their children are reading.”

“We don’t want to have activist teacher in our school systems trying to find ways around the law,” “Indoctrination is not education. Exposing students to books in the library about gender-bending ideology is a form of indoctrination.”

Others held signs in the audience. One such sign read, “Stop pornographic book in school libraries.”

The superintendent of Marion County Public Schools said that the district is working to address the concerns from the public.

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Phil Landeros joined WKMG-TV as an executive producer in March 2021.

Anthony, a graduate of the University of Florida, joined in April 2022.