Chapman didn’t stop there. He railed against the “attack on our children” from “those who wish to normalize sexually deviant behavior,” alleging that “pedophilia and incest are pushing a ‘movement.’”
This isn’t the first time Chapman has gone after teachers for “disguising” what he deems “sexually obscene” material to students. The material? Books by authors of color, or LGBTQ writers, or books with content that covers topics of sexuality, sexual abuse, and the experience of racism. In other words, the reality and history of the world we all live in.
In Nov. 2021, a video of Chapman went viral in which he openly talked about criminally prosecuting teachers for using books that cover the BIPOC experience—titles such as The Hate U Give by Black author Angie Thomas and Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Native American novelist Sherman Alexie.
“Nobody, regardless of their race, religion, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, or occupation has the right to expose children to obscene material,” Chapman has said.
Chapman joins a current nationwide movement by the GOP and local Republican lawmakers to use critical race theory (CRT) as a dog whistle as an opening to ban books.
An Oklahoma state senator is pushing for two bills that would give parents the power to remove any book in a public school library they find objectionable. Meaning any book mentioning sex or the “study of sex, sexual preferences, sexual activity, sexual perversion, sex-based classifications, sexual identity, or gender identity,“ or books “that are of a sexual nature.”
Virginia Beach at-large school board member Victoria Manning—aka book-banning Karen, aka non-reading pro-censorship Karen—is going after American literature she clearly doesn’t understand.
Daily Beast reports that Manning, founder of the “Wokeness Checker” website, along with co-board member Laura Hughes, sent an email to Virginia Beach City Public Schools Superintendent Aaron Spence to demand that four books be removed from circulation or used in the classroom “due to their pornographic nature.”
Associated Press reports that Senate Democratic Leader Zach Wahls along with his Democratic colleagues say attitudes from Chapman explain why there’s a labor shortage in the state. Teachers, nurses, and others are resistant to work in a state with this kind of stifling and oppressive rhetoric.
“We’ve been told it will be more of the GOP greatest hits this session: more attacks on LGBTQ Iowans, more gasoline on the culture war fire, and more attacks on the First Amendment,” Wahls said.
According to AP, the 150 lawmakers and staff returned to the state Capitol without masks, vaccines, or COVID-19 test requirements.
“It’s become increasingly clear we can no longer ignore the lies and misinformation so pervasive today. As elected officials, we have a deep responsibility to not just tell the truth, but defend the truth and hold each other accountable,” House Democratic Leader Jennifer Konfrst told AP. “Our democracy needs us to uphold the truth so it can endure.”
Maybe Chapman should spend a little more time reading books such as The Handmaid’s Tale or 1984. I doubt he reads, but these two would be a great start for him to see what happens when societies start banning books and creating fundamentalist regimes.