A parent's worry that some sections in the Bible are too profane or violent for small children has resulted in an unforeseen turn of events where the Bible is now viewed as improper in Utah. The Book of Mormon could be the following sacred scripture to come under investigation.
Following a review committee's response to a parent complaint, the Davis School District, which is north of Salt Lake City, has chosen to ban the Bible from its elementary and middle schools. The Bible will stay in the high schools in the district. Following a 2022 state legislation that mandates parental involvement in choices regarding "sensitive material," the district has a history of deleting contentious books, including John Green's "Looking for Alaska" and Sherman Alexie's "The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian."
Bible and Possibly the Book of Mormon Banned from Utah Elementary and Middle Schools
According to the article in Associated Press News, The Book of Mormon, the central text of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, the main religion in Utah, was the subject of a lawsuit that was filed this past Friday. A review request for the Book of Mormon was submitted, according to Chris Williams, a district spokesperson. However, he would say why or whether the request was made by the same person who had issues with the Bible, citing school board privacy rules.
The district claimed that it does not make a distinction between review requests and does not take the reasons for them into account. A committee made up of educators from the most conservative community, like the administrators, parents, and teachers, undertook each inspection. The committee has not explained why the Bible was removed or identified the specific portions that they believed to be overly obscene or violent.
Growing Debate Over Potential Bible and Other Book Bans in US Schools and Libraries
In relation to this story, according to Fox 29, Arkansas passed a law this year that could result in criminal charges for librarians who give "harmful" materials to children, as well as a new procedure for public requests to move items in libraries. Arkansas also passed a law this year that could result in criminal charges for librarians who give "harmful" materials to children.
Sen. Linda Chesterfield, a Democrat from Arkansas, voiced her concerns about the potential effects of the new policy during a parliamentary hearing. She was cited as adding that she was concerned about the policy's potential impact and didn't want anyone to have the authority to exclude the Bible from the library.
The Associated Press was informed by EveryLibrary, a nationwide political action organization, this month that it was monitoring at least 121 separate bills submitted in legislatures this year that would affect libraries, librarians, teachers, and access to materials. In the story shared in NBC New York, according to the American Library Association, there were more attempts than ever before last year to restrict or outlaw the sale of books nationwide.
Kasey Meehan, the director of the Freedom to Read program at PEN America, argued that the outrage over the potential banning of the Bible should be extended to all books facing censorship in public schools. She noted that increasing debates highlight the persistent tension between freedom of speech, religious freedom, and parental control within educational contexts.