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THOUGHT POLICE STILL AT LARGE

Objecting to Anything That Might Challenge the Most Conventional Ideas

A 20-year-old college student in Yucaipa, California is protesting the inclusion of four landmark graphic novels in an English class that she took during the recently-finished Spring 2015 semester at Crafton Hills College, reported Maren Williams at Comic Book Legal
Persepolis coverDefense Fund (CBLDF) on June 13. According to the Redlands Daily Facts newspaper, Tara Shultz and her parents object to four of the ten books offered in the course — Persepolis, Fun Home, Y: The Last ManVol. 1, and The Sandman Vol. 2: The Doll’s House as “pornography” and “garbage.”

Shultz, who is working towards an Associate of Arts in English at the public community college, signed up for English 250: Fiction because it fulfills one part of her degree requirements. She was apparently aware that the specific focus of the class was graphic novels, but she told the newspaper that “I expected Batman and Robin, not pornography.”

She and her father say the course professor failed to warn students about the books’ salacious content, but they just weren’t paying attention: “The school requires instructors (p. 20) to distribute a detailed syllabus on the first day of the term–and ample time to withdraw with no effect on her grade.”

And Scultz could have taken any of fourteen other courses that would fulfill the same degree requirement as English 250.

Her father also objects to the availability of these sinful tomes in the campus bookstore when “there are under-aged kids here at this campus.” (One must wonder if he knows what is in the library and on the Internet for free!—MW)

Happily, Williams reported subsequently, that Crafton Hills College, “facing the wrath of the Internet,” declined to “eradicate” any graphic novels from its English 250 course as 20-year-old student Tara Shultz and her parents had demanded. The Shultz family disagrees with the college’s defense of academic freedom and the gather, Greg Schultz, announced that he now plans to speak to the San Bernardino Community College District Board of Directors which oversees Crafton Hills, and he has also contacted state lawmakers.

And here’s the plug I’ve been leading up to: CBLDF applauds Crafton Hills administrators for standing by their curriculum and their commitment to academic freedom. We will be watching for an equal display of backbone from the board of directors!

For more Rants & Raves with its comics news and reviews, gossip and cartooning lore, visit www.RCHarvey.com

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