The King James Bible was banned from some Utah elementary and middle school shelves, and parents are now demanding a review of The Book of Mormon, according to school officials.
The Davis school district has enacted the measure due to the law passed in 2022 that allows parents to challenge books that contain “pornographic or indecent material,” according to The Salt Lake Tribune.
Some Davis district parents felt like the law was being used to target the LGBTQ+ community, so they used their power to challenge the Bible.
The Bible includes “incest, onanism, bestiality, prostitution, genital mutilation, fellatio, dildos, rape, and even infanticide,” said one parent in their request, according to The Salt Lake Tribune. This fits under Utah Code Section 76-10-1235, which states that anything “harmful to minors” on school property should be reviewed.
The King James Bible was the only translation taken off the shelves, as it was the only one that was challenged. The committee members unanimously decided that some parts of the specific translation are “too vulgar” for younger readers, hence why it was only taken off of elementary and middle school library shelves.
Book bans are not a new concept in the U.S.. Since 2020, there have been multiple instances of states working to ban books regarding race and gender.
What makes this Bible ban unique is that parents are basically using republican knowledge and words against them. They used words like “pornography” to describe books that explain gender exploration and cite it as challenging the “woke agenda.” So, when a parent challenges a book that most Republicans find value in teaching, they are automatically defensive. This is the frustration that Democrats have been feeling about the censorship all along.
According to a poll conducted by the American Library Association, 70% of parents oppose book banning in schools. In just the 2022 fall semester, 1,477 individual books have been banned, with the leading states being Texas, Florida, Missouri, Utah, and South Carolina. The high number is credited to school officials “erring on the side of caution,” according to Pen America.
The committee has yet to decide on the Book of Mormon, but the Salt Lake Tribune is working to receive a copy of the complaint and ruling.