By: Serena Crawford
The state of Arizona has a statute about what goes into the textbooks that are used in the schools when it comes to pregnancy. They are not allowed to use anything that shows that there are other options aside from adoption and keeping the baby. This means that anything having to do with abortion is not allowed to be in school books. Recently the school ripped out two pages in a biology book that was being used because it mentioned a pill that can induce an abortion called mifepristone.
These pages were a part of a section in the book that spoke about contraceptives and how they were effective with preventing unwanted pregnancy. The section spoke about the normal contraceptives and also talked about mifepristone and the morning-after pill. The school board came out with a 3-2 vote to remove the pages after the Alliance Defending Freedom (a Christian organization) filed a complaint and stated that the pages in the book were going against the state statute.
This complaint comes after the book had been combed through by the Arizona Department of Education. They stated that the passage about the pill was fine and did not violate any of the statutes. A lawyer for the district stated the same. Board member Jill Humphreys voted against the change. She stated that all of the facts were laid out very clearly and it was understandable. She feels that if the books are given to students with missing pages there will be questions about why they have removed important information. Lily Tram was the other of the board members that had voted against the removal of the pages. She stated that they were just introducing a form of censorship by removing information in the book.
Julie Smith is one of the board members who voted for the information to be removed from the books. She stated that if they didn’t do this they could be sued for not following the state statutes that are in place. If the Department of Education stated that no rules were broken, why does one group’s complaint have the ability to remove valuable information from the book? Is it censorship or just abiding by the state laws?