(Dan here…I am reading more examples of this trend of local censorship)
You may recall the story about the Spotsylvania school district in Virginia, where books were being protested and pulled and two board members thought maybe the books should be burned. Well, one of those guys is now the board chairman, and things are blowing up in a hurry.
The board is a 4-3 board (though those who didn’t want to burn the books were supportive of banning them), and the 4-person conservative majority installed Kirk Twigg as the president.Scott Baker has been with district in various capacities for years before becoming superintendent in 2012; he won some awards for his superintendenting prowess, but there’s a portion of the local populace that are not fans. There’s a whole blog devoted to laying out his many alleged sins, but not being hard enough on dirty books has drawn the most criticism in the recent past, along with agitation over school closings.
Baker was on his way out, with departure negotiated for the end of this school year. That was not fast enough for Twigg, who has been vocal in his opposition to various books. The ban was centered on “sexually explicit” books, but Twigg, besides expressing his interest in burning objectionable material also added that he would like to broaden the criteria for rooting through the school libraries, saying, “There are some bad, evil-related material that we have to be careful of and look at.”Twigg promised that, if elected chair of the board, his first action would be to fire Baker effective immediately.
Last Monday night, in a meeting, characterized as chaotic and contentious, he did just that. He called an unscheduled closed session during the meeting, then came back to announce that Baker had been terminated–before being reminded that the board had to take an actual vote.No reason has been given for the firing, but it’s Virginia, a right to work state, and no reason has to be given.