The Old Lyme Phoebe Griffin Noyes Library posted a notice to its website on June 23, 2023, to indicate that two books in the teen section were being challenged: “Let’s Talk About It: The Teen’s Guide to Sex, Relationships and Being a Human” by Erika Moen and Matthew Nolan, and “You Know, Sex: Bodies, Gender, Puberty and Other Things” by Cory Silverberg and Fiona Smyth.
A group of community members had previously expressed their concerns to the library in a letter that was signed by Selectman Matthew Ward, Board of Finance Chair J. David Kelsey, Board of Finance member Maria Marchant, school board members Mary Powell St. Louis and Christopher Staab and library board trustee Tara Ward.
The first book, Let's Talk About It, features extremely graphic images, and has been rated "not for minors" by Rated Books. Detailed descriptions, along with cartoon pictures, are provided to teach children how to masturbate, how to search kink and sex fantasies on the internet, how and why to consume amateur and professional pornography, and even what an oral sex scene in a porno looks like. The book also recommends sex toys as another way to help masturbate.
"There's nothing wrong with porn," the book says, "it's a fun sugary treat."
The second book, You Know, Sex: Bodies, Gender, Puberty and Other Things, also features detailed, colorful cartoon pictures, promotes the use of pornography repeatedly throughout the book, and even teaches children to use a mirror to take a closer look at their own sex organs. The book also talks about "the many problems with sex assignment" at birth.
Connecticut Democrats responded by defending access to these books.
Of course, the impact of seeing pornographic content in adolescence -- something which is repeatedly touted in these books -- leads to risky sexual behavior in emerging adulthood.
In fact, research has shown that sexually-explicit media exposure predicted early sexual debut, unsafe sex, and multiple sexual partners. Additionally, exposure to a greater number of media modalities increased the likelihood of risky sexual behaviors.
This leaves reasonable people to wonder...
If Connecticut Democrats are defending adolescent access to books that glorify the use of pornographic content, does that mean the CT Dems are in favor of teens exhibiting risky sexual behavior including early sexual debut, unsafe sex and multiple sexual partners? Is that what the CT Dems really mean when they defend books that glorify pornography?