The West Virginia Education Association just joined the chorus of activists advocating for explicit books in classrooms and school libraries. The union opposes a state bill (House Bill 4654) that would remove schools (and public libraries and museums) from the “list of exemptions from criminal liability relating to the distribution and display of obscene matter to minors.”

The West Virginia teachers union is encouraging members to “share your concerns” with state senators. Union leaders claim the obscenity bill, which passed the West Virginia House last week, “could create problems for our educators and libraries.” Dale Lee, West Virginia’s teachers union president laments, “Our educators are contemplating leaving the profession as it is. This may be the final straw that boots them out.”

Why would teachers quit if they are discouraged from distributing and displaying obscene materials to minors? The West Virginia Education Association claims they “act for our students,” so surely they agree that protecting children from explicit materials is a good thing.

Under West Virginia’s state code, obscene matter is materials that, “A reasonable person would find, taken as a whole, lacks serious literary, artistic, political or scientific value.” Despite activists’ hyperbolic claims, schools and libraries that “display and distribute” literary classics have no reason to be concerned.

To learn more about how teachers unions advocate for obscenity, read Iowa Teachers Union Sues To Expose Children To Sexually Explicit Books and review IWF’s resources countering the book “ban” narrative.

For more information about teachers unions, check out the IWF Education Freedom Center