Scholastic censors book because main character has same-sex parents

Scholastic has decided to censor Lauren
new book Luv Ya Bunches (Abrams/Amulet,
2009) do to its language and homosexual content.

Contact Scholastic and tell them that kids with LGBT
parents deserve equal representation

Follow this link to purchase a copy of Luv Ya

Do you know of other books that have been banned? Visit and let us

All children deserve to have themselves and their families
respected in schools. Too often the children of LGBT parents feel
invisible among their peers and in the stories their teachers tell.
In the worst cases, children of LGBT parents can be teased,
taunted, harassed and outright bullied simply because of other
people’s feelings about their family makeup. Education and
leadership are the keys to ensuring greater tolerance of
differences among our children now and full acceptance of those
differences over time.

That’s why we must ensure that books reflecting LGBT-headed
families are not catalogued incorrectly or removed from the school
and public libraries we access as part of our community life.

Below is an article by Rocco Staino of the School Library Journal about the book

Scholastic Censors Myracle’s ‘Luv Ya Bunches’ from
Book Fairs

This piece is cross-posted at School Library Journal

By Rocco Staino — School Library Journal, 10/21/2009

Don’t expect to see Lauren Myracle’s new book Luv Ya Bunches
(Abrams/Amulet, 2009) at Scholastic school book fairs this year.
It’s been censored—at least for now—do to its language and
homosexual content.

Luv Ya Bunches, about four elementary school girls who have little
in common, but bond over the fact that they’re all named after
flowers, is the first installment of a four-book series. But
Scholastic says the book, released on October 1, failed to meet its
vetting process because it contains offensive language and same-sex
parents of one of the main characters, Milla.

The company sent a letter to Myracle’s editor asking the author to
omit certain words such as “geez,” “crap,” “sucks,” and “God” (as
in, “oh my God”) and to alter its plotline to include a
heterosexual couple. Myracle agreed to get rid of the offensive
language “with the goal—as always—of making the book as
available to as many readers as possible,” but the deal breaker was
changing Milla’s two moms.

“A child having same-sex parents is not offensive, in my mind, and
shouldn’t be ‘cleaned up.'” says Myracle, adding that the book fair
subsequently decided not to take on Luv Ya Bunches because they
wanted to avoid letters of complaint from parents. “I find that
appalling. I understand why they would want to avoid complaint
letters—no one likes getting hated on—but shouldn’t they be
willing to evaluate the quality of the complaint? What, exactly,
are children being protected against here?”

Myracle, who’s no stranger to controversy, has appeared on the
American Library Association’s top 10 list of most often
challenged authors. Still, she’s surprised that Scholastic would
shy away from a reality that exists in numerous households across
the country.

“Over 200,000 kids in America are raised by same-sex parents,
just like Milla. It’s not an issue to clean up or hide away,”
says Myracle. “In my opinion, it’s not an ‘issue’ at all. The
issue, as I see it, is that kids benefit hugely from seeing
themselves reflected positively in the books they read. It’s an
extremely empowering and validating experience.”

Scholastic defended the move, saying a lesbian couple wouldn’t
play well in certain communities around the country, says Kyle
Good, a Scholastic spokeswoman.

“Authors are often given the opportunity to make changes in the
books to meet the norms of the various communities that host the
fairs,” adds Good, explaining that the title will, however, be
available in the Scholastic Book Club catalog.

There wasn’t enough time for Scholastic to further review the
book before including it in its book fairs, adds Good, but the
company will continue monitoring the book’s popularity as well as
the input from book fair field representatives to decide whether it
should be included in future book fairs.

Last year, a Vancouver, WA, school district stopped sponsoring
Scholastic book fairs after a parent complained about the sale of
Philip Pullman’s award-winning fantasy novel, The Golden Compass
(Knopf, 1996), the first book in the “His Dark Materials” trilogy,
saying that it was un-Christian. Instead, parent-teacher
associations had to sponsor the event.

Good says she’s uncertain whether titles portraying
nontraditional families were available for sale at elementary
school Scholastic book fairs. But while Peter Parnell and Justin
Richardson’s picture book And Tango Makes Three (S & S, 2005)
isn’t available for sale at book fairs, it is available on the
Scholastic Web site, she adds.