Parents Cited Passages About Racism, Masturbation, And Female Genitalia

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — Sixth graders at a New York City school no longer have to read a book on their summer reading list after parents objected to its sexual content.

Public School/Middle School 114 in Rockaway Park pulled “The Absolutely True Diary of Part-Time Indian” from the list.

The Daily News reported parents objected to passages about masturbation as inappropriate for 11-year-olds.

The reference to masturbation was not the only subject that drew the ire of parents, 1010 WINS reporter Eileen Lehpamer reported.

“There are racial slurs against African-Americans in the book, profanity, references to female genitalia,” a parent named Kelly said.

Author Sherman Alexie pulled no punches, calling the efforts of the parents “tiny” and “sad,” and added that his own son read the book in fourth grade.

A Department of Education spokesman said selected texts are school-based decisions.

Alexie’s book is about a Native American who transfers into an all-white high school. It won the 2007 National Book Foundation award for Young People’s Literature.

The author defended the book after it was pulled from an Oregon classroom in 2008. He said every child deals with the kind of issues presented in the book.

(TM and © Copyright 2013 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2013 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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