A Texas school board meeting erupted in chaos when a mom started ranting about butt sex depicted in one of the books students were reading. The Lake Travis Independent School District was taken to task over a passage from Ashley Hope Pérez’s 2015 novel Out of Darkness, which apparently depicts “cornholing,” a little-known euphemism for the act.
- Kara Bell didn’t even know what cornholing was. The mom took to the lectern to read out the excerpt in question, telling school board members that she had to look up what “cornhole” even was. “Not going to lie, I had to Google ‘cornhole’ because I have the game in my backyard,” Bell said. “But according to Wikipedia, ‘cornhole’ is a sexual slang vulgarism for anus. In verb form ‘to cornhole,’ which came into usage in the 1930s, means to have butt sex.” The more you know!
- The mom doesn’t want middle school kids learning about butt sex. Which is fair enough, I suppose. The school board turned off Bell’s microphone to stop her rant, but that didn’t stop her from calling for the books to be removed from both Hudson Bend Middle School and Bee Cave Middle School. “I’ve never had butt sex. I don’t want to have butt sex. I don’t want my kids having butt sex,” she said. “I want you to start focusing on education and not public health.”
- Perhaps unsurprisingly, Out of Darkness isn’t actually about butt sex. In fact, it’s a loose reimagining of the real-life 1937 New London school explosion that killed nearly 300 people. That event is used “as a backdrop for a riveting novel about segregation, love, family, and the forces that destroy people.” I doubt teachers would be singling out that very specific passage.
- The school board did eventually pull the book from the libraries. KXAN reported that the Lake Travis Independent School District ultimately heeded Bell’s pleas, with a spokesperson saying, “A district possesses significant discretion to determine the content of its school libraries. A district must, however, exercise its discretion in a manner consistent with the First Amendment.”