‘Gender Queer’ & ‘White Fragility’ Recommended by Teachers Union for Summer Reading

The National Education Association (NEA), the country’s largest teachers’ union, has included two controversial books about LGBTQIA+ identity and racism in its summer reading list recommendations for American educators country-wide.


The NEA announced Monday that “Gender Queer” and “White Fragility” were among their selections for its ‘Great Summer Reads for Educators!’ list.

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The first book, Gender Queer,  is a graphic memoir by Maia Kobabe about gender and sexual identity. The book was the number one title on the American Library Association’s banned books list in 2022 due to its sexually explicit content, including drawings of children performing oral sex.

When Florida pulled the book from school libraries, many critics condemned the move, then complained of being sent “unsolicited” pornographic content when shown pictures of its contents.

Fox News Digital previously reported on Gender Queer’s author, Maia Kobabe, defending the sexually explicit graphic images in the memoir during an interview with NPR in January, where she said, “I honestly think the book is a lot less explicit than it could be,” Kobabe told NPR.

“The topic of gender touches on identity… and it touches on sexuality/ And it’s hard to fully explain I think what like how a gender identity can impact every facet of life as an adult without touching at least a little bit on sexuality. And I wanted to at least not to like shy away from that.”

While this defense did not convince parents nationwide to expose their kids to this material, the NEA intends to ensure that teachers are familiar with it and its values.

The second book, “White Fragility” by Robin DiAngelo, insists that White Americans use anger, shame, and guilt to avoid taking responsibility for racial inequality. The book takes an unfalsifiable approach, where any opposition to DiAngelo’s ideas by a white person is framed as just reinforcing her thesis of “fragility.”

The NEA decided that it’s crucial for educators to buy in to, or at least be familiar with, these ideas as well.

NEA President Becky Pringle defended the inclusion of the books and claimed “every single social system” creates “inequities” that teachers must work into their professions

 

“For us at the NEA, education justice must be about racial justice, it must be about social justice, it must be about climate justice. It must be about all of those things. For our students to be able to come to school ready to learn every day–We can never think of education as an isolated system because everything connects to our students’ ability to learn. So, we have to necessarily talk about housing justice, food inequality, and the reality that we all just went through a global pandemic together and of course it was the most marginalized communities that were already suffering from the inequities in every single social system in this country and every country.”

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