Insectman Home
Presentations
Contact Us
My Testimony
Articles
Our Links
Get Saved
Exodus Mandate
The Lie: Evolution
 

Textbook War


MARSHALL UNIVERITY and BANNED BOOKS WEEK

By Karl C. Priest June 8, 2019 (revised 6-26-19)

In 2015 Marshall University Libraries and the American Civil Liberties Union had a sham program to observe “Banned Books Week.” The event was a vicious attack on the Protesters that included this whopper: “The protest sparked the banning of books throughout the entire United States.” I challenge anyone to prove it. Of course the usual exaggerated and false slurs were included such as: “These protests quickly became unruly and violent, many school buildings, school busses (sic) and homes of children still attending school were attacked with bombs, gunfire and even stoned.” The FACTS prove that the Protesters were NOT VIOLENT! The bald-faced lie about the homes of children is a new one to me and I thought I had heard them all.*

Blatant hypocrisy was exhibited by Marshall University official Monica Brooks who “ spoke about the importance of bringing this subject to the attention of Marshall University Students. ‘One of the reasons we bring programs like this to Marshall is so that we can broaden people’s perspectives and enlighten students who might not be exposed to this information other wise (sic),’Brooks said. Campus’ libraries provide all genres and level of controversial topics to students to ensure their need for their individual education and topics with in their major are being met and material is being adequately provided. ‘We do not censor, we do add materials to the collection that some people might find offensive because they may be pertinent to support curriculum or research needs…’”

BWHAHAHA! Marshall University does not have a copy of my book and Marshall University has not (to date—June 2019) shown any interest in hearing the points made by the Protesters.

(Banned Books Week: The Great Textbook War Lecture by Kelsie Lively, reporter (for the student newspaper) September 30, 2015 https://marshallparthenon.com/6149/news/banned-books-week-the-great-textbook-war-lecture/) The complete article is below.

In another article Brooks was quoted saying "We believe very firmly that everyone should have access to information and use their critical thinking skills to make good decisions and hopefully be exposed to more than one viewpoint." That sanctimonious statement does not include access to my book and the viewpoint of the Protesters.

The panel discussion included Trey Kay, the executive director of the ACLU of West Virginia, and a Riverside (Kanawha County) High School AP literature teacher. Trey Kay is reasonably objective, the ACLU is a hate-group, and regarding the teacher, see item 14 above. It brings to mind an image of three ostriches with their heads in the sand patting each others’ fannies with their tail-feathers.

(Marshall, ACLU host discussion on Kanawha County 'textbook war' by Bishop Nash Oct 1, 2015
https://www.herald-dispatch.com/news/marshall-aclu-host-discussion-on-kanawha-county-textbook-war/article_b6c141f6-67f1-11e5-9e95-7727d5f14663.html) The complete article is below.

*A friend commented: “'attacked with bombs, gunfire and even stoned.’  Even STONED? Wow, I mean, being bombed is pretty bad, and getting shot at isn't very pleasant, but having someone throw stones at your house, whew, that's REALLY horrible.

“Many years ago I realized the Librarians' "Banned Book Week" was nothing more or less than an effort to scare off parents from being involved in what their children are exposed to. Banned books? They are the gatekeepers of what books are allowed in the library, obviously they pick and choose and the books THEY don't like don't even appear on the shelves in the first place. How many recent Creation Science, ID, or doubting-evolution books can you find in any given library?”

I wanted to discuss the matter. The following is a complete chronological chain of communication. Explanatory notes are in red.

I did not attempt to contact Bishop Nash of the Herald-Dispatch.

I emailed Ms. Lively at lively37@marshall.edu on May 29, 2019.

Dear Ms. Lively:

Regarding your article at https://marshallparthenon.com/6149/news/banned-books-
week-the-great-textbook-war-lecture/
:

Why was I not invited?  Perhaps because I have facts like those at http://www.insectman.us/testimony/protester-voices.htm

Sincerely,

Karl Priest

I did not receive a reply.

On May 31 I tried to contact Ms. Brooks.

Dear Ms. Brooks:

In a 2015 article (https://marshallparthenon.com/6149/news/banned-books-week-the-great-textbook-war-lecture/) you are quoted as saying "One of the reasons we bring programs like this to Marshall is so that we can broaden people’s perspectives and enlighten students who might not be exposed to this information other wise," Brooks said.  Campus’ libraries provide all genres and level of controversial topics to students to ensure their need for their individual education and topics with in their major are being met and material is being adequately provided.  "We do not censor, we do add materials to the collection that some people might find offensive because they may be pertinent to support curriculum or research needs…”

Are you aware of my book Protester Voices--The 1974 Textbook Tea Party? (http://www.insectman.us/testimony/protester-voices.htm)

Thank you.

Karl Priest

On June 3 I emailed the Director of Communications, Office of University Communications. There is no need to provide the name.

On May 31 I sent an email to Monica Brooks.  I did not receive an "Out of Office" notification.

Is she receiving emails?

Thank you.

Karl Priest

I did not receive a reply.

On June 4 I emailed the university president—Jerome A. Gilbert.

Dear President Gilbert:

I have sent email questions to Ms. Monica Brooks and Ms. Leah Payne and have not received a response.

Are either of them on no longer with Marshall?

Thank you.

Karl Priest

I did not receive a reply.

Also, on June 4, I emailed the Assistant Director of Communications, Senior University Relations Specialist, Office of University Communications There is no need to provide the name.

Hello:

Please tell me how to reach Dr. Monica Brooks.

Thank you.

Karl Priest

I did not receive a reply.

On June 6 I called the office of Monica Brooks and left a voice mail. Then I sent an email at 2:25 p.m. The email included a copy of my original email below my name which I have not included with this entry.

Dear Dr. Brooks:

I as I said in my 2:19 PM phone message to your office, I will be out for the afternoon so I am resending the below email which may have ended up in your SPAM folder.

Please respond.

Thank you.

Karl Priest

Dr. Brooks replied and the correspondence follows.

June 7, 8:46 a.m.

Hi Mr. Priest – so great about your book. Several years ago I had a student in one of my classes who was working in that school when this happened. Thank you so much for sharing! This was a pivotal time in history that our students need to be made aware of. Dr. Brooks

Monica García Brooks, EdD

Associate Vice President for Online Learning & Dean of University Libraries

Drinko Library 306 | One John Marshall Drive | Huntington, WV 25755 | 304.696.6474 office | 304.690.1662 txt/cell |  monica.brooks@marshall.edu

June 7, 10:48 a.m.

Dear Dr. Brooks:

Thank you for responding.

Please answer some sincere questions.

What school are you referring to?  I do not recall mentioning a school.

Does the Marshall library contain a copy of Protester Voices--The 1974 Textbook Tea Party? (http://www.insectman.us/testimony/protester-voices.htm)

If not, will you make sure that the MU Library gets a copy?

Have you read the book?

In 2009 and 2015 Marshall hosted a forum that was critical of the 1974 Kanawha County Textbook Protesters.  The lady who came in 2009 was not a representative of the Protesters.  Why was I, or someone informed with an opposing viewpoint, not included?  

I am dismayed at the amount of personal prejudices, biased reporting, and shoddy research that has defamed thousands of fine citizens of West Virginia.  I am referring to the 1974 Kanawha County Textbook Protesters.  Based upon your statement (below) will you lead the way to bring a program to Marshall University that will "broaden people’s perspectives and enlighten students who might not be exposed to this information other wise."

With respect.

Sincerely,

Karl 

June 7, 11:03 a.m.

Hi Mr Priest

We will definitely look into it - acquisitions has closed for this year but we will put it on our list for next fiscal year.

We have already set up our programming for next year- our emphasis will be recruitment of new students but will keep creative programs in mind for the future. 

I don’t recall the school she worked at but I had a student who remembered these events from 1974.

Thanks so much for sending this along!

Sent via mobile -

Monica García Brooks, EdD

AVP for Online Learning & Dean of Libraries

Marshall University 

June 7, 11:43 a.m.

Dear Dr. Brooks:

I will be blunt.

Your response is a brush off.

Marshall University has defamed thousands of fine citizens of West Virginia.  Marshall University should make a priority of correcting this egregious fact.

For documented facts about what has been done to the Kanawha County Textbook Protesters, please see Textbook Protester Truth. (http://www.insectman.us/testimony/textbook-protester-truth/the-facts.htm)

Also, please  see how  Protester Voices  has been censored and suppressed. (http://www.insectman.us/testimony/banned-book.htm)

Marshall University students should be exposed to those facts because, as you say, "This was a pivotal time in history that our students need to be made aware of."

If Marshall ever rights this wrong, I will be sure to acknowledge that fact.

Respectfully,

Karl

To date, I have not received a response from her.

Jun 21, 2019 2:06 pm

I received this email from Brandi Jacobs.

Mr. Priest,

Your email was shared with me. Have you been assisted or is there some way that I may be able to answer questions that you may have about the University.

Best regards,

Brandi

 ____________________________

BRANDI D. JACOBS-JONES
Chief of Staff | Sr. Vice President for Operations
Marshall University
Old Main 114
One John Marshall Drive
Huntington, WV 25755
304.696.3328 (office) 304.360.3415 (cell) 304.696.2450 (fax)
jacobs2@marshall.edu / www.marshall.edu

From:  Karl Priest < kcpriest@aol.com > 
Sent: Tuesday, June 4, 2019 9:08 PM
To: Marshall University President's Office < president@marshall.edu >
Subject: Questions about Marshall

Dear President Gilbert:

I have sent email questions to Ms. Monica Brooks and Ms. Leah Payne and have not received a response.

Are either of them on no longer with Marshall?

Thank you.

Karl Priest

I responded by email that day and left a phone message the next day. Then I sent the following to the Marshall University president. It contains my email to Ms. Jacobs.

Jun 25, 2019 10:01 pm

To: president@marshall.edu
CC: jacobs2@marshall.edu

June 25, 2019

Dear President Gilbert:

I received the email below the horizontal line (omitted here for the sake of duplication ) from Ms. Jacobs and when I responded I got this notification:  
550: permanent failure for one or more recipients (jacobs2@marshall.edu:blocked)

On June 24 I left a telephone message for Ms. Jacobs which has not been returned.

So, below my name (in blue font) is my response to her query.

Respectfully,

Karl Priest

Hello Brandi:

Please see  http://www.insectman.us/testimony/textbook-protester-truth/marshall-exposed.htm .

If Marshall would like to right its wrongs on that subject, just let me know.

Thank you.

Karl  

I did not receive a response.

NOTE: URLs have been added in parenthesis which were in the hot links of the original correspondence. This is so the website URLs will be visible to anyone reading a hard copy.

On pages of 164-165 of Protester Voices--The 1974 Textbook Tea Party I wrote (in 2010) about two 2009 incidents:

>
On Tuesday, November 3, I was surprised to read the following in the Gazette.

Another free public forum about the historic 1974 Kanawha County uprising against "godless textbooks" is scheduled for 7 p.m. Wednesday at George Washington High School auditorium.

Producer Trey Kay is to present his public radio documentary, "The Great Textbook War," to be followed by a panel discussion with the Rev. Jim Lewis and other figures who were involved in the controversial clash 35 years ago.

(http://www.wvgazette.com/News/200911030600)

Mr. Kay did not to let any protesters know about this event.

In the same article I found:

Similar documentary presentations and panel discussions about the 1974 fundamentalist protest are set for Thursday and Friday at the John Deaver Drinko Library at Marshall University in Huntington. (10)

When I contacted Mr. Kay he told me the protesters would be represented by Kelly Wills-Carson who was in the documentary. Mrs. Carson was a child who was placed in a Christian school during the protest. I doubt if she was capable (even if she wanted to) of providing a rebuttal to someone as experienced as Jim Lewis.  (11)

A panel discussion featuring a pro-book leader without a protest leader is bogus. 

I didn’t need to hear the discussion for I could have pre-written the dialogue. I was unable to locate an audio recording of any of the post Forum sessions.

Avis Hill said, “It appears to me that they can't debate us, so they debate empty chairs that can't talk back.  It will be just a sham--twisting history once again.” Hill even offered to fly in to represent the protester side.

Hill, like me, thinks the pro-bookers feared a fair fight.

In my opinion, the whole thing is rather suspicious. It appears that the liberal powers that be were distressed that the documentary only slanted the story (by my estimation) 52-48 percent in favor of the pro-bookers. Pro-bookers cannot tolerate anything close to fair and balanced reporting.

In order to have had an academic and objective series of follow-up forums, a group equally representing both sides should have appeared together. 

Footnotes (pages 169-171 of Protester Voices--The 1974 Textbook Tea Party:

(10) Marshall University’s College of Education and Human Services and its Information Technology division hosted a two day symposium on the Textbook War on November 5 and 6, 2009.

A Marshall press release quoted Mr. Kay as saying, “Controversy erupted over newly adopted school textbooks. School buildings were hit by dynamite and Molotov cocktails, buses were riddled with bullets, journalists were beaten and surrounding coal mines were shut down by protesting miners.” Once again, the violence (which was a small part of the protest—see Chapter 1) is the highlight of a propaganda piece about the Textbook War.

The only reference to teachers was, “English teacher Mildred Holt, who had grown up in Kanawha’s black community, was excited to teach the works of African American writers, but when the KKK began to protest the books, she felt sure the protest was racially based.” The KKK became involved late in the protest. No teacher was ever banned from teaching material from black authors.

That a black teacher would embrace the pathetic examples of black literature represented in the protested books is sad. How Marshall University can ignore the voices of protester teachers can only be explained by narrow-minded liberalism. If Marshall students were present, the goals of a comprehensive education were not met.

The news release also claimed that there would be “a panel discussion in the atrium covering both sides of the issue presented in the broadcast with Trey Kay, Reverend Jim Lewis, Kelly Wills-Carson, and Stan Bumgardner.” That is pure rubbish! Carson and Lewis are discussed above. Kay, at best, is objective, but certainly not on the protester side. Baumgartner (a historian) is an unknown, but I have never heard of him being sympathetic to the protesters.

It is obvious that the follow-up forums were designed to be an ode to liberals like Lewis and a pathetic attempt to save face after the illogic and duplicity of the pro-book panelists was exposed at the real Forum.

After I posted my comments on the Internet about the follow-up forums, I was politely taken to task by a liberal who was there and wanted to defend the format of the follow-up forums.
>

The transcript of that dialogue is included below.

>
(11) Ms. Wills-Carson did not respond to my request to contribute protester positive commentary for this book.
>

The above is documentation that exposes Marshall University as hypocritical contributors and perpetuators of the slurs, lies, exaggerations, sensationalism, historical errors, and omission of key facts that have been used against the “Courageous Corps of 74”—the Kanawha County Textbook Protesters.

The two articles are below.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Here are the two articles referred to above.

Banned Books Week: The Great Textbook War Lecture

Kelsie Lively, reporter September 30, 2015

Marshall University Libraries and the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of West Virginia have teamed up to celebrate Banned Books Week along with Native West Virginian, Trey Kay to present his documentary podcast “The Great Text Book War”.

The Kanawha County Textbook Controversy was a religiously influenced educational protest that took place in West Virginia in 1974. The protest sparked the banning of books throughout the entire United States.

In 1974, the English Language Arts Textbook Committee of Kanawha County recommended 325 new textbooks to be integrated into the counties curriculum, many Conservative-Christian parents of the area were unhappy with the content within the books.

In front of over 1000 local residents, the Kanawha County School Board voted to approve the list of books that would be made available for teachers to use in their curriculums in the upcoming school year.

Many Conservative community members called on the community to protest the Liberal curriculum stating that their children should not be subjected to the outrageous teachings in the textbooks. These protests quickly became unruly and violent, many school buildings, school busses and homes of children still attending school were attacked with bombs, gunfire and even stoned.

Host and producer of the Podcast Us and Them, Trey Kay, spoke about the topic and his journey to find answers of why the issue was so important to the Conservative-Christians through his documentary “The Great Textbook War”.

According to Kay, the controversy came from the fact that local parents and community leaders, the Conservative-Christians, were not going to let outside influences choose the material for the curriculum their students would be learning.

“The textbook controversy was very important during its time because, I think, that it had a big impact on how it is that we in America chose what it is that we teach our students,” Kay said.

Kay said it is important to understand the culture wars on both side of the issue that sparked a national debate from West Virginia. “We live in a big world where there are a lot of people who hold views and values different than we do and we see it right now, everyday, in the culture wars,” Kay said. “I don’t know that this event is significant other than the fact it is just another example of how the culture wars have been playing out in this country.”

Assistant Vice President for IT: Online Learning & Libraries, Monica Brooks, spoke about the importance of bringing this subject to the attention of Marshall University Students.

“One of the reasons we bring programs like this to Marshall is so that we can broaden people’s perspectives and enlighten students who might not be exposed to this information other wise,”Brooks said.

Campus’ libraries provide all genres and level of controversial topics to students to ensure their need for their individual education and topics with in their major are being met and material is being adequately provided.

“We do not censor, we do add materials to the collection that some people might find offensive because they may be pertinent to support curriculum or research needs in a psychology class or a political science class or a health related class,” Brooks said.

AP teacher at Riverside High School, Steve Shamblin, spoke on his personal battle with the banned book issue in Kanawha County showing that even today many parents still have a problem with the material that is being taught in the current K-12 curriculum.

https://marshallparthenon.com/6149/news/banned-books-week-the-great-textbook-war-lecture/

Marshall, ACLU host discussion on Kanawha County 'textbook war'

By BISHOP NASH Oct 1, 2015

Marshall University Libraries and the American Civil Liberties Union of West Virginia observed Banned Books Week by opening one of the most controversial chapters in the Mountain State's history: The Kanawha County textbook protests of 1974.

Students and faculty listened to excerpts from Trey Kay's podcast, "Us & Them," and a panel discussion on civil liberties in public education during an open discussion Wednesday night in John Deaver Drinko Library at Marshall University.

"I would hope that anyone that listens to the podcast will have a commitment to the freedom to read," said Monica Brooks, Marshall University assistant vice president for information technology. "We believe very firmly that everyone should have access to information and use their critical thinking skills to make good decisions and hopefully be exposed to more than one viewpoint."

This is the second time Kay, whose podcast on West Virginia Public Broadcasting explores the impact of culture wars as they occur, has come to Marshall for this event, last visiting in 2013. The radio journalist, a Charleston native now living in New York, won a Peabody Award for his 2009 radio documentary "The Great Textbook War," unraveling a year of protests following the Kanawha County Board of Education's approval of two controversial language arts textbooks.

Although public education in America has been challenged since its creation, Kay said the Kanawha County incident sticks out due to its intense and violent nature.

"This has been going on a long time," Kay said. "The reason the Kanawha County textbook controversy is the most significant and remarkable is because it was the most violent of these controversies."

The two textbooks, America Reads and Language of Man, contained excerpts seen as immoral and counter to beliefs fostered in the community. Thousands of students were pulled from school, miners and laborers walked off the job in protest, school buses were attacked, and one elementary school was bombed during the riots.

Assuring not all protesters responded through violence, Kay said the Kanawha County textbook controversy was important to its time in other ways, citing an impact on how Americans choose what is taught to students. Local people, not exclusively those in academia, began to have a say in what is to be taught and which values of the community were to be reflected in education. Kay also pointed out that, in contrast to contemporary left-wing movements protesting the Vietnam War and in favor of Civil Rights, the makeup of the protestors in the "textbook war" was far more conservative.

Agreeing that both sides have valid points and seeking to generate empathy for opposing sides, Kay said culture wars shape America to the present day.

"Can we just tell people who are against Planned Parenthood to get over it? I don't think we can, because they're not going to," Kay said. "But there's got to be some type of way where we're going to have some respectful dialog with them.

"We live in a big world full of people who hold views and values different than we do," Kay said. "We see it every day in the culture wars."

Jennifer Meinig, executive director of the ACLU of West Virginia, and Steve Shamblin, an AP literature teacher at Riverside High School in Kanawha County, joined Kay on the panel discussion.

https://www.herald-dispatch.com/news/marshall-aclu-host-discussion-on-kanawha-county-textbook-war/article_b6c141f6-67f1-11e5-9e95-7727d5f14663.html

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Transcript of my conversation with the liberal regarding Marshall University’s College of Education and Human Services and its Information Technology division hosted a two day symposium on the Textbook War on November 5 and 6, 2009.

The liberal said:

I don't think that the forums were slanted.  You, apparently, see the struggle as a competition where a victor will emerge and I see it as a struggle that is as old as human history and neither side can be defeated or vanquished and that the only real solution is through dialogue that seeks common ground.

The events at Marshall and GW were what they were: talks and discussions about the textbook controversy.  I can assure you that the protesters were not maligned or ridiculed at all.  I thought that they were fine discussions that were less about winning the textbook or culture war and more about opening a dialogue for listening to the "other side" and figuring a way to work through tough philosophical differences. I thought that a great discussion followed. 

My (edited) response:

If you think that the disagreement between the worldviews of protesters and pro-bookers can be solved by listening to the other side, you will always be frustrated by realities such as I used with the WVU vs. Pitt analogy in my op-ed “They Won.” The protesters have listened to what the pro-bookers want to do with schools-- and ultimately society--and we have resoundingly rejected it. I assume the pro-bookers feel the same about us. Both sides are out to win.

What you heard, and what someone from my point of view would have heard--likely differ. That is the point. Protesters (overwhelmingly conservative) view the world differently than pro-bookers (overwhelmingly liberal).

Besides that indisputable fact, there are some obvious factors that weigh heavily on any claims of an event to have fairly represented both sides. There is no way that including Jim Lewis would ever be perceived as anything but what it was—a platform for Lewis the liberal.  For the record (as I have always stated) I do not personally dislike Lewis since I do not know him.  He is probably a nice neighbor and a fine father, and he certainly does good works.  However, I detest what Lewis advocates. 

There is no discussion when only one side is truly represented. Of course, you (as a liberal) would be more satisfied with the slanted discussion than the fair and balanced forum held at the Culture Center.  Lewis probably loved it. 

So, respectfully, your concept of a fine discussion I would view as a faulty deduction.

You are correct to say this issue is as old as human history. However, there will be a victor between the diametrically opposed positions held by protesters and pro-bookers.  It likely will not happen until Christ brings it all to an end.  Until then, there can be no compromise between right and wrong, or more accurately—between good and evil (see Chapter 20).  The pro-book side does not want dialogue unless they dominate it. In other words, pro-bookers speak and protesters listen. That is why the follow-up forums only included a token protester who was likely in awe of Lewis and the lime-light. As I proved during the evolutionism battles (http://insectman.us/testimony/resolution.htm), liberals are narrow-minded and dogmatic. Whenever liberals are ready to compromise their dogmatic beliefs (like pre-born babies are not human and are subject to slaughter, or anal intercourse is normal and healthy), let me know.

TEXTBOOK WAR HOME