On Thursday, California Governor Gavin Newsom (D) announced that he would be levying a $1.5 million fine on the Temecula Valley Unified School District (TVUSD) over the school board’s recent decision to reject a state-endorsed textbook intended for elementary schoolchildren that discusses the infamous gay rights activist Harvey Milk.
“We’re going to purchase the book for these students — the same one that hundreds of thousands of kids are already using,” Newsom said. “If these extremist school board members won’t do their job, we will — and fine them for their incompetence.”
Joseph Komrosky, the president of the TVUSD Board of Education, has emphasized that the board’s rejection of the textbook is centered around the pedophilia that Milk, a former member of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors who passed away in 1978, engaged in during his life. “My word choice [of calling Milk a ‘pedophile’] is based upon facts represented by Mr. Milk, and I don’t believe those facts are a good example for our children to learn about in elementary school,” Komrosky said in a tweet in response to Newsom’s claim that Komrosky’s tweet was “An offensive statement from an ignorant person.”
The pedophilic actions of Milk have been extensively documented. As noted by The Washington Stand’s Ben Johnson:
“Milk … had a sexual relationship with Jack Galen McKinley, a 16-year-old runaway who committed suicide after their encounter. Milk was attracted to ‘boyish-looking men in their late teens and early 20s,’ wrote LGBT activist Randy Shilts in his biography of Milk, his friend. ‘Harvey always had a penchant for young waifs with substance-abuse problems.’”
The decision by the TVUSD Board of Education is the latest in a growing movement of public school systems taking action to remove pornographic books from school curriculums and libraries in response to a nationwide outcry from parents. In February, Broward County Public Schools in Florida announced they would be removing “Flamer,” a pornographic novel, and would be reviewing other books in their schools’ library catalogues for sexually explicit content. In June, the Hanover County School Board in Virginia announced a new policy that would allow parents to file challenges to remove explicit books from school libraries.
These actions followed the enaction of Florida Governor Ron DeSantis’s (R) March 2022 bill that requires all school districts in the state to have their instructional and library reading materials reviewed to make sure they are free from sexually explicit content.
Meanwhile, Newsom’s unusually strong public rebuke and large monetary fine of a school district’s decision to reflect the values of the local voters may be an indication of his plans for a future Democratic presidential run.
“Gavin Newsom desperately wants to be president of the United States,” said podcast host and Family Research Council Senior Fellow Joseph Backholm on a recent episode of “Outstanding.” “California is like a glimpse into the window of the future of what happens when progressives get everything they want.”
“I think he’s absolutely running,” Jonathan Keller, president of the California Family Council, concurred. “The question is, is he running in 2024 or 2028? And I think that we will not know that for a while. We may not honestly know that until the Democratic National Convention next year.”
Dan Hart is senior editor at The Washington Stand.
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