HUDSONVILLE, Mich. — A school district in Ottawa County has voted to remove a bestselling memoir about one marine's time in the Persian Gulf War.
The Hudsonville Public Schools (HPS) board narrowly decided to remove "Jarhead" from its school libraries by a vote of 4-3 last Monday.
The decision came after two hours of public comment and discussion by the board.
"We're here to fight against darkness," One community member said during public comment. "Jarhead has an extremely violent, vulgar, pornographic diatribe, and tonight, we will learn if HPS has any intention of taking any measures to protect our students from any flagrantly obscene content."
Community opinions were split on removing the book from the school libraries.
"We are allowing recruiters into schools where kids can sign on the dotted line, but they can't read about actual service members and soldiers experiences," another person said in opposition to the ban.
The book first appeared in the school's library in 2004 and the board noted that the book had been checked out a total of 21 times since 2010.
The book was first brought to the boards attention due to complaints from parents who said the book disrespected the military and portrayed graphic scenes of violence and sex.
You can watch the public comment about Jarhead from the meeting here:
Jarhead is written by Anthony Swofford about his time with the Surveillance and Target Acquisition Platoon of the 2nd Battalion, 7th Marines during the Persian Gulf War.
The book was the basis for the R rated movie "Jarhead" in 2005. It has been said to be one of the most accurate war movies ever made and yet has also been criticized by military personnel as well.
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