Onlookers gasped as 11-year-old Knox Zajac read a sexually explicit passage from a book in Windham Middle School’s (WMS) library to the Windham School Board in Maine.
Knox Zajac read the scene in a noticeably prepubescent voice.
The book Knox Zajac read, “Nick and Charlie,” by Alice Oseman describes a gay sex scene between two teens.
But for the school librarian who saw Knox Zajac check out the book, exposing an 11-year-old to sexually explicit words wasn’t enough, he said.
The librarian also recommended similar books.
“This book was at my middle school and was on a stand. When I rented it out to show my Dad it, the librarian asked if I wanted more, and if I wanted a graphic novel version,” Knox Zajac said in a video posted by Maine parental rights advocate Shawn McBreairty.
At that, the room gasped.
But according to father Adam Zajac, the librarian was the one gasping when Knox Zajac announced he was checking the book out for his Dad to inspect.
“Her face immediately turned red. She got very uncomfortable and started stuttering,” said Adam Zajac.
Adam Zajac said his son offered to read passages from the book before the school board.
“My son Knox really wanted to attend,” he said.
Then Knox Zajac asked if he could read a passage from the book to the meeting that included a curse word and a sexually explicit description.
“You know what? If it was good enough to be in your schools and it’s okay for them to sign that out to you, yes. You can,” Adam Zajac replied.
When Adam Zajac heard his child’s voice reading the words, he felt a rising anger, he said.
“As soon as I heard him, it got me so upset listening to the book. I’m glad he read that page,” he said. “It immediately made it easy for me to say what I said about the podium.”
Adam unloaded on the meeting.
“You know who knows the best for our children? The parents,” he told the meeting.
“I don’t work anymore, and I will be more than happy to focus my time and effort for the security of my child and children in this school. I will be a thorn in your sides. So, I just want you to be aware of what you’ve awoken.”
Knox Zajac first found “Nick and Charlie” while looking for books at the WMS library. He had heard his high school-age brother discussing how his school had the book “Gender Queer” by Maia Kobabe with his father Adam Zajac.
Parents nationwide have fought against the presence of the graphic novel “Gender Queer” in school libraries because of the book’s explicit pictures of sexual positions and solo sex.
Mature Content for Middle Schoolers
Shocked by the inappropriate content in “Nick and Charlie,” Knox Zajac checked it out to show his father.
“Dad, you have to look at this library book that I got,” Knox Zajac told him.
Adam Zajac said “Nick and Charlie” started with normal pictures of two teen boys hanging out. But then he flipped over a page and found a picture of the two boys deep in a straddled makeout session.
“It frustrated the hell out of me,” Adam Zajac said.
Adam Zajac said he felt outraged that a middle school library would contain a book rampant with explicit sexual descriptions, endorsements of casual sex, teen drinking, and 37 curse words.
“Everyone should go into uni single!! University years are your sexiest years!! Gotta bang as many people as you can!!!!” one quote from the book reads, according to the obscene book watchdog website.
“He lied to people at school for months about his anorexia,” reads another.
“‘I want a drunk hookup in the bathroom later,’ he murmurs, and then he walks off before I have the chance to answer him,” one character says.
“Like one minute you’re seriously pissed off with me and the next you want to [expletive] with me!” another line reads.
Battling the School Board
In the school board meeting, Adam Zajac said he fought WMS to remove “Nick and Charlie.”
He first alerted the school board to the book on Feb. 18, he said, but he doubts the school will take action to remove it.
“They write policies that make it extremely difficult to get these books removed,” he said.
Although it may be easy to get books with sex scenes into the hands of children as young as 10 years old, it’s difficult to get them out, Adam Zajac said.
A book removal challenge can take four months to process and makes parents jump through many administrative hoops, he said.
Most of the time, parents give up rather than engage in a drawn-out battle with the bureaucracy.
Right now, Adam Zajac said he hopes national media coverage of his story will force the school board to act.
“I’m so thankful that there’s a national spotlight on this to really give us an opportunity nationwide to get this crap out of the schools and this indoctrination of our children out of there,” he said.
He added that he’s not sure his efforts will result in the book’s removal.
Few Activists Versus Many Parents
Despite the school’s reluctance, he estimates that nearly 80 percent of local parents want “Nick and Charlie” out of middle school libraries.
Even so, he said, WMS appears intimidated by the small percentage of the community that appreciates the books.
“I really think the only people that were there for the book were these librarians and activists that were called upon to come in there and stand up,” he said.
As of now, the school hasn’t removed “Nick and Charlie” from the school library, Adam Zajac said.
“Nick and Charlie” isn’t the only book in the Windham school system with sexually explicit images, he added.
In Maine’s School District 14, there are 68 books with sexually explicit passages, he said. But he was unsure how these books were divided between middle school and high school.
He said he hopes local parents will wake up to the fact that schools are willing to give children sexually graphic books but hesitant to remove them.
“Sexualization has no place in our schools,” he said. “And this is taxpayer-funded. So, in my opinion, this should be a majority-rule situation,”
The Epoch Times reached out to WMS but received no response.
As previously reported, many Maine public schools have defied parents to thrust explicit books and transgender identities on students.
In one Maine school, a counselor secretly encouraged a 13-year-old girl to identify as transgender.
A new curriculum for Maine schools starts teaching children as young as kindergarten about transgender teddy bears, red-labeled crayons that identify as blue, and homosexual penguins.
In Hermon, Maine, a teacher told parents to take their children elsewhere if they didn’t trust teachers.