Man arrested at school board meeting after protesting book assigned to daughter
William Baer was arrested at a school board meeting after raising concerns about the the Jodi Picoult book 'Nineteen Minutes' being assigned to his teenage daughter. (YouTube)
Christina Commisso, CTVNews.ca
Published Wednesday, May 7, 2014 10:06AM EDT
A New Hampshire dad was arrested at a school board meeting after protesting a book assigned to his teen daughter that contained what he said was a graphic sex scene.
William Baer attended a Gilford School Board meeting on Monday night where he raised concerns over the Jodi Picoult book "Nineteen Minutes," and in doing so, apparently violated the board's two-minute talk rule.
The book tells the story of a bullied teen who eventually goes on a shooting rampage at his school. The book also contains a sex scene between two teenagers, which Baer thought was inappropriate.
Baer reportedly asked the school board members if they would read the sex scene out loud, but they refused.
In what became a heated discussion, Baer was approached by a police officer who handcuffed him.
The incident was captured on camera.
"You're going to arrest me? Because I violated the two minute rule?" Baer asks the officer.
The school board issued a statement Monday night apologizing for failing to inform parents that the book was being assigned, which had been the case in the past.
"The district will take immediate action to revise these policies to include notification that requires parents to accept controversial material rather than opt out," school board chair Sue Allen said in a statement. "Furthermore, the notification will detail more specifically (with) the controversial material."
Picoult has said her three children read the book while they were in high school. Over the last couple of days she has retweeted a number of fans of "Nineteen Minutes" on Twitter who praised the book.