The New Haven Register weighs in with actual news story about the story of Connecticut teacher Nathan Fisher who resigned after parents complained about him giving a 13-year-old a mature reader comic to read. The story confirms that it was, indeed EIGHTBALL #22 which is the book in question. The book shows a topless women and a man putting his hand up a woman’s skirt. Of course, there is much more to the story — it seems the student has been hazed in person and on Facebook*** because the teacher was very popular with other students.
The parents of a freshman student whose teacher resigned after he gave her a sexually explicit illustrated book said Wednesday their daughter has been the target of harassment from fellow students, and they want the school district to do more to clarify the issue with other parents.
The girl’s father, who asked that his family remain anonymous because it has already been the target of criticism, described the graphic novel that English teacher Nate Fisher gave the student as “borderline pornography.”
The book, one of a series of comic book novels by Daniel Clowes, is called “Eightball #22.” It includes references to rape, various sex acts and murder, as well as images of a naked woman, and a peeping tom watching a woman in the shower.
“It’s not even like a gray area,” the father said. “It’s clearly over the line.”
CBLDF head Chalres Brownstein is quoted throughout the story. Reading between thelines, all we can say is that we’re glad that dad wasn’t our dad. That said, it is up to parents to choose what their kids read. While we may think that the Clowesian brand of “rape and…murder” is fine, it may not be fine for all kids.
As for whether the teacher in question can be prosecuted…well, Clowes’ new comic strip running in the NY Times and general reputation as a respected literary figure would certainly make any legal action very interesting. In fact, EIGHTBALL #22 was eventually collected by Random House as the grahpic novel ICE HAVEN, making prosecution seem crazy mad. But sadly, worse things have happened in these United States. If nothing else, this small town tale of a very protective father, a well liked teacher, and a girl harassed by her schoolmates could be something out of…A DANIEL CLOWES COMIC!
If you watch the various news reports up on the internet, it’s clear that the media is making a meal out of this, with the sensational aspects played up. We’ve predicted this before, but we’ll predict it again: once someone who wants ratings actually reads a yaoi manga, we’re in for it.
***Facebook is the devil’s work by the way.