Adams' overstated fears and very public whining exhibit a selfishness that, in the face of his sons' natural eagerness to become men, is appalling. Instead of acknowledging his kids' curiosity privately while admiring their intelligence to seek out accurate information instead of taking notes from a locker room wall, it appears that he invented a cockamamie notion that the book thrust them into a state of distress.
Why and under what circumstances the boys told their father about the book, and how they related their feelings about its content to him isn't, as far as I can tell, a matter of public record. But if our own teenage experiences can be an accurate guide, we can be fairly certain of what didn't happen. The boys did not, as Adams wants us to believe, leap from their beds at night, and in a restless state run screaming to their father, "Dad, get these horrifying images out of our heads!" If they did, Adams has an entirely different sexual issue on his hands.
Even if Adams had told his sons that lesbians are Satan's playmates, the idea that boys their age were anything less than euphoric over the book is ludicrous. If they lost sleep, it's probably because they were struggling to retain Newman's images of lesbians and taking turns kicking each other in the head for not tracing a few pages and selling copies to their pimply faced pals in front of Kinko's.
What's most likely is that Adams learned of the boys' exposure to the world of clitorises and G-spots by overhearing them talk incessantly about what they'd seen, or after catching them washing their own sheets â€” frequently.
Tsk. Tsk. Boys can pee standing up, but girls have all brains.
Whatever the truth behind the blabbing, Adams' priceless words to the mayor were followed by another letter to him on Feb. 16 in which Adams complained that the book is "patently offensive and lacks any artistic, literary or scientific value." He insisted that it be removed and threatened a lawsuit.
As if the boys had seen a framed picture of a dildo during a field trip to Town Hall, the powers-that-be in Bentonville went into action. The issue was taken up by the Library Advisory Board and, on April 3, board members voted unanimously to remove The Whole Lesbian Sex Book and replace it with a similar resource, if possible. If a suitable replacement can't be found, according to Suter, the book will likely go back on the shelf.
Adams didn't like the sound of that, and on April 19 he sent an email to northern Arkansas' The Morning News, in which he wrote, "Any effort to reinstate the book will be met with legal action and protests from the Christian community."
The following day, Adams contacted the Daily Record, writing in yet another email, "For some reason, God placed this burden on me, and I will follow God's plan to preserve a sense of decency in our public libraries."
Did somebody say "God's plan" and "Christian community"?
On cue, Fox News entered the picture on April 27, giving the job of breaking the story nationally not to its legal eagle, the somewhat virile-looking Greta Van Susteren, but to Megyn Kelly, uber-femme blond hottie and co-anchor of Fox News' America's Newsroom.
Kelly, who obviously didn't get the memo that Fox Newsiness is next to Godliness, chuckled after reporting that Adams claimed the book gave his sons "many sleepless nights," and could barely keep a straight face while discussing with guests Adams' decision to file a $20,000 lawsuit against the town of Bentonville for obscenity.
As of this writing, there's been no further word of the suit, but rumor has it that Adams has contacted Ilene Chaiken to express his outrage and his sons' horror over her use of the letter L. "You've taken a perfectly good letter and defiled it!" he wrote in an email to her that he copied to the mayor of Sesame Street.
But there's a silver lining to this story oozing with ridiculousness and brought to national attention for all the wrong reasons, and it's provided by none other than the author of The Whole Lesbian Sex Book, Felice Newman. In an interview with the San Francisco Chronicle on May 3, Newman correctly noted: "If there was one teenaged lesbian or bisexual girl in America who didn't know there was a book about the sexual experiences she so desires, she knows now. Thank you, Fox News."
Thank you, indeed, from the bottom of my heart, and the cellar of my libido.
Kim Ficera is the author of Sex, Lies and Stereotypes: An Unconventional Life Uncensored. Her monthly column at AfterEllen.com, Don't Quote Me, is dedicated to all the folks in and out of Hollywood who talk without thinking or who don't know when to stop talking. Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.