A complaint by a parent has led Berkeley County Schools to ban "Go Ask Alice," an obviously controversial book, but one that seems to preach the dangers of drugs.
Berkeley County School District Superintendent Dr. Chester Floyd on Friday yanked a controversial book as an instructional tool after a parent complained about her 13-year-old daughter having to read explicit curse words and sexual language out loud in class.
I've never read the book so it, in fact, could be horrible or, worse, it could relate in no way to what kids are going through today. But it sounds like any student reading it would take away the absolutely worst perception of drugs ever. While it's understandable that some parents would be put off by the language, I wonder what — if anything — will take its place.
Here's a few passages pulled from a synopsis.
• Alice happily experiments with more drugs and loses her virginity while on acid.
• Alice is enthralled with Roger but feels guilty about her drug use and loss of virginity. She doesn't know to whom she can talk about drugs. She is worried that she may be pregnant.
• In a boutique, Alice meets Chris, a hip girl. Alice's parents worry about Alice's "hippie" appearance. At school, they use drugs and are popular. Chris's friend Richie, a college boy, turns Alice on to marijuana. To make more money for drugs, she and Chris sell drugs and do whatever they can to help Richie and Ted (Chris's boyfriend and Richie's roommate). Alice and Chris discover Richie and Ted having sex with each other and flee to San Francisco. (Okay, that last part is absolutely ridiculously funny).
• At Sheila's swanky party, the girls use drugs again. They continue to party with Sheila until one night, when trying heroin, Alice realizes that Sheila and her boyfriend have been raping and brutalizing them.
• Chris smokes marijuana with her, and Alice goes back on drugs. The police raid Chris's house while she and Alice use drugs. The girls are put on probation, and Alice will be sent to a psychiatrist.
• Alice is cleaned up and meets a young sufferer of lifelong sexual abuse, Doris, who lets her stay at her apartment. They get sick from malnourishment and hitchhike to Southern California, where Alice takes more drugs, even prostituting herself for them.
• Alice loses consciousness and drifts off into a reverie that she thinks is either a flashback (caused by LSD residue in the spinal cavity) or a schizophrenic episode.
• Alice writes in her undated diary from a hospital. She is unsure how she has ended up here and can only think of the worms she thinks are eating her alive. She has chewed her fingers to the bone, and clawed up her face and body. Her father says that someone dosed with LSD the chocolate-covered peanuts Alice was eating while she was baby-sitting. Alice finds out she is being sent to an insane asylum. (She eventually gets out).
• In the epilogue, we are told that Alice died three weeks later of an overdose—whether it was premeditated or accidental remains unclear—and that she was one of thousands of drug deaths that year.