Tuesday, December 6

Homophobic mailer sent in Hudson to intimidate voters ahead of school board election

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Multiple residents of Hudson, Ohio received an anonymous, postmarked letter last week, with the recipients seemingly targeted based on the political signs displayed in their yards.

In the letter received on October 25, residents of a specific neighborhood in Hudson were told that one of their neighbors is a Hudson High School teacher whose use of the book 642 Things to Write About made national headlines in September when Mayor Craig Shubert threatened to criminally charge the entire school board for allowing the book to be used for supplemental instruction.

The letter then highlights several other books that were recently available in the school’s library, which the sender says feature oral sex and anal sex between two minors. The text then pivots to making statements about the school board candidates who the recipients support:

The candidates that you are supporting apparently do want these subjects taught to underage children, which is why they have allowed these books to be purchased with our tax dollars, and have made them available to Hudson children without parental approval for approximately the last five years.

The tone of the letter then becomes more threatening:

A letter similar to this has been sent to your neighbors. You may find future conversations with them to be awkward. They will likely be too embarrassed by the graphic and obscene nature of these books to speak of them. But they know from the identity of the candidates that you are supporting that you apparently also support the sexualization of Hudson’s under age children.

The letter finally concludes with a direct “suggestion”:

You might want to withdraw your support for these candidates and take your political yard signs down.

The letter was signed, “A neighbor who cares about kids.”

Accompanying the letter was a full-color, Xeroxed page depicting oral sex from the award-winning graphic novel Gender Queer.

7 different residents of Hudson contacted the City of Hudson Police Department to file a complaint about the letters.

According to the incident report filed by the police, “After reviewing the contents of this letter, it was determined that no crime was committed and [this]will be filed as an informational report.”

In the state of Ohio, voter intimidation only refers to conduct that takes place within a polling space. Federal law more broadly prohibits any intimidation, threats, coercion, or attempts to intimidate, threaten, or coerce voters. 🔥

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The Buckeye Flame amplifies the voices of LGBTQ+ Ohioans to support community and civic empowerment through the creation of engaging content that chronicles our triumphs, struggles, and lived experiences.

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