My heart sank as I read contentious letters relating to the book "George."

I read the content page, additional pages, and reviews. Many liked it; others did not. Several, teachers included, felt it was inappropriate for fourth-graders.

Curiosity led me to seek what the percentage of LBGT persons are in this country.

2012 reported 3.5 percent (Gallup's first report)

2016 reported 4.1 percent

May 25, 2018, NBC reported "4.5 percent of US adults identify as LBGT... The increase was driven primarily by millennials, 8.2 percent of whom identify as (LBGT)."

Could there be a link to the rising numbers due to increased exposure to and notoriety of alternative lifestyles by "celebrities," media, and entertainment? Could exploitation of the lifestyle confuse and possibly encourage experimentation in ways taboo for millennia?

Regardless of the number, everyone has the right to be treated with respect, love, and dignity.

My heart goes out to those who deeply struggle with gender issues.

That being said, our love and respect should be extended to all people, including those with gender issues; those who are religious, or not; those with divergent political views or economic status; and those of all ethnic backgrounds.

Though I support giving appropriate space in the public library, I'm not convinced that impressionable young ones beginning the voyage of maturing bodies and minds - which is often frustrating and confusing - need "walls" of books like George.

Parents are responsible to teach or not teach their children sensitive topics. May I suggest that most parents want to raise their children while giving schools the responsibility of teaching core learning and providing guidance for further learning - with parental knowledge.

I do not agree that it is the schools responsibility to teach "gender politics." Civics and government classes cover societal and governmental issues. No one should feel the need to put their child in a separate school. Balance and impartiality should be in schools, whether politically or on sensitive subjects such as gender and sexuality. It is unfortunate that some teachers use school as a platform to express their political or moral views bringing into schools disharmony, rather than focusing on teaching educational skills, particularly at the university levels.

God makes no "mistakes." He does, however, give guidelines. Adam and Eve left his protection in the Garden of Eden. Genesis 3:16-19, King James Bible, which refers to the consequences of disobedience.

Every person is a divine reflection of our Creator: pieces of coal with potential to become a beautiful diamond. There are things that we don't and maybe will never understand, but God gave us Ten Commandments (Exodus 20:1-20, KJB). Focusing on those alone would lead us to a wonderful world.

Christ died for our sins. Yes, there are sins. Christ acknowledged them and further said "go thy way and sin no more." (John 8:11)

Our humanness, upbringing, social circle, etc. influence us. We automatically make judgments and discernments. It takes work to overcome our natural tendencies to judge. John 13:34 - Christ speaking to his disciples said:

"A new commandment I give unto you,

That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another."

I am so weary of peoples' pride getting in the way of reasonable, civil, exchanges. I feel strongly about my opinions and hope I display civility toward those that differ from me. It seems, as a society, we are missing civility, respect and love that makes a town wonderful, a state productive and a country great.

May our goal be to create an environment within ourselves that will pave the way for us to sit together with love and concern one for another to make this an even better place and a more peaceful world to live in.