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Do You Think Your Kids Should Read “Fifty Shades of Grey”? Wal-Mart Does.

Do You Think Your Kids Should Read “Fifty Shades of Grey”? Wal-Mart Does. January 7, 2015

WalMart

As the parent of teens, it’s hard to stay on top of all of their viewing and reading choices.  It’s even harder when stores categorize “mommy porn” in the young readers section.

In my hometown of Columbia, Tennessee — the “Mule Capital of the World” — Walmart customers started noticing that “Fifty Shades of Grey” was being sold as a book for “teens and young readers.”   In fact, it was right next to Shel Silverstein’s “Where the Sidewalk Ends.”  Thankfully, when a mom expressed her concerns to the store manager, he promptly moved the kinky, erotic adult best seller from the kids’ shelves.

A week later, she was doing her normal shopping when she noticed that the book was right back on the same shelf for kids.  After another conversation with the manager, the books were moved.

Again.

Today, another mom-of-a-teenager was in the same store.  She, too, was alarmed to find “Fifty Shades of Grey.”

When she expressed concern, managers once again responded kindly and considerately by moving the books.

If this is happening in a small, rural, southern town, I wondered if it was happening all over the nation.  A very nice customer service representative at the national headquarters said the book was appropriately shelved as “thirteen and up.”

“In fact,” she told me, “I was assigned ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ as a 9th grader as a part of a compare/contrast literature assignment,” she said.   “By the way, I liked the book!”

In other words, it seems like this placement is probably intentional and deliberate.  It’s probably being sold to your community’s young readers, too.

Will you do me a favor?  Go to your local Walmart and see if this book on the “young readers” shelf.  I hope it’s not.  But if it is, take a photo and send it to me (along with your hometown) via Facebook or Twitter.

Also, feel free to contact Walmart yourself in the following three ways:

1.  Talking to your local store manager (in person or by phone)

2. Calling Walmart’s headquarters at 1-800-925-6278.  You’ll be prompted to go through a labyrinth of button pushing.  This is what works:

A. As a customer, press 2.

B. To talk about the store experience, press 2

C. To discuss merchandise, press 1

3.  Using their contact form for the company here.

As an author, I’m a big fan of books and art.  I love Walmart, and I love that they sell books at a low cost to America’s reading public.  However, we need to all work together to protect unsuspecting kids from picking up a book that could potentially damage their sexual development at a young age.

READ WALMART’S OFFICIAL RESPONSE HERE.  (THANK YOU, WALMART!)

Related: Check out this “Sabotaged” Books-a-Million “Fifty Shades of Grey” Display 

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