Temecula school board president calls Harvey Milk a pedophile, sparks outcry

The Temecula Valley School Board President is coming under fire for his comments on slain former San Francisco Supervisor and gay rights activist Harvey Milk, after the board recently decided to exclude a social studies textbook with info about Milk from its curriculum. 

In a recent meeting, Board President Dr. Joseph Komrosky called the late Milk "a pedophile."

The comments came during a discussion on whether to include a particular social studies textbook in the fourth grade curriculum. According to a person providing comment to the board during the recorded session, information on Milk wasn't included in the textbook, but in supplemental resources for the book.

"That can be a choice that people read from, and it just does clarify what his lifestyle was and it just clarifies that he was responsible for some of the movement in California with gay rights," the person said. 

"You know my question is why even mention a pedophile," Komrosky responded. 

Many in the crowd immediately responded saying that Milk was not in fact a pedophile, to which Komrosky said, "I beg to differ."

The board ultimately voted 3-2 in favor of excluding the literature from their curriculum. 

Komrosky's comments have sparked outcry from gay rights groups, and even got the attention of California Gov. Gavin Newsom. In a tweet Saturday, Newsom called Komrosky's comment "an offensive statement from an ignorant person. This isn't Texas or Florida. In the Golden State, our kids have the freedom to learn."

"Congrats Mr. Komrosky you have our attention. Stay tuned," Newsom tweeted.

Now there are two rallies planned to protest the board's decision. Educators will rally Tuesday to talk about the process to adopt textbooks and the impact of not having textbooks this year. That protest will be at 4 p.m. at the duck pond at the corner of Rancho California and Ynez roads.

Teachers who support using the material will protest next week on June 13 at 5 p.m. at the Ronald Reagan Sports Park.