Drag Queen Story Hour
Don’t these children look terribly abused and confused?

There is a story at Hornet today about a Louisiana mayor who is trying to ban Drag Queen Story Hour. It is a subject that I have written about countless times. At this point, librarians across the country — including the reddest of red locales — have found that Drag Queen Story Hour brings attention to the library and encourages kids to read.

The kids get it and they love it. They are not confused at all. Some adults, on the other hand, are profoundly confused. Apparently, exposure to drag queens turns children gay or trans and some grownups have said “enough is enough.” Personally I have had more than enough of enough is enough.

One of those confused adults is Mayor Joel Robideaux of Lafayette, Louisiana (population 126K). He is trying to cancel an event at a local library. Just in passing, I would like to know what Mayor Robideaux has done to encourage reading for K-8 children.

The library’s fall newsletter refers to the event as “an afternoon of books, songs and activities led by drag queens” from the Delta Lambda Phi fraternity at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette.

The books to be read are age appropriate and selected by the librarian who has the specific education, training and experience to make these decisions. Robideaux said in a statement last Tuesday that he wants to find out how the event was approved. Robideaux noted anyone can reserve space at public libraries without fear of discrimination but officials must ensure “internally approved programming is both appropriate and serves the needs of Lafayette Parish.”

In other words, what Robideaux is really saying is that drag queens are inappropriate because they are closely associated with LGBT people. Wanting to find out how something was approved usually means that the speaker does not approve.

Aside from the fact that these events promote the library and encourage kids to read, they convey an important message of inclusion; teaching young people that being different doesn’t mean that someone is bad. I hate to have to even write an explanation of the simple fact that this has absolutely nothing to do with sex.

Nevertheless, the Louisiana Family Forum sent out a notice saying that the event was a “clear attempt to advance a hyper-sexual agenda.” The group’s leader is Gene Mills, a Baptist minister.

This is posted on the group’s website. It includes a list of people to contact:

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According to these religious conservatives idiots, the Story Hour poses a threat to the “safety” of children.

Quite a few people showed up at a city council meeting. 23 voiced support for Drag Queen Story Hour. Only one person, a local pastor, was opposed. That must have come as a surprise. Religious conservatives are usually pretty competent at pissing people off and they are quite adept at using social media.

One speaker, Bonnie Barbier, said: “I appreciate this hatred, because it has shown me how amazing Lafayette is.” Barbier was dressed like a crab. She apologized if her appearance confused any children into thinking she was actually a hermit crab. Well done Ms. Barbier.

In summary, one group wants to teach kids to be afraid of people who are different. The other group wants to encourage kids to read while teaching them about diversity. Which of these groups poses the real danger to children?

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By David Cary Hart

Retired CEO. Formerly a W.E. Deming-trained quality-management consultant. Now just a cranky Jewish queer. Gay cis. He/Him/His.