Editor’s Note: This piece is reprinted with permission from Acculturated.
A friend of mine was recently at a play group when one mom suggested reading a fairy tale in which two princes end up with each other. She asked the other parents present if they were okay with it, adding, “You know how some people can be.” I suggested that, the next time these parents got together, she bring one of Newt Gingrich’s children’s books and ask if the other parents were okay with it, using the same disclaimer of, “You know how some people can be,” because we all know that the open-minded two-princes mother would likely have a major problem with a book by a conservative and have no problem expressing it.
Then again, for parents like that one, Brooklyn now has taxpayer-funded programming that turns children’s story time into an agenda-driven activity. The public library is now offering “Drag Queen Story Time.”
From the Brooklyn Public Library website:
What do drag queens and children have in common? They love dressing up and all things sparkly and fancy! Drag Queen Story Hour captures the imagination and play of the gender fluidity in childhood and gives kids glamorous, positive, and unabashedly queer role models.
It’s not just Brooklyn, reports Smithsonian Magazine. Drag Queen Story Hour hit San Francisco in 2016 and will soon be coming to Orlando as well. Apparently, people around the country are interested in having their tax dollars spent paying for drag queens to read to their children.
While this story time is ostensibly meant to introduce children to new ideas and open their minds, it is clear that the events skew in a particular political direction. What sort of outcry would there be if there were a children’s event promoting American exceptionalism or traditional values? An event with books about gun rights or the value of life in the womb? No, that would never do.
There is always the option of leaving agenda-driven events off of the calendar, of course, particularly when it comes to children’s activities, but that is evidently too much to ask in 2017, when everything has to be political, even story time for kids. When it comes down to it, these libraries are not aiming to teach children various worldviews, allowing them to grow into well-rounded adults capable of forming their own opinions, but to indoctrinate them into one specific worldview at the expense of all others. These are not people who are comfortable with children having truly open minds.
As the author of two patriotic (and apolitical) children’s books, I can attest to the fact that the Left is highly suspicious of exposing children to anything that could potentially be considered conservative. The hate mail I received for educational books about America’s founding proved that liberals were extremely uncomfortable with patriotism, which they see as political. Why teach children facts when they can learn left-wing talking points instead?
Story time is, of course, optional, but funding it is not. Taxpayers pay for the library, which means they’re paying for these hyper-politicized story times that teach kids to fall into line with left-wing values. That’s what this comes down to — a public entity offering programming to indoctrinate children into a specific (and ideological) way of thinking. This isn’t about being open to a particular way of thinking, it’s about being closed to any other. Ladies and gentlemen, your tax dollars (and libraries) at work.
Editor’s Note: This piece has been emended since its initial posting.
– Amelia Hamilton (@ameliahammy) is a conservative blogger, fellow with the Franklin Center for Government and Public Integrity, and hockey fan. This piece is reprinted with permission from Acculturated.