The latest educational fad arrived in Clarksville, Tennessee, last week. It’s “Drag Queen Story Hour.” Before it comes to your public library or the public school attended by your child or grandchild, you better understand what’s so insidious about this movement. Thankfully, there is a way to address this.
“Drag Queen Story Hour” or, in the case of the event in Clarksville, “Rainbow Reading,” is a movement by LGBT advocacy groups, the purpose of which is to “capture[ ] the imagination and play of the gender fluidity of childhood and give[ ] kids glamorous, positive, and unabashedly queer role models.” It targets children ages 3 to 8.
Proponents want public libraries and the libraries in our public schools to have gender-themed books. So, parents, be on the lookout for books like Jacob’s New Dress and Red: A Crayon’s Story.
The Usual Defense Defeats Itself
Here is one of the comments I saw on Facebook in defense of the program that was typical of so many:
Would it be different if it were “Halloween Costume Story Time? Do you let your kids dress up in costumes and pretend to be someone else for Halloween? There is no difference, except drag queens are really good at it. But we all know what this is really about . . . they are gay.
At first blush, this sounds like a response that would shut the mouth of the protesting parents who allow their children to dress up for Halloween. But the defense actually defeats itself. It acknowledges that this is not about “pretending to be someone else” but about being “gay.”
Note that the advocate admits this is about people who “are” gay, not someone, like a child at Halloween, who is pretending to be gay. Children may pretend to be Superman and Wonder Woman, but they do not assert that they “are” their favorite superhero and their parents certainly don’t tell them they “are.”
In other words, when we say a “person is gay” or certain people “are gay,” we are making a statement about “being,” about the nature of a person. It is an anthropological statement about what it means to be human, the nature of man and woman.
Discerning the Real Issue
This is not, therefore, a trivial or who-cares kind of thing. The answer isn’t just don’t take your child to “Drag Queen Story Hour” or let your child check out the books. If you think so, then just consider the definition of anthropology in even the most basic dictionary, Merriam-Webster online:
1: the science of human beings; especially: the study of human beings and their ancestors through time and space and in relation to physical character, environmental and social relations, and culture.
2: theology dealing with the origin, nature, and destiny of human beings.
The former definition is grounded in humanism—man is the center of the universe defining and giving meaning to what is found in the universe. It’s the “study of human beings.” The latter is rooted in our knowledge and understanding—the study—of God, as opposed to man, who by virtue of being God, defines and gives meaning to what is found in the universe.
The real issue then, as with really all issues, is who is in charge? Is it us or is it God?
If it is us, then a sufficient number of us can foist anything we want on the rest of us, at least until the foisted-upon say, “Enough.”
If it’s God, then there is no number of us sufficient to say to Him, “Enough.” Instead, God at some point says to us, “Enough.”
Addressing the Issue
Those of us who profess allegiance to the latter belief system have no choice but to voice our opposition to such events, particularly when directed at our children. We cannot believe that it is good and that it promotes human flourishing for society to encourage children to believe a lie about the nature of the universe and what it means to be human.
But what we voice must be grounded not in displeasure, dislike, or anger, but in our belief about the nature of man and our belief that “in him [God] we live, and move, and have our being” (Acts 17:28).
But in voicing our worldview, we must also insist that those who disagree state theirs clearly and not just object to ours. If man, not God, is the center of the universe, then we need to ask them on what basis those who are clearly in the minority among us can claim that they are more right than the majority?
However, until those opposed to this agenda are ready to engage our culture on the real issue, we’ll continue to live in a pretend universe of being.
David Fowler served in the Tennessee state Senate for 12 years before joining FACT as President in 2006. Read David’s complete bio.
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