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Happy Pride Month: a catastrophic start.

Moray Council announces a ‘Drag Queen Story Hour' for children to spend an afternoon in the library to try to entice a love for reading.

In the spirit of Pride Month, Drag Queen performer ‘Miss Lossie Mouth’ was invited to conduct the storytelling for the event.

The hope, I’m guessing, would be to instil a sense of comfort in children amongst colourful surroundings from an early age.

Teaching them it’s okay to be different. Normalising inclusion.

One of the books, for instance, ‘And Tango Makes Three’ is a short story about two male penguins who raise a female chick. Just one of the colourful, joyous stories these kids would hear that afternoon.

A more welcome alternative, some would say, than taking a 5-year-old to a football match where binge-drinking adults shout all sorts of bile at each other. An environment in which not a single player has come out as gay.

Douglas Ross has since intervened to say it’s “totally inappropriate” to hold an event like this for kids under the age of six. Storytime for young kids shouldn’t focus on “sexual identity” or “gender,” he says.

Conservative MSPs were quick to back him up. Folk like Stephen Kerr said he can’t understand “why” you would invite a Drag Queen to speak to children of all people. Emphasis was repeated on ‘why.’

Perhaps both Douglas and Stephen could have benefitted from an environment that normalises inclusion at an early age… ‘Drag’ doesn’t automatically equal something sexual.

If this is where their mind goes then they should be encouraged to talk openly about why that is.

Cos if not, we must ask why this so uncomfortable for them?

I mind watching men dressed in frocks and wearing colourful make-up at the pantomime as a kid. I didn’t feel endangered by this in any way.

I’m guessing we’ll be after clowns next, will we?

Ross thinks it’s inappropriate to hold a “show” like this for kids… I’m assuming he doesn’t mean storytelling at a local library so it must be something to do with the person reading the stories.

So we need to crack down on… what? Colour? Wigs?

Are we trying to reimpose this misogynist ideology of men and women having to look a certain way? Are we trying to alienate these ‘strange predators’ (quoted directly from the replies to Ross’ tweet) for not conforming to dated, binary conceptions of what it means to be a ‘man’ and a ‘woman’?

Wearing a wig doesn't make you a predator.

& this isn’t an all-year-round thing. It’s not a brainwashing exercise.

Politicians are quick to jump on the ‘Happy Pride Month’ bandwagon; striving for inclusivity, empowering people, validating the ‘Q’ in LGBTQ with people questioning… so what on earth is wrong with a man wearing a sparkly outfit and a wig?

More importantly, why is it so important to teach kids that there is something wrong with it?

I know plenty of people that refrain from questioning themselves because of deep-rooted, societal discomforts. All stemming from these binary stereotypes that we’re now seeking to reinforce all of a sudden.

The toxic masculinity movement, the anxiety, trying to prove yourself as something that you’re not… and for what?

If only our schools had taken time once a year to host such events and teach us from an early age that it’s okay to be different. We’re always going on about ‘teaching the kids from an early age’ and then as soon as we start actually doing so everyone hits a para and goes back to the usual. Just because it’s easier.

You’ve got a generation of boys suffering significant mental health issues, discomfort in living up to so-called ‘masculinity.’

Suicide rates are up and more kids are turning to drugs to get a release from their every day worries.

...Stephen Kerr asks, ‘Why the children?’

Because children aren’t born with these problems. They aren’t born homophobic or sexist or with whatever hate-filled language they still seem to be using. They aren’t born with discomfort within themselves.

Society teaches them to have it.


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