Morgantown, WV recently had the opportunity to host a Drag Queen Story Time. If you are not familiar with what that is, it is very straightforward. Books being read out loud by drag queens.
Unfortunately there were some in our community who decided their bigotry and hate was worth more than bringing joy and education to children. Threats of violence were made against the readers and the event. For safety reasons, the event was cancelled.
Did you know that reading out loud to a child has a myriad of benefits for your child? Children who are read to at young ages:
- Excel in school
- Develop better social skills
- Have improved language skills
- Increased listening skills
- Tend to be more empathetic.
Basically, reading makes your children better people.
What could be better than that? How about having these amazing benefits instilled by beautiful people who are comfortable being true to who they are? Don’t we want our kids to be accepted for who they are? Don’t we want them to be happy and confident?
Kids feel the peer pressure to “fit in” even in the elementary school level. Too often, this leads to children hiding passions or changing their personalities just so they can feel loved and accepted.
I, for one, think the opportunity for my child to interact with such a brave and confident person would be nothing but beneficial. I am deeply saddened that the hate in our community has robbed us of this opportunity.
Something good has come from this, though. An eloquently spoken Facebook Live announcement was made following the cancellation of the event. Dimitria Blackwell and Robin Hearts-Love, the volunteers who were heading up the event, have announced that they will be creating a Drag Queen Story Time YouTube channel.
While it is not what they originally had in mind, it still fulfills the goal they had set: bringing literature into the lives of children. So take Dimitria and Robin’s lead and teach your children. Teach them about books. Teach them about self love. Teach them diversity. Teach them kindness. Teach them to be better than the hate we see too often in this world.